Sixth Session of the COP of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification 
Havana, Cuba, 25 Aug.- 5 Sept., 2003




Mon 25 
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Wed 27
Thu 28
Fri 29 
Mon 01 
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Wed 03
Thu 04
Fri 05

Margaret Sangarwe (Zimbabwe)

Ir. I Nyoman Yuliarsana (Indonesia)


Delegates met in morning and afternoon sessions of the COW and CST. Informal consultations on the programme and budget and the CRIC also took place. The COW considered: the Regional Coordination Units (RCUs); promotion and strengthening of relationships with other conventions and relevant international organizations, institutions and agencies; and additional procedures or institutional mechanisms to assist the COP in regularly reviewing CCD implementation. The CST deliberated the creation of ad hoc panels, and its future programme of work. The CRIC met in an informal consultation to begin negotiation on the draft decisions.


REGIONAL COORDINATION UNITS: TUNISIA, CHILE, with several others, welcomed proposals on the RCUs. The EU supported regional coordination, but emphasized the need to avoid duplication. CHINA, with SYRIA, PAKISTAN and other delegations, argued for strengthening the three existing RCUs. MEXICO, UGANDA, the US, CANADA, and the ASIAN GROUP stressed the need to clearly define the terms of reference of the RCUs. NIGER suggested establishing RCUs in all regions, and the UKRAINE spoke on the possible functions of a coordination unit in Central and Eastern Europe. Several delegations requested more time to study the issue of RCUs.

RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHER RELEVANT CONVENTIONS AND INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS: The EU reminded Parties of the different mandates of the three Rio conventions and of the need to avoid duplication of work. He suggested a focus on forests and forest ecosystems as a common topic. ZAMBIA proposed involving the FAO, and the DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO suggested establishing an ad hoc group to define projects that would comply with synergy requirements. The CBD Secretariat explained the Convention's current activities pertaining to dry and sub-humid lands.

Maria Esther Bondanza (Argentina)

Bisaz Andri (Switzerland)

Askarn Omar (Morocco)

Above photos: (left to right) Inoke Ratukalou (Fiji); Andrei Pronin (Russian Federation); B. Hassan (Nigeria); COW Chair Ositadinma Anaedu (Nigeria)

Above photos: Mitzi Gurgel Valente de Costa of Brazil (left); CST Chair Valentini accompanied by members of the Secretariat.

Pavol Bielek (Slovakia)

Helmut Woehl (Germany)


CREATION OF AD HOC PANELS OF EXPERTS: A representative of the NGO community welcomed the working group's suggestion to include experts representing NGOs, local communities, farmers, and women as this would facilitate the implementation of local-level projects. Chair Valentini requested a small group to assist in drafting a decision on this issue.
FRANCE, CANADA, GERMANY, ITALY and NORWAY emphasized the importance of setting priorities in the GoE's work.

OTHER MATTERS: Chair Valentini said the contact group on traditional knowledge had decided that the Secretariat would invite Parties to express their views on this issue, which will be discussed at COP-7. An NGO representative emphasized the need for updating the list of experts, including local experts that would enable an analysis of which traditional knowledge should be updated and which projects should be implemented.

* Click here for a full text report on today's events

Thomas Schaaf (UNESCO)

Ana María Hernández (Colombia)

Above photos: Canada's Brian Abrahamson (2nd from left); and delegates from South Africa (right) make interventions during the CST session

Above photos: Delegate from Israel (left) and representatives of NGOs (right) participate in the CST session

Pastoralism and Mobility in the Drylands: Draft Agenda

Above photos (left-right): UNCCD Side Event panel members Hermann Grell (CILSS/GTZ advisor), Khadija Razavi (RIOD/CENESTA NGO), Maryam Niamir-Fuller (UNDP-GEF), Philip Dobie (UNDP/DDC), Frank Pinto (UNDP), Walter Lusigi (GEF SECRETARIAT), Tahirou Diao (Author of a Regional Annex), Juan Luis Merega (Argentine NGO)

Above photos: Participants in today's UNCCD side event, with UNDP-DDC's Dianna Kopanslay (far left)


In the Corridors


Above photos: (left-right) ENB's Richard Sherman and Dagmar Lohan; Anna Tengberg (UNEP), Ana Saez (GM), Alejandro Kilpatrick (GM) and Daya Bragante (UNEP); Abdou Dodo Mahamane (Niger)

Links to further information:  

*The UNCCD COP-6 official site

*ENB summary of the First Committee for the Review of Implementation of the Convention (CRIC):
1st week CRIC summary

2nd week CRIC summary

*ENB summary of COP 5

*The UNCCD COP-5 report

*Linkage's Coverage (audio and photos) of UNCCD Cop-5

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