Model United Nations, also known as Model UN or MUN, is an extra-curricular activity in which students typically roleplay delegates to the United Nations and simulate UN committees.
The Fourth Committee of the General Assembly of the United Nations is the Special Political and Decolonization Committee, otherwise known as SPECPOL. Established in 1993, SPECPOL is the combination of the Decolonization Committee (former ly the Fourth Committee) and the Special Political Committee. This committee’s inception took place in 1990 when the United Nations established 1990 -2000 as the “International Decade for the Eradication of Colonialism.” This was particularly important considering at the time of the United Nation’s creation, 750 million people lived in what would be considered to be a colonized territory. Over eighty former colonies have become independent since 1945. Check out the Country Matrix Here
Establishment of a permanent government in Tibet.
SPECPOL includes all 193 Member States, uniting to alleviate developing countries’ dependencies on former colonizing powers. The committee derives power from its mandate in Chapter XI of the United Nations Charter, which commits to the preservation of the rights and dignities of people living in non-self-governing territories. The committee passes resolutions with suggestions on the optimal ways for the United Nations and member states to address the issues of colonized people. According to its mandate, the Fourth Committee can discuss issues such as self-determination, decolonization, and peacekeeping efforts. While SPECPOL was derived from the Disarmament and International Security Committee, it takes on issues that the First Committee does not address, as well as looking at topics with a wider scope. Unlike other UN committees, SPECPOL shines a spotlight on issues pertaining to occupation, colonization, and subjugation, with the primary goal of making all countries independent and self-sufficient from outside powers. Also according to its mandate, SPECPOL is not able to take military action and many of its resolutions are passed along as suggestions to the Security Council, which ultimately decides whether or not the plan of action will be carried through.
The Special Political and Decolonization committee holds a very unique role in the United Nations. While other main committees aim to resolve current global issues, SPECPOL concerns itself with healing countries from the lasting impact of their troubling histories. The committee’s foremost goal is to ensure that all countries enjoy the benefits of the independence to which they are entitled, and only when all countries are economically, culturally, and socially liberated can the world move forward.
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