UNESCAP adopted a resolution initiated by Turkmenistan paving the way for the establishment of the United Nations Special Programme for the Aral Sea Basin (UNSPAS)

On May 19 2023 The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) unanimously adopted a resolution entitled “Consideration of the modalities for the establishment of the United Nations special programme for the Aral Sea basin” during its 79th session in Bangkok, Thailand.

This resolution initiated by Turkmenistan marks a significant milestone as it represents the first time a United Nations resolution has been dedicated to the UN Special Programs for the Aral Sea Basin (UNSPAS). It serves as a practical implementation of the decisions made during the Summit of the Heads of the Founding States of the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea, which occurred in the Avaza National Tourist Zone in Turkmenbashi on August 24, 2018. Subsequent international consultations on the development of UNSPAS have also contributed to this resolution.

As per the adopted resolution, the ESCAP Secretariat will present the draft modalities, format, and working methods for the Special Program during the 81st session of the Commission. This step is crucial in advancing the creation of a multilateral mechanism that aims to systematically and consistently address the issues surrounding the Aral Sea catastrophe within the framework of the United Nations.

Additionally, the resolution mandates ESCAP to organize a workshop on preventing and mitigating natural disasters in the water basin of the Aral Sea with the relevant organizations that have the necessary technical expertise in the matter.

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