Global Policy Forum

General Assembly Working Groups

1993-1997 and following

In late 1993 and early 1994, in the run-up to the United Nation's fiftieth anniversary in 1995, the General Assembly set up five working groups to discuss aspects of UN reform. General Assembly working groups include all UN members and are ill-equipt to move swiftly towards an objective. Like the Assembly itself, they are long on speech-making and short on action. The working groups responded to concerns raised by Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali in his reform proposals "Agenda for Peace" and "Agenda for Development." They looked at finance, Security Council reform, peace and security, and development, as well as the overall strengthening of the UN. They eventually produced relatively meager results, though their discussions remain interesting as a reflection of global political battles in that period. Four of the working groups completed their efforts -- or simply stopped meeting -- in 1996-97. But the Security Council reform working group continued to function. All member states could agree on the need for Council reform, though deep and intractable divisions blocked all action on specific proposals.

Basic Information about the Working Groups

Includes the official titles of the groups, their leadership, sub-groups, date established, and reports issued.

Overview of the Outcome of the Reform Working Groups as of Fall 1997

UN Press Report on Progress of the Working Groups - 31 July 1996

UN Press Report on Progress of the Working Groups - 15 January 1996

Documents and Reports of the Working Groups



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