New York, September 21, 2010
The World Youth Alliance does not promote the Statement of Youth to the UN and the World (the statement) of the “International Youth Coalition” as drafted in Leon, Mexico on August 26th. There are a number of misleading claims and problems associated with this document and the newsletters sent for its promotion.
1. The International Youth Coalition claims that it will “present this statement to the UN General Assembly.” There is no clear procedure for this to actually take place, and therefore this is misinformation. NGOs are not given any opportunity to present statements at the UN General Assembly, especially not NGOs without ECOSOC consultative status (as is the case for the “International Youth Coalition”).
2. Misleading information has been used to promulgate this document. The World Youth Conference was not an official UN Conference, and was solely the initiative of the Mexican Government. It did receive funding from UNFPA and UNICEF. It is important to understand that the documents that come out of this conference are not UN Documents and therefore will not be “presented at the UN” this week at the MDG Summit or at the General Assembly this Fall. The Guanajuato Declaration (not the NGO Declaration) could be read by the Mexican Government during the speaking time allotted during the MDG Summit this week. It is still unclear whether the NGO Statement has any legitimacy at all in the international context. It is not attached to the outcome document of the World Youth Conference (the “Guanajuato Declaration”) and, as we know, was drafted by some 300 young people who were chosen by the UNFPA rather than governmental delegates.
3. It is also important to realize that the two documents promulgated by the WYC – the Guanajuato Declaration and the World Parliamentary Forum on Youth Declaration – are very good documents and were legitimately drafted and voted on at the World Youth Conference by government representatives. This fact has been forgotten by the International Youth Coalition, who has missed an important opportunity to promote these valuable outcomes. These Declarations should not be de-legitimatized like the NGO Statement.
Therefore, while the World Youth Alliance expresses its opposition to the NGO Statement promulgated at the WYC, we welcome the legitimate outcome documents that were agreed at the World Parliamentary Forum. We will wait to see if the NGO Statement is even acknowledged this week at the MDG Summit (unlikely) and issue our own statement after the fact to individual delegations. World Youth Alliance staff and members participated in the entire process of the negotiations of the Guanajuato Declaration and the World Parliamentary Forum on Youth Declaration, and are proud to promote them to delegations as an expression of the desires of many young people around the world.