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Late Breaking News on Habitat II

Last updated 20 June 1996 --

Habitat II concluded in the wee hours of Saturday morning after a second straight late night of sometimes rancorous negotiations. In the final Plenary session that did not begin until 9:30 p.m. Friday, delegates for a time dissolved a package agreement on final outstanding issues, with Arab states withdrawing consent to remove language on settlements in occupied territories. In the end, following threats by at least one delegation to oppose the adoption of the Habitat Agenda and Istanbul Declaration, both documents were adopted. A lengthy address by Habitat II Secretary-General Wally N'dow and a speech by Turkish President S�leyman Demirel brought the Conference to a close at approximately 3:30 a.m. Saturday.

Thursday's all-day informal negotiations had not given way to a formal session of Committee I until 6:30 a.m. Friday. At that point, without translation, delegates were unable to complete negotiations. A proposed package at that meeting included language that it is the duty of all States to promote and protect all human rights, while bearing in mind national and regional particularities and various historical, cultural and religious backgrounds and removed several references to reproductive and sexual health and health care.

Sound:Drafting Committee Chair Marcela Nicodemos of Brazil explains the agreement on housing rights and its implications for housing policies, plus other RealAudio interviews

Details on debate from the Conference's final day and a brief analysis of the Conference are available in the Earth Negotiations Bulletin's summary issue.

Details from the overnight session Thursday/Friday are in Friday's Earth Negotiations Bulletin from Habitat II.

Editor's Note: The ENB's photo coverage was unfortunately interrupted. Our roving camera was last seen touring Istanbul, all by itself in the back of a taxi where I left it. (-=- sw)
To catch up on the Conference to date, check out Late Breaking News from

Our live coverage of Habitat II ends with this edition and the summary issue. We have recorded RealAudio interviews, including wrap-ups from participants and observres, and daily issues in English and French of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin. Hope you've found it useful, comprehensible and occasionally entertaining.

ENB did not cover most of the Plenary statements. These statements and official press releasesare available on the Conference Secretariat's WWW site.

Here is the conference document that is being debated in Istanbul.


The Third Session of the Preparatory Committee for the UN Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) ended in New York during February. Although the spirit of negotiation was good, procedural bottlenecks and the volume of work to be finished produced less than favorable results.

The Earth Negotiations Bulletin prepared a comprehensive summary of the Third Session of the PrepCom, which includes an analysis of the process through PrepCom 3.

In addition, we have posted RealAudio recordings of the final statements If you have any late-breaking news, updates or recent material on Habitat II, send us e-mail at enb@igc.apc.org

We published daily issues of the Earth Negotiations Bulletinin French and English from New York. Our daily issues are 2000-word summaries of the official proceedings.

Here is a link to the UN's gopher for press releases on Human Settlements.