For the first time ever a Global Model United Nations conference was organized by the UN Department of Public Information New York Headquarters (UN DPI NY) in partnership with World Federation of UN Associations (WFUNA).
The theme of the Conference was "The Millennium Development Goals – Lifting the Bottom Billion out Poverty".
The Conference was dedicated to the best university-level students and took place in Palais des Nations, Geneva, Switzerland, from 5-7 August 2009.
Armenian UN Association was also invited to represent a delegation in the conference. Among 700 participants from 60 UN member states seven best students from the Yerevan State University and the French University of Armenia took part in the GMUN with financial support of the RA President Mr. Serge Sargsyan, RA Civil Aviation Department, UN DPI Yerevan office and Armenian UN Association.
The conference aimed at serving as a bridge for exchanging experience on UN modelling and decisionmaking in the framework of United Nations. It encouraged the next generation of world leaders to take part in dealing with national and global problems, to voice their own solution mechanisms and approaches concerning these core issues.
For the selected participants the UN New York Headquarters initiated special online classes and video-conference sessions with the officials of UN in New York and Geneva. More than 10 online classes were held, the main subjects of which concerned the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the influence of economic crisis on MDGs, the effective tools and procedures for developing efficient mechanisms in order to achieve the MDGs, as well as the necessary local initiatives. The online classes were followed by mutual debates and discussions between experts and participants.
The Armenian UN Association's young enthusiasts took part in the online election process of Global Model UN officials. All the participants of the conference have elected through online voting the members of UN Secretariat, the Secretary-General, the chairperson of each committee, the vice-chairs and the rapporteurs. The member of Armenian delegation Ms. Amalya Hovsepyan was elected as a vice-president.
The heads of the delegations of General Assembly member countries were also elected online. Three representatives of the Armenian delegation - Mr. Aram Voskanyan, Ms. Amalya Grigoryan and Ms. Nare Vardanyan were subsequently chosen to be heads of delegations of their countries represented (Uganda, Algeria and Cyprus).
The UN General Assembly was simulated in Geneva.
Before the official opening of the conference and the work in the four Committees, young people took part in different events, with the UN officials involved. The participants of the GMUN were given a unique chance to take part in real UN gatherings, to get to know the departments of the Geneva Headquarters, its main missions and working strategies.
At the eve of the Conference opening ceremony the Armenian delegation was hosted by the RA Consul in Switzerland, Mr. Gagik Hovhannisyan. Thanks to Mr. Hovhannisyan the Armenian delegation learnt about the consulate works in Switzerland, the Armenian Diaspora there and also discussed the conference items. He outlined necessary information and diplomatic nuances for the delegates to get prepared for a speech in the UN Geneva Headquarters.
The opening of the Conference
The opening ceremony of the conference was held in the General Assembly Hall at the UN office in Geneva. The participants received a greeting from the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon. ... "The world has the human, financial and technological resources to lift the bottom billion out of poverty. Young people will be crucial in mustering political resolve and forging partnerships we need for success. The Global Model UN will reveal the real leaders, our world needs today" - reads the statement.
At the opening ceremony a number of UN high officials were present, among whom was the UN DPI USG in New York and Under Secretary-General Kiyo Akasaka .
The Work in the Committees
For three days the participants worked, debated and adopted subsequent resolutions in the following committees.
First Committee (Disarmament and International Security) Topics:
1. The Impact of uncontrolled Spread of Illegal Small Arms/Light Weapons on the Realization of MDGs
2. Observance of Environmental Norms in the Drafting and Implementation of Agreements on Disarmament and Arms Control
1. The Impact of the Economic and Financial Crisis on the Achievement of MDGs:
2. Climate Change
1. Human Rights and Environment
2. Children of Conflict and the Achievement of MDGs
1. Assessing UNRWA’s (UN Relief and Work Agency for Palestinian Refugees) contribution to the realization of the MDGs in the Near East.
2. The Outer Space and Development Agendas: crafting Global Approaches to ensuring the peaceful uses of Outer Space as an indispensable Tool in the Achievement of MDGs.
After three-day intense debates each Committee adopted a resolution related to the problems raised above.
The resolutions were completed in a Declaration for all.
The Closing of the Conference
The conference was concluded by the gathering in the General Assembly Hall, during which the Declaration was read up.
The young delegates adopted it by consensus calling different countries to follow their example and reach an agreement for a more efficient realization of the MDGs. The closing of the conference was processed by the Certificate Awarding Ceremony.
Participation of the Armenian Delegation
The participation of the Armenian delegation in the 1st Global Model UN was of core importance. Firstly, the young people learnt on practice about the work, done by the UN office in Geneva, got to know UN agencies and bodies, which is a huge professional upgrade. Besides, they affirmed and enriched their diplomatic skills and knowledge during the international negotiations and discussions.
Two representatives of the Armenian delegation have been given a chance to take special courses at the UN Peace University in Geneva next year, with the perspective of recieving necessary qualification to be accepted to the UN missions worldwide.
Impressed by the participation of the Armenian delegates, two experts of the UN office in Geneva expressed their willingness to visit Armenia this autumn, aimed at holding a special training-track, on the UN and other international organizations, at RA Universities.
The young delegates from Armenia took part in filmmaking on UN youth and were interviewed by popular Argentinean, Ghana and US TV-channels.
The Armenian delegation, on behalf of the Armenian youth, joined the Copenhagen Conference on Climate Change, going to be held this year, and has forwarded an open letter to the organizers, expressing the concern of young people in Armenia on Global Warming.