The First Committee concludes its work for 2023 amidst the horror of genocide

Against the backdrop of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine; rising global economic inequalities, ecological injustices, and geopolitical tensions; and the pouring of trillions of dollars into militarism and war, the President of the UN General Assembly named trust and solidarity the theme of the Assembly’s work this year. One week into the First Committee’s session, Hamas attacked Israeli civilians and Israel unleashed a horrific war of collective punishment upon Palestinians. Many Western governments defended Israel’s actions and provided weapons to it, even as their citizens took to the streets in protest. Each of these developments are related. Each relies upon previous impunities to normalise war crimes and crimes against humanity until even genocide can take place in full view of the entire world and those who stand against it are criminalised. The Orwellian reality of the rhetorical “rules-based international order” is perhaps most exposed at the United Nations. And this year’s First Committee session was no model of “solidarity among nations.”

Get the full scoop on what happened at this year's First Committee with our First Committee Monitor, which contains weekly editorials and reports on discussions on all topics of disarmament and international security. Throughout the Committee's work from 2 October to 3 November, we also published all available statements, resolutions, voting records, and explanations of vote on our website.