At UN forum on ageing, delegates negotiate action plan, political declaration
As the United Nations World Assembly on Ageing moved into its third day on Wednesday, delegates continued to negotiate the texts of the final action plan and political declaration to be adopted at the conference's conclusion at the end of this week.
UN officials briefing reporters this afternoon in Madrid said that the two working groups were steadily making progress and expected to reach agreement tomorrow, in time for the documents to be approved by the close of the Assembly on Friday.
Five of the 17 paragraphs in the draft Political Declaration have already been agreed to, with another two awaiting approval from some governments, according to Johan Scholvinck of the UN's Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), which is serving as the Assembly's Secretariat.
There was little disagreement on core substantive issues, Mr. Scholvinck said, but a few outstanding matters of a more general nature remained. They, in part, related to provisions on the importance of enhanced international cooperation in implementing the Plan of Action and the issue of human rights and fundamental freedoms for all older persons.
As for the draft Plan of Action, DESA's Odile Frank told reporters that only 14 of the 117 paragraphs remained the focus of attention in the 50-page text. Having met yesterday afternoon to review the Chair's "non-paper," the Working Group had suspended its deliberations to meet in small groups this morning.
According to Ms. Frank, some delegations wanted to substitute previous language with formulas adopted just last month by consensus at the International Conference on Financing for Development in Monterrey, Mexico. There was also discussion on whether to include language from the 1995 World Summit for Social Development in Copenhagen and the General Assembly special session on social development that took place five years later.