The Chairperson turned to the second subject of reflection concerning the outcome of the open-ended intergovernmental working group convened in October in 2011. He then invited the Chairperson of the working group, Mr Francesco Tafuri, to the podium. He recalled that the working group was organized following the Committee’s Decision 6.COM 15 in Bali in November 2011, which defined the mandate of the group, namely ‘to discuss what the right scale or scope of an element should be’. He thanked the Government of Japan for its generous contribution that allowed for the organization of the meeting, particularly the participation of 33 experts from developing countries.
The Secretary introduced the background document, adding that the four discussion papers prepared by the four experts were still available on the website. The summary records of the working group would also be made available in early 2013.
Introducing his oral report, the Chairperson of the Working Group, Mr Francesco Tafuri, reported that the main objective of the working group meeting was to provide an opportunity for States Parties to reflect upon a set of recurrent questions faced by the States, the Committee and its advisory bodies in recent years with regard to similarities among certain nominated elements or the inclusivity of others. The Chairperson recalled that the working group met at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris on 22 and 23 October 2012, which he presided together with Mr Sidi Traoré from Burkina Faso with the participation of more than 210 experts representing 76 States Parties, of which 33 experts from developing countries thanks to the generous financial support of Japan. Additionally, representatives of six States non-party to the Convention, category 2 centres, NGOs and a number of individual researchers attended as observers (Document 7.COM WG/7). The Chairperson recalled that in 2009 the Subsidiary Body requested that ‘submitting States clearly define the scale and scope of the proposed element in the nomination form’. In 2010, the Subsidiary Body expressed its concern faced with several similar nominations presented by the same submitting State that appeared to be the same element proposed as different manifestations, thus suggesting that States submit more inclusive elements. Repeating the concern in 2011, the Subsidiary Body noted that in several nominations to the Representative List, submitting States had not sufficiently demonstrated the differences between an element proposed and an already inscribed element that would justify a new inscription. The Subsidiary Body therefore wondered whether the contribution of the second inscription would respond to the objectives of visibility and awareness of the Representative List. The other issue concerned elements considered as being too generic, which included elements that were excessively inclusive and broad with multiple manifestations from the different domains of intangible cultural heritage. The Subsidiary Body in 2011 therefore recommended to find a balance between over-generalized elements and micro-elements whose specificity was unclear and therefore difficult to determine.
The Chairperson of the Working Group explained that in order to help frame the reflections of the working group, the Secretariat had asked four experts to prepare discussion papers organized around each of the four themes, which were then introduced by the authors. The excellent quality of the discussion papers was also noted. The first discussion paper by Rieks Smeets (Document ITH/12/7.COM WG/3) traced the thinking of the international community with regard to the concept of ‘element’ as it developed over the past four decades. The paper argued that the development of terminology for intangible cultural heritage was accompanied by changing notions of heritage, which was first raised within UNESCO in 1973. Although the decades saw a shift from an earlier preoccupation with documenting, protecting and promoting individual expressions of folklore to the living and changing character of intangible cultural heritage as a dynamic social process, it assumed that the safeguarding of the intangible cultural heritage of a given group or region should begin with the identification and documentation of specific manifestations, which led to the term ‘element’ becoming accepted as an international neutral term for such manifestations. The second discussion paper by Toshiyuko Kono(Document ITH/12/7.COM WG/4) analysed a large sample of the elements inscribed on the Lists since 2009 (72 of the total of 169 such elements) and attempted to characterize them in terms of the membership of the element itself in one or more domains and within ten parameters chosen to highlight the various characteristics of the communities and the different ways in which communities consider their elements. Given the tremendous diversity of the world’s intangible cultural heritage, the data not surprisingly revealed wide variation across each of the parameters. The paper suggested that the parameters proposed might be applied to determine whether two manifestations could be consolidated as a single element if judged to share the same attributes. The working group welcomed with interest the methodology, which was said to be practical for the authorities and the communities concerned. The third discussion paper by Ahmed Skounti (Document ITH/12/7.COM WG/5) concerned the question of similarity and possible practical mechanisms to treat ‘similar’ elements in relation to inscription on the lists of the Convention. The paper traced the development of the procedures for serial inscriptions of World Heritage properties and the extension of the scope of an already inscribed property. The current Operational Directives for the 2003 Convention foresees the possibility of re-inscription on an extended basis of elements already inscribed in order to include one or more States. The paper suggested that a similar process of re-inscription might be warranted for elements found entirely within the territory of a single State Party. As the consent and aspirations of the communities concerned are of paramount importance, there was the inevitable possibility of re-inscribing an element on a reduced basis or bifurcating a nomination at the request of the communities concerned. The working group found pertinent the comparisons with the 1972 Convention, but nevertheless found that serial nominations were better suited to tangible cultural heritage. The fourth discussion paper by Maria Cecilia Londres Fonseca (Document ITH/12/7.COM WG/6) examined various considerations at local, national or international levels that might determine the type of element to nominate for one of the lists or how to delimit an element when inventorying or preparing a safeguarding project. It drew upon examples and the extensive experience of Brazil in safeguarding and inventorying, as well as national registration and international listing. These Brazilian experiences revealed that although something might be right in one context it might not be for another, while respecting the wishes of the communities concerned in every aspect of the nomination process. Moreover, there was no one-size-fits-all model when determining the right scale or scope of an element.
The Chairperson of the Working Group recalled the lively debate that ensued on the second day, which was devoted to synthesizing the questions and considerations so that the working group could report to the Committee. In the ensuing discussion, many experts considered that it was preferable not to refer to ‘similar’ elements given that each manifestation was specific and unique to a given community. Experts suggested instead that reference be made to ‘shared heritage’ and to ‘elements with shared characteristics’; others invoked the notion of ‘family’ as a potentially useful one. Certain experts considered that multinational files should be further promoted to highlight ‘shared intangible cultural heritage’. The issue of terminology was recurrent throughout the meeting and it was deemed essential that each State Party translate, adapt or develop the terminology of the Convention at the national level so that it can be clearly explained to the communities and other partners. For the purpose of implementing the Convention, a larger and more complex cultural reality often needed to be segmented, classified and labelled. The scale and scope of an element depended then on the particular context of the Convention’s mechanisms at the national and international levels. In this regard, the experts concurred that a one-size-fits-all solution should not be sought, but rather it should question the appropriate scale and scope when drawing up an inventory, and the scale and scope of an element most suited for promoting intangible cultural heritage in general (in line with the purpose of the Representative List), as well as the suitable scale and scope of an element requiring urgent safeguarding (in line with the purpose of the Urgent Safeguarding List). The participants agreed that the scale and scope of an element depended on the different contexts of the mechanisms in the implementation of the Convention at both national and international levels. The working group therefore recommended that States Parties be attentive as to what scale is appropriate for what purposes.
The Chairperson of the Working Group also wished to draw attention to the fact that a number of States deemed that the communities best know the most appropriate scale and scope of a specific context. In this respect, States had a particularly important task to explain to the communities the purposes for which a certain element of their intangible cultural heritage is of interest. The working group also gave substantial attention to the question of extending the scope of an existing inscription on one of the Convention’s lists, concurring in the idea that a provision be made in the Operational Directives for the extension of an inscription within a single State Party, complementing the existing provision for one or more States to join an existing inscription. Such a directive would help States Parties define the appropriate scale and scope of an element corresponding to the objectives of the list concerned. The working group reached a consensus on the principle of welcoming the possibility of enlarging existing inscriptions. Certain experts expressed concern on the dissuasive aspects of the procedure for enlargement of multinational nomination files. Other experts believed that the extension of an element should not be a simple administrative exercise but rather involve broad consultations with all the communities concerned and obtain their free, prior and informed consent on the new extended nomination. The Committee could also consider the possibility that one or more of the communities concerned might withdraw their consent from an inscription of either a multinational or national file. The Chairperson reiterated his thanks to the government of Japan for its generous voluntary contribution to the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund that enabled the meeting to take place, as well as the four experts for their work on the discussion papers, and the participants for their spirit of openness.
The Chairperson thanked Mr Tafuri for the report and his excellent leadership during the working group. He also congratulated the working group for its fruitful discussions, adding that it was crucial to reflect and exchange opinions separately from the Committee and other decision-making organs.
The delegation of Japan also wished to thank Mr Tafuri for the report and his excellent leadership, as well as the four international experts for their presentations. The delegation spoke of the fruitful discussions on the right scale and scope of an element and the mechanisms to treat similar elements. With regard to the procedure of extending an element, as provided for in paragraph 14 of the Operational Directives, the delegation welcomed the consensus in the working group that such procedures should be broadened to include elements found within the territory of a single State Party, which would allow States Parties to find elements of an appropriate scale or scope.
The Chairperson reminded the Committee that the issue of extensions would be covered under item 13.c.
The delegation of Latvia highly appreciated the report as it reflected well the essential conclusions of the working group, and thanked Japan for making the meeting possible. Due to the differences in linguistics and policy frameworks, the delegation found it evident that national discourses on intangible cultural heritage should be developed in each State independently. The delegation found that the questions outlined in paragraph 10 of the document were good points of reference. With regard to the 10 parameters elaborated by Prof. Kono, the delegation found them useful in defining communities and the right scale and scope of elements. The delegation also supported the notion of ‘shared heritage’, which had a huge potential to create new platforms for building intercultural dialogue among countries that go beyond making lists.
The delegation of Indonesia thanked Mr Tafuri for his chairmanship of the working group and his excellent summary, adding that the meeting had stimulated those present to reflect upon on the important issue of scale and scope of an element.
The Chairperson remarked that States Parties seemed to be aware of the importance of defining properly proportioned elements based on their specific purpose, adding that the communities themselves had to be the primary actors in the identification process. The Chairperson then turned to the draft decision and its adoption as a whole. The delegation of Indonesia agreed with the adoption of the decision in its entirety.
With no objections, the Chairperson declared adopted Decision 11.COM 13.b.
ITEM 13.c OF THE AGENDA:
REFLECTION ON THE PROCEDURE FOR EXTENDED INSCRIPTION OF AN ELEMENT THAT IS ALREADY INSCRIBED
Decision 7.COM 13.c
Introducing the item, the Chairperson recalled that at its fourth session in June 2012, the General Assembly requested that the Committee begin a process of reflection on the ‘procedure for extended inscription of an element already inscribed’ and that the Committee ‘report on it to the next session of the General Assembly’ (Resolution 4.GA 5). It was noted that Mr Tafuri had already introduced some reflections on this item.
Presenting the background, the Secretary explained that following the discussion by the first Subsidiary Body and the Committee in 2009, the Operational Directives were amended in 2010, particularly paragraph 14, to include a provision to extend a nomination to include one or more States Parties. The principles are that the new inscription replaces the original inscription, but if the Committee decides not to inscribe the extended element, the original inscription would remain intact so that existing inscriptions were not placed at risk. The 2009 Subsidiary Body suggested that submitting States share a common approach and not simply add a State Party to the existing file. It also suggested that all the States Parties concerned should jointly submit a new nomination, as reflected in paragraph 14 of the Operational Directives. At its sixth session, the Committee began to consider the inscription on an extended basis of an element already inscribed by the same State Party. The issue was also discussed during the open-ended intergovernmental working group, which largely agreed that the procedure should be broadened to include elements found within the territory of a single State Party. As reported by Mr Zebec, the 2012 Subsidiary Body examined two dossiers that raised a number of questions regarding extended nominations that might be submitted in the future (Document ITH/12/7.COM/11), such as: i) determining information common to all States involved in the multinational file as well as information specific to each country; ii) the extent of the information provided in the nominations concerning the specific situation of the element and its community in the States Parties newly joining; iii) the free, prior, and informed consent of all the communities concerned; and iv) potential mechanisms within the concerned States Parties to ensure proper coordination of multinational nominations. Based on the history, the reflections of the open-ended working group, and the concrete experience of the Subsidiary Body, the draft decision proposed two options: A) to further reflect before addressing specific recommendations to the General Assembly; B) to request the Secretariat to propose specific operational directives for your examination in the eighth session, so they can be proposed to the fifth session of the General Assembly in June 2014. It was noted however that both options could be adopted, as had previously occurred in Decision 7.COM 12.
The Chairperson remarked that the participants of the working group were particularly concerned that the extension should not simply be an administrative exercise and required comprehensive consultation with the communities concerned. The working group also considered that the Committee might wish to think about the possible reduction in the scope of an element, the size of the community, or the number of States Parties adhering to an inscription, even though it had not been explicitly asked to do so by the General Assembly.
Thanking the Secretary for the explanation, the delegation of Indonesia remarked that extensions were already occurring, i.e. as seen in the falconry file with two new joining States Parties, which suggested that further reflection was perhaps unnecessary and that Option B was therefore more pertinent. However, the delegation agreed to unite the two options. The delegation of Japan also supported the adoption of both options.
The delegation of Greece believed that the next step would involve concrete options and thus supported Option B. The delegation spoke of the consent of communities as a delicate matter and recommended having clear formalized guidance in this regard, particularly in cases where communities did not consent to an extension.
The delegation of Belgium favoured combining the two options, adding that the Research Forum and the NGO Forum could be invited to reflect on and contribute to the subject.
The delegation of Spain also supported the proposal to combine both options, adding that common sense could be applied in developing the procedures so that they encouraged extensions by remaining reasonable and least burdensome as possible.
The delegation of Grenada was also in favour of merging both options and having clear draft directives for the extension of an element on both a multinational and national basis, as well as a reduction of an inscription.
Noting a consensus to merge the two options, the Chairperson moved to the draft decision.
The delegation of Grenada wished to add possible reduction as a point for reflection in Option A.
The Chairperson concurred that in light of the discussion and the findings of the working group, a reflection on a possible reduction should be introduced.
The delegation of Belgium reiterated that the NGO Forum at the next Committee session could be invited to also reflect on the issues, and proposed, ‘Invites the NGO Forum to submit a report on reflections about this topic’.
The Chairperson reiterated Grenada’s and Belgium’s proposal, which read, ‘Decides to continue its reflection on the procedure for extended inscription of an element already inscribed or its possible reduction at its eighth session and in conformity with the discussion of the open-ended intergovernmental working group and invites the Subsidiary Body and the Consultative Body to address this topic in their 2013 reports to the Committee and invites the NGO Forum to submit a report on reflections about this topic’.
The delegation of Peru supported the amendment by Grenada, but did not agree with Belgium’s amendment to convene an NGO Forum on the subject, suggesting that the category 2 centres be invited to provide their contributions in this regard.
The delegation of Nigeria agreed that category 2 centres should be invited to reflect on the issue, and suggested deleting the latter part of the sentence.
The Chairperson noted the support for Grenada’s amendment.
The delegation of Peru wished to include a reference to category 2 centres and their contribution to the reflection process.
The delegation of Belgium suggested adding both the NGO Forum and category 2 centres.
The delegation of Spain suggested also inviting States with experience in extensions.
The Secretary remarked on the substantial work involved in collating the input of the many contributors, and suggested that proposals and recommendations by category 2 centres and States Parties be channelled through the members of the Committee, which would then be submitted to the Secretariat by a given date so that it may draw up the draft recommendations. In this way, the proposals and suggestions can be sorted so that a consensus could emerge. By nature of its non-governmental status, the recommendation would not extend to the NGO Forum.
The delegation of Nigeria reiterated that it wished to delete the sentence since contributions should in any case transit through Committee members.
The delegation of Indonesia concurred with Nigeria that Peru’s and Belgium’s amendment could be deleted, not least because item 16 would deal specifically with NGOs.
The delegation of Peru agreed that the sentence should be omitted. The delegation of Belgium withdrew its amendment.
The Chairperson concurred with the decision, as a decision along the same lines had already been adopted. Noting that there were no further comments or objections to paragraph 4 [corresponding to Option A] and the new paragraph 5 [corresponding to Option B], the Vice-Chairperson moved to the adoption of the draft decision as a whole. With no objections, the Chairperson declared adopted Decision 7.COM 13.c.
The Chairperson reiterated his thanks to Mr Tafuri for his work as Chairperson.
ITEM 13.d OF THE AGENDA:
REFLECTION ON THE USE OF THE EMBLEM OF THE CONVENTION
Decision 7.COM 13.d
The Chairperson recalled that the item on a reflection on the use of the emblem of the Convention had been included in the agenda at the request of Belgium.
The delegation of Belgium explained that it sought to strike the right balance between raising awareness on intangible cultural heritage at the national level (without creating extra work for States Parties and the Secretariat) and the obligation to protect the credibility of the Convention by monitoring the proper use of the emblem. The delegation remarked on the frustration among stakeholders caused by a lack of information about and misunderstanding of the attribution of the emblem. For example, it was not known by Belgian authorities that the emblem could be used for a longer but limited time for a particular event or activity. The delegation did not agree with the proposal by the Secretariat to delegate the national use of the emblem to National Commissions for UNESCO, and thus submitted a proposal that took into account two aspects: i) the need for clear communication with States Parties on the use of the emblem; and ii) the need for proper reporting on the use of the emblem in line with Art. 15014 of the Operational Directives.
Representative of the Secretary, Mr Proschan explained that the Secretariat was aware of the frustration encountered by a number of requestors who wished to use the emblem of the Convention but were not authorized to do so. It was also regrettable that the Secretariat was unable to authorize its use due to late or technical deficiencies in the requests. The document proposed was therefore an effort to propose a mechanism resulting from the correspondence with Belgium, as well as the Secretariat’s experience in processing requests. Mr Proschan informed the Committee that a total of 27 inquiries had been received so far: 14 formal requests of which 12 had been granted. Thus, two formal requests were denied and 13 more were turned down at the initial inquiry stage. Mr Proschan explained that a request to use the emblem that was completely inappropriate would be immediately reported to the submitting State by the Secretariat. Also, should the inquiry come less than 90 days before its planned use, the Secretariat would promptly decline the request. Thirteen requests out of a total of 27 received were thus declined at the initial screening stage. Twelve out of the 14 formal requests were however successful. Two requests from Belgium and Croatia were declined because they did not comply with the Operational Directives. Of the formal requests approved, the average time from receipt to the Director General’s signature was 42 calendar days or 6 weeks. The fastest being 26 days and the slowest 68 days – though still below the 90-day benchmark. Mr Proschan further explained that although the 6-week delay might appear long, it was by no means unprecedented. One third of the requests were for ongoing or permanent activities and were not punctual, as stipulated in the Operational Directives, as highlighted by Belgium. Two-fifths arrived too late, others lacked the basic information required, and one-tenth were for inappropriate commercial activities. Noting that half of the original inquiries were declined because they were inappropriate, Belgium had requested the Secretariat to increase efforts to disseminate clear instructions and conditions on the use of the Convention emblem, currently available on the Convention website. Nevertheless, the Secretariat welcomed any suggestions that would improve visibility in the dissemination of information on the associated procedures.
The delegation of Brazil felt that it was a mistake to link the Convention emblem to the UNESCO emblem in the Operational Directives, which meant that the use of the emblem was somewhat restricted. The delegation believed that the emblem should be used and seen as many places as possible so as to increase the visibility of intangible cultural heritage. The delegation agreed with the proposal by Belgium but that greater reflection was also necessary.
The delegation of Grenada agreed that greater visibility was needed, but that misuse of the emblem should be controlled and monitored through an appropriate mechanism. The delegation was aware that other conventions were not linked to the UNESCO logo, adding that the Committee could reflect on this issue and bring it to the attention of the General Assembly.
Moving to the adoption of the draft decision, the Chairperson invited Spain and Belgium to present their respective amendments.
The delegation of Spain had submitted an amendment to the Secretariat that would appear after the current paragraph 4, which dealt with the concern of over-commercialization and the organization of a working group to discuss the issue.
The delegation of Belgium thanked the Secretariat for the information given on the emblem requests, adding that the low number of requests only strengthened its resolve to propose the amendment, which would delete the existing paragraph 5 and introduce two new paragraphs 6 and 7. Paragraph 6 sought better communication with States Parties on the procedures for the use of the emblem, and paragraph 7 reminded States Parties of their reporting requirements in this regard, which may also be included in the periodic reports.
The delegation of Indonesia spoke of its surprise at the two amendments presented, as they contravened the present Operational Directives, particularly as the issue of the emblem had been thoroughly debated since 2007. The delegation was satisfied with the explanation by the Secretariat in that those correctly applying to use the emblem are granted the authorization. The delegation suggested that those wishing to revise the Operational Directives should propose to discuss the issue at another meeting, but that an open-ended intergovernmental working group was unnecessary.
The delegation of Nigeria welcomed any productive discussion as well as the open-ended working group initiative, but that the source of the financial voluntary contributions for the meeting should be explicit specified.
The delegation of Brazil felt that there was some confusion between paragraphs 116 and 117 of the Operational Directives (on commercial activities and commercial misappropriation respectively) relative to the second part of the paragraph with regard to the use of the emblem. The delegation welcomed the opportunity of the working group to discuss commercial activities related to intangible cultural heritage, but felt that the decision was not the right place to initiate the recommendation.
The delegation of Grenada wondered which amendments were under discussion.
The Chairperson proposed to move to the draft decision on a paragraph-by-paragraph basis and open the debate when comments were forthcoming.
The delegation of Czech Republic thanked Belgium for its proposal to set some clear rules with regard to the use of the emblem, but felt that it might complicate the situation even further, suggesting that the directives be clearly highlighted and recalled.
The Chairperson turned to paragraphs 1–3 of the draft decision, which were duly adopted.
With regard to the new paragraph 4, the delegation of Grenada found the word ‘complex’ unnecessary, as the procedures would not be ‘complex’ once clearly understood. The delegation of Indonesia supported Grenada’s revision to the paragraph.
With no further comments or objections the Chairperson pronounced the new paragraph 4 adopted, and turned to paragraph 5 and the amendment proposed by Spain.
The delegation of Latvia supported Spain’s proposal, but wished to delete the latter part of the sentence after ‘Convention’.
The delegation of Grenada did not see the need for an open-ended working group to further discuss the issue when paragraphs 116 and 117 dealt specifically with the commercial activities related to intangible cultural heritage.
Agreeing with Latvia’s proposal, the delegation of Peru welcomed Spain’s initiative for an open-ended working group, but that the latter part of the sentence should be dealt with elsewhere.
The delegation of Brazil proposed the following,’ to discuss about the use of the emblem of the Convention, including its commercialization’.
The delegation of Czech Republic wished to include a sentence that reminded States Parties to reflect on the definition of the use of the emblem and then convene the working group. However, with time and resource limitations, the delegation wondered whether it was a good time to convene the meeting.
The delegation of Indonesia supported Grenada earlier amendment to delete the paragraph based on the fact that the provision was already contained in the Operational Directives.
The delegation of Belgium clarified that its amendment was based on the circulation of information and that it did not wish to change the current Operational Directives. It therefore proposed to delete the paragraph on the working group meeting, but if maintained it should be placed as the final paragraph and begin with ‘encourages’, while keeping the reference to voluntary contributions.
Referring to paragraphs 140 and 143 of the Operational Directives, the delegation of Madagascar noted that the conditions covering the commercial use of the emblem were already covered and defined. It therefore did not consider the moment to convene the working group as opportune.
The delegation of Spain explained that its amendment addressed a voiced concern on the issue, which was not fully covered in the Operational Directives, but was willing to withdraw its proposal.
The delegation of Azerbaijan also supported the position by Grenada and Indonesia.
The Chairperson turned to the new paragraph 5 proposed by Belgium.
The delegation of Brazil wished to retain the original text that requested the Secretariat to propose possible amendments to the Operational Directives, which would have benefitted from inputs from the working group, but to stop at ‘session’. The delegation also suggested alternative phrasing to the Belgium proposal, which would read, ‘Requests the Secretariat to make available the information to the States Parties on the use of the emblem of the Convention’.
The Chairperson noted that the proposal would become the new paragraph 6. The delegation of Belgium accepted the new wording.
The delegation of Grenada wondered whether the Secretariat was clear on how it would be expected to ‘make available the information’ since the information was already online and contained in the Operational Directives. The delegation also supported the amendment by Brazil to stop at ‘session’, i.e. deleting ‘in order that such amended Directives might facilitate the use of the Convention emblem alongside the logo of a National Commission for UNESCO (which incorporates the UNESCO logo)’, adding that the two emblems were already linked, particularly as the emblem was known with the UNESCO logo.
The Legal Adviser clarified that the Convention emblem and the UNESCO logo were already protected by the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. Under the Operational Directives, the Convention’s emblem should be associated with the UNESCO logo. Any dissociation required a change in the Operational Directives, which had been largely debated at the General Conference and the General Assembly. Referring to Belgium’s proposal, the Legal Adviser explained that the dissemination of information was a general request and that the Secretariat could work on ways to facilitate its circulation. He considered however that it was too early to discuss the issue, even though the Secretariat was available to entertain suggestions. Nevertheless, the Legal Adviser found no judicial impediment to the amendments proposed.
With regard to the question of information dissemination, the Secretary suggested that States Parties manage their own national internal communication, while the Secretariat disseminated the information, i.e. through the website, which was already available as a step-by-step guide. Nonetheless, the Secretariat was open to any suggestion that would improve the circulation of information.
The Chairperson then turned to the new paragraph 5 proposed by Belgium. The delegation of China supported the new paragraph, but explained that the mention of ‘States Parties, national commissions and/or duly designated authorities’ was incorrect since national commissions and authorities are within States Parties, suggesting instead ‘States Parties through National Commissions’.
The Chairperson thanked China for the clarification, and with no further comments or objections, paragraph 5 as amended was adopted.
With regard to paragraph 6 proposed by Brazil, the delegation of Belgium wished to clarify whether the Committee sought to facilitate the use of the emblem or wish to have further discussion on its use. The delegation of Brazil clarified that the proposal was to maintain the original wording of the draft decision and thus referred to facilitating the use of the emblem.
The delegation of Grenada remarked that the Committee had not accepted the concrete proposal in the original paragraph, and that any revision of the Operational Directives required a thorough discussion in order to guide any possible modifications. The delegation proposed stopping at ‘present session’.
The delegation of Madagascar remarked that the Secretariat was already ‘requested’ in paragraph 5 to provide clear instructions on the use of the emblem, which would involve a summary of paragraphs 140–143 of the Operational Directives, such that paragraph 6 was contradictory. The Chairperson agreed with Madagascar that there was a slight contradiction in the two paragraphs.
The delegation of Peru remarked that paragraph 5 already requested the Secretariat to provide clear information, whose feedback would help the Secretariat propose possible amendments, suggesting that the proposal be deleted.
In light of the discussion, the delegation of Brazil withdrew its proposal.
With no further comments or objections, the Chairperson declared adopted Decision 7.COM 13.d.
Following a number of announcements, the Chairperson adjourned the session.