A - Resolutions and decisions of the thirty-first session of the General Assembly and resolutions of the sixtieth and sixty-first sessions of the Economic and Social Council of relevance to the United Nations Environment Programme
461. The Governing Council considered agenda item 15 at its 70th and 72nd meetings, on 17 and 19 May 1977. The Council had before it a note by the Executive Director on resolutions and decisions of the thirty-first session of the General Assembly and resolutions of the sixtieth and sixty-first sessions of the Economic and Social Council of relevance to the activities of UNEP (UNEP/GC/104 and Corr.1 and Add.1).
462. In a brief introductory statement, the Executive Director drew the attention of the Council to the fact that some of those resolutions and decisions called specifically for action by UNEP; others called for action by organizations of the United Nations system in general, or were otherwise of relevance to the activities of UNEP.
Action by the Governing Council
463. At its 70th meeting on 17 May 1977, the Governing Council adopted without a
vote a draft decision sponsored by Finland, Hungary, the Philippines, the Union of
Soviet Socialist Republics and the United States of America on the Convention on the Prohibition of Military or Any Other Hostile Use of Environmental Modification Techniques (decision 102 (V)). 39/
464. The representative of Hungary, introducing the draft decision, said that the delegations of Colombia, Italy, Portugal and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland wished to become sponsors. The Convention with which the draft decision dealt would be signed at Geneva on 18 May. It sought to ban the military uses of environmental modification techniques which could cause incalculable harm to man and his environment, but did not preclude the peaceful uses of such techniques for the benefit of mankind.
465. The representatives of Bulgaria and Poland spoke in support of the draft decision and said they wished to become sponsors. The Romanian and Danish delegations also expressed support. The Brazilian delegation said that, while associating itself with the consensus reached, it felt more time should have been allowed for consideration of the draft, which would have given the members of the Governing Council an opportunity for more detailed study of the text.
466. The Argentine, French and Mexican delegations said they were unable to support the draft decision for reasons which they had explained in the General Assembly
debate on resolution 31/72 containing the Convention. The Mexican delegation recalled that it had voted against the resolution, while the Argentine and French delegations recalled that they had abstained.
467. The Chinese delegation said that the Convention had been concocted by a super-Power in an attempt to cover up its arms expansion and its ambition to establish hegemony. The ulterior motive of that superpower was to divert attention from the environmental damage resulting from its aggressive policies. The Chinese delegation had not participated in the vote in the General Assembly and could not support the draft decision.
468. At its 72nd meeting, on 19 May 1977, the Governing Council adopted without a vote a draft decision suggested by the President on resolutions and decisions of the thirty-first session of the General Assembly and resolutions of the sixtieth and sixty-first sessions of the Economic and Social Council of relevance to UNEP. 4o/
469. The representative of Argentina recalled that his delegation had abstained
when the General Assembly had adopted resolutions 31/58 and 31/72.
470. The representative of China said his delegation agreed in principle to the
resolutions contained in document UNEP/GC/104, adopted at the thirty-first session of the General Assembly and the sixtieth and sixty-first sessions of the Economic and Social Council, which were of relevance to the environment. However, with regard to General Assembly resolutions 31/10, 31/72, 31/109, 31/121 and 31/111 and Economic and Social Council resolutions 2013 (LXI) and 2o4o (LXI), it wished to reiterate its position of principle already expressed at the thirty-first session of the General Assembly and the sixty-first session of the Economic and Social Council.