The Disarmament Commission elected Egypt as one of the five Vice Chairs for its 2018 substantive session today Sunday. The Commission elected Gillian Bird (Australia) as Chair. Upon assuming her post، she commended Gabriela Martinic (Argentina) for her leadership of the 2017 substantive session. She also thanked the Bureau، Chairs of the Working Groups and delegations for their constructive spirit and cooperation during the previous session which، she said، made it possible for the Commission to overcome 17 years of impasse and unanimously agree on a set of recommendations in the Working Group on conventional weapons. The Commission went on to elect Bassem Hassan (Egypt)، Mustapha Abbani (Algeria)، Nirupam Dev Nath (Bangladesh)، Surendra Thapa (Nepal) and Volodymyr Leschenko (Ukraine) as Vice-Chairs by acclamation. Diedre Mills (Jamaica) was elected Rapporteur، also by acclamation.
Regarding filling three remaining Bureau vacancies، the Chair appealed to the relevant regional groups to finalize consultations to enable the Commission to begin its substantive work as scheduled.
Noting that the Commission’s new three-year cycle would — unusually — lead right up to the 2020 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons، the Chair encouraged delegations to consider making the most of the opportunity to contribute to that entity’s outcomes. The Disarmament Commission will reconvene on Monday، 2 April، to take up unfinished organizational business and to begin its substantive session.