The Conference on Disarmament, the world's single multilateral forum for disarmament negotiations, will hold the first public plenary of its 2019 session on Monday, 21 January at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.
The session will open under the presidency of Ukraine. The presidency of the Conference rotates among its Member States according to the English alphabetical order, with each president holding office for four working weeks. In addition to Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the United States, Venezuela, Viet Nam and Zimbabwe will also hold the presidency during 2019. The three parts of the 2019 session of the Conference will take place from 21 January to 29 March for the first part, from 13 May to 28 June for the second part, and from 29 July to 13 September for the third part.
The first plenary meeting will start at 10 a.m. on Monday in the Council Chamber in the presence of Michael Møller, Director-General of the United Nations Office at Geneva and Secretary-General of the Conference on Disarmament.
In accordance with art. 27 of its rules of procedure, the Conference on Disarmament shall adopt its agenda for the year at the beginning of each annual session. “In doing so, the Conference shall take into account the recommendations made to it by the United Nations General Assembly, the proposals presented by Member States of the Conference, and the decisions of the Conference." The rules of procedure of the Conference also provide that, on the basis of its agenda, the Conference, “at the beginning of its annual session, shall establish its programme of work, which will include a schedule of its activities for that session, taking also into account the recommendations, proposals and decisions referred to in rule 27.”
The Conference on Disarmament has been unable to start negotiating new instruments for more than 20 years due to the absence of consensus. The agenda and programme of work of the Conference has the following items on it: cessation of the nuclear arms race and nuclear disarmament; prevention of nuclear war, including all related matters; prevention of an arms race in outer space; effective international arrangements to assure non-nuclear-weapon States against the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons; new types of weapons of mass destruction and new systems of such weapons, radiological weapons; comprehensive programme of disarmament; and transparency in armaments.
Member States of the Conference
The 65 members of the Conference are Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Republic of Korea, Romania, Russian Federation, Senegal, Slovakia, Spain, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Venezuela, Viet Nam and Zimbabwe.