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Razali then opened discussion on the "Provisional Agenda and Organization of Work of the First Substantive Session of the Commission" (E/CN.17/1993/L.1). The preliminary discussion focussed on whether the high-level ministerial meeting should take place at the beginning of the session or at the end. Most of the G-77 countries preferred the high-level segment to take place at the end of the meeting so that the ministers can resolve difficult questions and add political impetus to the results of the Commission meeting. The US preferred that the high-level segment take place at the beginning so that it could set the tone and present ideas at the beginning rather than just act as a "rubber stamp" at the end. The Russian Federation said that it does not matter when the high-level segment takes place as long as the ministers have a chance to focus their contributions and play a useful role.

A long discussion also took place after the EC proposed that a communique summarizing the main proposals and commitments be issued after the high-level segment. Most of the developing countries strongly disagreed. They felt that the work of the high-level segment should not be divorced from the work of the rest of the Commission and thus a separate communique would not be necessary.

After the discussion went on for about two hours, Razali asked governments to submit ideas in writing and announced that the Secretariat would prepare a revised provisional agenda for their consideration. Razali then adjourned the meeting for the day, announcing that the discussion on the multi-year thematic programme of work would resume the next morning.


Ambassador Razali opened the second day of the organizational session by introducing two draft decision "non-papers" prepared by the Chair, with assistance from the CSD Secretariat and based on the discussions held the previous day. The first "non-paper" was on the provisional agenda of the first substantive session of the CSD and the second was on the multi-year thematic programme of work for the Commission.

Razali asked the Commission if they could adjourn the meeting and reconvene at 4:00 pm so that the regional groups could meet and discuss these two documents. Colombia, on behalf of the Group of 77, requested that they define the working method of the CSD at this organizational session rather than waiting until the substantive session in June. Japan expressed concern about taking a decision on the clustering at this meeting and stated that they preferred to wait until the substantive session. Razali and the Secretariat seemed to be taken by surprise by this comment. After consulting with Desai, Razali said that he was trying to find a way to cater to their needs but that they should be assured that the decision taken at this session is not necessarily the final decision on the matter. The Netherlands and India asked for clarification on when the decision would be taken on the programme of work. India mentioned that if the programme of work will be decided at the substantive session, then the decision here should only be a series of recommendations. If the decision here will be the final one, then the subject should be removed from the provisional agenda of the substantive session in June. Razali adjourned the meeting.

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