Adopting a key resolution essentially endorsing Secretary-General Kofi Annan's proposed agenda for further reform of the United Nations, the General Assembly today wrapped up the main part of its annual session.
"Without doubt, one of the most important issues of this autumn session was the discussion on the strengthening of the UN system," said Assembly President Jan Kavan of the Czech Republic. He added that the resolution on reform would go far towards bolstering the impact of the UN's work, especially in economic and social fields.
"The adoption of the resolution has been a significant achievement - it represents an important stepping stone for the future work and deliberations in the continuous process of reforming the Organization," he said.
Among numerous measures set out in the six-page text, the Assembly welcomed Mr. Annan's intention to conduct a systematic evaluation of the impact, efficiency and cost-effectiveness of the UN Department of Public Information. It also endorsed his decision to entrust key responsibilities to the Special Adviser on Africa, including coordinating guidance on the continent and supporting the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD).
In addition, the Assembly concurred with the Secretary-General's intention to establish a panel of eminent persons, "reflecting a diversity of views," to review the relationship between the UN and civil society.
In his closing remarks to the session, President Kavan underscored the importance of the Assembly's work in following up on the anti-poverty targets set in 2000 at the UN Millennium Summit. "Despite uneven progress achieved in the implementation, I am hopeful that we will be able to jointly address the gaps in the implementation and progress further to attain the goals," he said.
Ambassador Kavan also pledged continued work in the coming months to build on the achievements of the current session, which began on 10 September and covered 168 separate agenda items.