States were called on to deny safe haven to terrorists, as the UN General Assembly adopted 65 resolutions on human rights and social matters this morning, on recommendations from its Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee. The same resolution -- on human rights and terrorism -- also asked governments to consider whether a person has planned, facilitated or participated in terrorist acts before deciding to grant him or her asylum. The Assembly expressed solidarity with the victims of terror, and condemned incitement to ethnic hatred, in the resolution, which was adopted by a vote of 102 in favour, with 69 abstentions.
Human rights in Afghanistan were also on the agenda. Another resolution condemned the Taliban for both harbouring terrorists, and for violating the human rights of Afghans and others. Gross violations of the human rights of women were singled out explicit criticism. The Assembly called on all Afghan parties to make a public commitment of their intention to fully respect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all people.
Resolutions were also passed on the human rights situation in Cambodia, in Iran, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in Iraq, in parts of Southern Europe and in Sudan.
The impact of globalization on human rights was discussed, with a resolution adopted that described narrowing the gap between rich and poor as an essential explicit goal for States and the international community, if globalization is to form part of an enabling environment for full enjoyment of human rights.
The Assembly declared the United Nations Literacy Decade (2003 to 2012), by another resolution, with the special theme of "Education for All". That text stressed that literacy was essential to the success of programmes for development, gender equity and the eradication of poverty.
Development was also a key focus of another text, which set out priorities for the Second World Assembly on Ageing, which will take place in Madrid from 8 to 12 April next year, and will examine the links between development and ageing, and will give particular attention to the needs of developing countries.