group photoGeneva, Switzerland, 19-20 July 2012 – The sustained pace at which United Nations resolutions are generated nowadays requires from practitioners in the multilateral context that they be trained and remain regularly attuned to the way these essential components of international governance are negotiated, drafted and adopted within the UN system.

It is in response to this pressing need that UNITAR hosted a two-day workshop destined to diplomats whose duties regularly involve close dealings with UN resolutions, providing explanations about how they come about, solutions to browse the extensive resolution battery available to this day either online or in libraries, and tools to better decipher the complex voting mechanism of a newborn resolution at the Security Council. Mainly comprised of diplomats from Geneva-based Permanent Missions, the group was one of passionate, dedicated, and knowledge-thirsty individuals who contributed to the great dynamics experienced throughout the training. The workshop lacked no interaction with our distinguished facilitator, Ambassador Shola Omoregie, whose many years spent working in the depths of the UN headquarters in New York, at the forefront and behind the scenes of the General Assembly and Security Council make him an uncontested reference for the new generation of diplomats.

The strict rules of procedure of both the General Assembly and Security Council were covered and compared as a means to introduce the participants to the often unknown practices of these major organs, in an attempt to demonstrate that an extensive awareness of the functioning of the UN are an imperative towards effectively defending one’s cause in the international arena. The workshop remained ideally balanced between the delivery of lectures and that of practical exercises proposed, equally addressing skills pertaining to purely negotiating and purely drafting practices, and designed for maximum immersion in scrupulously paralleling the reality and official rules of a UN resolution adoption setting.

Before the workshop came to a close, the participants each expressed their wish to remain closely in touch with knowledgeable Ambassador Omoregie in order to share further experience and instructive anecdotes. In agreeing they had learned much over a short period of time, they felt all the more empowered to recycle their new skills to serve their respective Missions. As part of this end of July training series around UN resolutions, the Ambassador pursued his journey around the globe to South Africa with aim to train another group of diplomats confirming that the interest for the core of multilateral norms and practices is indeed without borders.