Information Note on the Inter-Sessional Meeting of the Sub-Committee of the Whole on International Protection
1. At its forty-third session, the Executive Committee of the High Commissioner's Programme decided to request the High Commissioner to convene at least one inter-sessional meeting of the Sub-Committee of the Whole on International Protection to continue discussion on relevant protection issues. The Executive Committee also decided to request the High Commissioner to report to the Committee at its forty-fourth session on progress in the deliberations of the Sub-Committee.
2. After consultations with delegations and the Chairman of the Executive Committee, the High Commissioner convened an inter-sessional meeting which took place on 17 and 18 May 1993. At that meeting, the focus of the Sub-Committee's deliberations was on a number of practical protection issues which form part of the daily experience of States and UNHCR in providing international protection to refugees. In this context, the main items discussed were the physical protection of refugees as well as the specific problem of sexual violence against refugee women and girls. The agenda (EC/1993/SCP/CRP.1) also included an informal overview of regional developments in refugee protection. The draft report of the meeting is submitted to the Sub-Committee in document EC/1993/SCP/CRP.5.
3. Judging from the interventions of a number of delegations, it appeared that the choice of current and practical protection issues as the main agenda items for the inter-sessional meeting, allowing for discussions on appropriate action-oriented responses, was much appreciated by delegations. The active participation and valuable contributions of a number of delegations from all regions of the world further testify to the usefulness and value of convening inter-sessional meetings. The Office would therefore recommend that the Sub-Committee continue to meet at least once between its regular meetings and would be interested to learn whether this recommendation meets with the approval of delegations.