No:210/20, Head of the Press Service Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan Leyla Abdullayeva answers the question of the media
Question: What can you say about the work of the special session of the UN General Assembly dedicated to the fight against Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, convened upon the initiative of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan H.E. Mr. Ilham Aliyev?
Answer: The special session of the UN General Assembly dedicated to the fight against COVID-19 pandemic, convened on July 10, 2020, on the initiative of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan as the chairman of the Non-Aligned Movement, continues its work.
The special session, which was officially opened on July 10, is being held in a two-segment format, like all other sessions of the UN General Assembly. The segment where the procedural decisions were made was already completed on 21 July. Within this segment, the following 6 resolutions of the General Assembly were adopted through a silence procedure and published as official documents of the UN General Assembly:
- The decision on the election of the chairman of the 74th session of the UN General Assembly, Tijjani Muhammad-Band as the chairman of the special session;
- The decision on the election of the deputy chairmen of the special session;
- The decision on the election of the chairmen of the Main Committees of the special session;
- The decision on the adoption of the agenda of the special session;
- The decision on the approval of the composition of the Authorized Committee of the Special Session;
- The decision on the consideration of the list of states that skipped the payment of the membership fees to the UN and thus are deprived of the right to vote, in accordance with Article 19 of the UN Charter.
It should be noted that with regard to the continuation of the pandemic, the decisions within the UN General Assembly are made through the silence procedure, not by voting. In accordance with the relevant procedure, draft decisions are distributed to all UN member states and in case of absence of the countries opposing it during 72 hours, they are adopted.
Due to the restrictions imposed on the UN Headquarters because of the Coronavirus pandemic, it is currently not possible to hold official meetings of the UN General Assembly with the physical participation of the delegations from the capitals. In this regard, the regular session of the General Assembly in September will be held for the first time in history in a hybrid format, that is, depending on the choice of the states, either through pre-recorded video messages of the heads of delegations or with the physical participation of their Permanent Missions to the UN in the Assembly Hall.
Due to the current pandemic situation, it is planned to hold various segment discussions of the special session of the General Assembly, which is opened on July 10, in a different way from the previous formats of special sessions. In this regard, the modalities of holding the session at the level of the heads of state and government and its format are discussed by the UN member states. The specific dates of the general discussions will be determined after the relevant agreement is reached to this end.