Explanation of Vote by John F. Sammis, Deputy Representative to ECOSOC, on the Amendment to OP3 of A/C.3/66/L.43/Rev. 1 "Strengthening the Role of the United Nations in Enhancing Periodic and Genuine Elections and the Promotion of Democratization"

John F. Sammis
United States Deputy Representative to ECOSOC 
New York, NY
November 18, 2011




AS DELIVERED

Mr. President,

The United States of America will vote against the Russian proposed Amendment to OP3 and we encourage other delegations to do the same. The United States facilitated open and transparent negotiations and took on board many amendments to the text, including from the Russian delegation. It is regrettable that the Russian delegation has chosen to bring forward two amendments to the text, thus forcing a vote on this resolution with over 80 cross-regional co-sponsors

The issue raised on this amendment to operative paragraph three falls well outside the appropriate scope of a Third Committee resolution. This proposal is clearly aimed at Russian dissatisfaction with the election certification in Cote D’Ivoire. The appropriate place for the Russian delegation to address their concerns with this mandate is in the UN Security Council. They should not attempt to reopen an existing Security Council mandate by bringing this issue to the General Assembly’s Third Committee today. We would also note that the Russian delegation has repeatedly agreed to the Cote D’Ivoire SRSG’s mandate in all Security Council resolutions pertaining to Cote D’Ivoire’s elections, including Security Council Resolution 2000 this July. It is not appropriate to ask the Third Committee to reopen this debate.

It is our sincere hope that delegations will preserve the integrity of this text as a human rights resolution aimed at ensuring that countries, which request it, receive the support they need to conduct free and fair elections. We urge other co-sponsors to defend this resolution and call on all delegations to join us in voting “NO” on this Russian amendment. 

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PRN: 2011/258