Committees

Dear Delegates,

On behalf of the Department of Academics, I hereby extend my warmest welcome to all the delegates participating in Pan Asia Model United Nations 2016. In order to provide you with the most extraordinary Model United Nations experience, I, along with my team, have been fully dedicated to the preparations for the conference, and we sincerely hope that each and every one of you will enjoy the high-level debates in the upcoming conference.

Since 2010, Pan Asia Model United Nations has strived to be the leading platform to engage delegates with current and future challenges concerning the international community. Coming to its 6th session, PAMUN has not only grown in size, but also expanded the depth and scope of topic discussions in order for delegates to counter the constantly evolving issues and conflicts happening around the globe. One thing that remains constant is our dedication in providing an environment for students coming from all over the world to collaborate in generating new ideas and formulating solutions to dire issues of global concern.

This year, we offer eight committees that specialize in various fields of international affairs to address pressing issues in our global community. Aside from UN-affiliated organs, which include United Nations Security Council (UNSC), General Assembly First Committee (Disarmament and International Security Committee, DISEC), General Assembly Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee, SOCHUM), United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC), Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), and International Monetary Fund (IMF), we have also set up a regional committee, the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), as well as a Chinese Committee, which is the International Bureau of Education (IBE). The variety of our committee choices will cater to both first-time and experienced delegates, and provide delegates with the opportunity to explore the diversity of perspectives and outlooks within the Model United Nations society.

It is with distinct honor and privilege that we once again welcome all of you to participate in Pan Asia Model United Nations 2016. Should there be any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us through email. We look forward to seeing you this December!

Sincerely,
Natasha Chou
Under-Secretary-General of Academics
Citi Pan Asia Model United Nations 2016
ac.panasiamun@gmail.com

ASEAN Regional Forum(ARF)

The ASEAN Regional Forum, convened annually after the ASEAN Ministerial Meeting, is a multilateral consultative dialogue on the creation of a “more predictable and constructive pattern of relations” in the Asia-Pacific region. Participants, consisting of ASEAN member states and various interested parties around the world, arrange meetings between different levels of government to endorse the ASEAN’s Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia as a regional code of conduct, and to enshrine the concept of preventive diplomacy as a regional normality.

In order to facilitate political and security cooperation, members of the ARF have cooperated on areas such as Disaster Relief, Counter-terrorism, Transnational Crime, Maritime Security, and Non-proliferation and Disarmament. These areas of cooperation all work in tandem to advance the overall development of regional peace and security through the promotion of preventive diplomacy and the development of confidence building measures and conflict resolution mechanisms.




Topic A:
Reaching Stability: Promoting Regional Peace and Security

The ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), along with its parent organ, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), has been seeking for means of achieving regional security, stability, and sustainability. Back in 1971, the Zone of Peace, Freedom, and Neutrality Declaration was signed and adopted by ASEAN member states in hopes of keeping the region “free from any form or manner of interference by outside powers.“ With that in mind, member states of the ARF agreed that Confidence-Building Measures (CBM), Preventive Diplomacy (PD) and Conflict Resolution Mechanisms (CRM) should be applied to the region to achieve regional peace and prosperity. However, unresolved territorial disputes, the abundance of diversity within the region, and the constant and significant shifts of regional power relations due to the rapid economic growth of countries have all made it hard for consensus to be reached on how these confidence-building processes are to be implemented. With the rising tension in South China Sea and the pivoted attention of international power players, formulating a regional code of conduct for crisis prevention, confidence building, and reconciliation is now more important than ever. Through addressing the need of a confidence building process within the region, delegates can expect to debate on the essence of CBM, PD, and CRMs and examine the possibility of utilizing these measures or mechanisms to resolve ongoing conflicts in the likes of the South China Sea dispute and achieve regional peace and security.


Topic B:
Reinforcing Disarmament: Combating Illicit Trade in Weapons and Materials

Illicit trade in Weapons and Materials poses a huge threat towards the Asia-Pacific regional peace and security. On one hand, the proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) has long been one of the reasons for the abundance of armed conflict and instability. Though ASEAN has coordinated with EUROPOL and INTERPOL to establish a control regime for transnational crime within the region, the open coastline and the great need of arms and ammunition in areas of conflict incentivizes traffickers to find new ways of trafficking these illicit goods. On the other hand, the proliferation of Chemical, Biological, Radioactive, and Nuclear Materials (CBRN Materials) is also a huge concern for the region. With the increasing radicalization of minority an disenfranchised groupings, the threat of CBRN materials falling into the hands of non-state actors has increased significantly. Though the characteristic of the illicit trade of SALW and CBRN Materials are different in nature, there exists some synergies that can both be exploited by traffickers and regulators. Through addressing the common challenges posed by both areas, delegates can expect a fruitful discussion on the synergies between these two genres of trafficked goods and how the Asia-Pacific can address the illicit trade of weapons and materials through a collective, regional approach.

Disarmament and International Security Committee (DISEC)

The Disarmament and International Security Committee (DISEC) is an organ of the General Assembly (GA) which (concentrates) its mandate to discuss all disarmament and international security issues contained within the scope of the United Nations Charter. Resolutions have been passed in this committee, resulting in landmark agreements and conventions that have benefitted mankind greatly, such as the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention to the recent Arms Trade Treaty. With continuing outbreaks of security concerns causing calamities around the world, the DISEC continues to serve its purpose as the sole committee in the GA that focuses exclusively on international peace and disarmament. Furthermore, in coordination with the Security Council, the DISEC strives to tread towards the objective of maintaining peace and security in the international community.




Topic A:
Non-State Actors in Middle East Region

“Non-state actors” can generally be understood as individuals or organizations that poses significant political influence to the international society, but is not allied with any particular state or meets the qualification of a “state”. Though the term should not be comprehended as a complete equal to Jihadist groups, extremists with radical beliefs in Islam, they are certainly active non-state actors that cause instabilities in the region. In addition to Jihadist groups, other non-state actors such as the uprisings or the rebellious groups against states, all bear common features include but are not limited to: organized crime actions operated within states, and unanticipated military misconduct against authorities and civilians. The Middle East is home to perhaps the most notorious non-state military actors of our time, with conflicts in the region lasting for years, albeit the measures taken to counteract these non-state actors. Their influences are not just within the Middle East region, but spreading around the world; such as the recent tragic attacks in Paris and Brussels, causing numerous casualties and panic among European countries. To set the Middle East region in the direction of a peaceful future, and to prevent the same misfortunes from repeating, it is urgent for the United Nations to tackle the issue of non-state actors in Middle East region.


Topic B:
Regulations Concerning Unmanned Aerial Systems

Unmanned Aerial Systems (UASs) —or so-called Drones— are aerial vehicles that may be maneuvered from a remote location from where the UASs are flying. According to a classification stated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), there are three types of UASs operations: Public Operations, Civil Operations, and Model Aircraft. The usage of UASs can be dated back to the early 1900s, when UASs were originally used in military for target practice. Since then, UASs have constantly evolved and have developed numerous applications. In military aspects, drones usually carry out missions such as reconnaissance, policing or execution mission, which are considered too dangerous for people to operate, or too dirty for man on the ground to implement. The convenience and safety brought by UASs have attracted many countries to jump into the research and development. Nowadays, other than their military applications, UASs are also utilized for various purposes such as transportation, recreation, and journalism. However, cases show that these unregulated UASs can result in numerous problems and bring about security loopholes. A drone crashed right in front of German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a campaign event in Dresden, Germany on September 2013; another drone even flew into the airspace of the White House in 2015 and crash-landed onto the lawn, though the pilot of this drone had no intentions of breaching the premises. Either intentional or unintentional, these cases obviously raise concerns about safety, security and even privacy. Till now, there ceases to be a sound legal system to regulate and specify the usage of UASs. As drones are gradually introduced into different fields for utilization, regulations do not seem to be winning in the game of catching up. This is a pressing issue that the UN needs to answer.




Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is an agency of the United Nations that specializes in achieving food security for all mankind. Since its establishment in 1945, the FAO has worked towards its main goals of hunger eradication, poverty elimination, economic and social advancement, and sustainable utilization of natural resources. With all these prospects, the FAO strives to benefit both the present and future generations. Its primary missions include sharing food and agriculture related information, acting as a neutral forum for different parties to build common understanding, supporting countries to prevent and mitigate risks to food and agriculture, and bringing knowledge to the field to enhance agricultural development.




Topic A:
Combatting Threats to Food Security Posed by Climate Change

Climate change poses severe and distinct threats to food security. The increased number and frequency of extreme weather events as well as long-term climate risks have negatively impacted food availability, access, and stability, infringing on the people’s right to food. Eighty percent of food-insecure populations live in areas that are prone to natural disaster and environmental degradation, and are also most vulnerable to climate change. If efforts are not made to combat these threats to food security, the FAO’s goal of eradicating hunger in our lifetime will not be achieved. The FAO has built a series of frameworks to assist member states in responding to the effects of climate change, as well as providing statistical and technical guidance. Its work has focused on helping current agricultural systems adapt to the challenges brought by climate change. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) recognized the importance of food security in the Paris Climate Change Agreement. The agreement is yet to be ratified, and further actions are expected to be taken. The FAO expects to play a prominent role in pushing forward the progress and implementing relevant actions.


Topic B:
Food Supply and Malnutrition in Post-Conflict Situations

Hunger and malnutrition are issues that many people in post-conflict situations are forced to encounter, even after having escaped the immediate danger of conflicts. Regional instability has a strong negative impact on rural areas, leading to significant fall back in agriculture and food production. The destruction of infrastructure and institutions also cause great difficulty in food accessibility. In post-conflict situations, persistent high food insecurity can lead back to the resuming of conflicts. Food shortage and malnutrition have led to more deaths than the wars or conflicts that caused them. The FAO, as well as partner organizations such as the World Food Program (WFP), have worked to provide humanitarian assistance to rebuild food security in many post-conflict situations in recent years. As the number of on-going conflicts increase, the FAO strives to figure out methods to improve its functions to combat food insecurity in post-conflict situations.




International Monetary Fund (IMF)

After the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944, International Monetary Fund (IMF) was established to monitor and stabilize international monetary system, promote cooperation among members and facilitate global economic growth. After more than a half-century, the Fund’s mandate has been updated to include all macroeconomic and financial sector issues that bear on global stability. There are three main functions that IMF holds: surveillance, technical assistance and lending. As the critical factor to maintain monetary stability, the lending mechanism is the most crucial one for IMF to fulfill its purpose through lending funds to countries with urgent needs. With 188 members, IMF is able to gather huge amount of resources, and along with close cooperation with the UN and also World Bank Group, the IMF has become the most authoritative financial organization. It has played an essential role in multiple financial crises since its establishment, and helped countries to tackle their fiscal difficulties.




Topic A:
Reform on the conditionality of loans

One of the primary functions of IMF is to aid countries’ debts when needed, usually in the form of loans. A loan, debt relief fund or bilateral aid distributed by IMF often requires certain conditions to be met. The conditionality framework was designed to help improve structural economic issues, maintain appropriate usage of loans, and ensure the return of the loans. The conditions for structural adjustments may include austerity, trade liberalization, corruption elimination and more. However, the effectiveness and feasibility of such conditions are criticized in recent years due to the failure of debt-relief, continuous economic problems and the lack of compliance. In addition, the policies required in the conditions are often politically sensitive when in regard to sovereignty and social stability. It is apparent that such conditionality hasn’t always achieved the guaranteed relief. Therefore, the reform on the conditionality of loans should be in place for IMF to redeem its promise to the international community.


Topic B:
Combatting tax non-compliance in tax havens

To define tax non-compliance, it includes tax avoidance that works within the law, and tax evasion that is contrarily illegal. It drastically affects governments’ income and their balance of payments, thus falls under IMF’s mandate. As for tax havens, the OECD identifies three key factors: no or only nominal taxes, protection of personal financial information and lack of transparency. As a result, wealthy individuals and enterprises sometimes take advantages of those jurisdictions for the purpose of tax evasion and avoidance, undermining governmental revenue in the client’s home countries and transparency in host countries. Furthermore, such tax non-compliance indirectly damages social equality through avoiding taxation redistribution policy conducted by the governments. IMF plays a pivotal role in proposing policies to Member States to tackle these tax havens comprehensively and collaborating with other relevant entities, including the OECD and World Bank Group, to collect data and launch initiatives globally.



Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee (SOCHUM)

The Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Affairs Committee is the Third Committee of the General Assembly, and is tasked with a mandate concerning matters of human rights concerns all over the world. Issues that SOCHUM has previously discussed include global literacy, right to self-determination, women empowerment, elimination of racism and discrimination, as well as treatment of refugees and displaced persons. SOCHUM oversees the work of the United Nations Human Rights Council, and engages in close collaboration with UN and non-UN bodies such as the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees and the United Nations Children's Fund.




Topic A:
Status of the Rohingya Community

Rohingya Muslims reside in the Rakhine State of Myanmar and have been described by human rights organizations as one of the most persecuted minorities in the world. In 1982, the Burmese nationality law denied Rohingya citizenship, and Rohingyas have since been considered foreign residents. Today, an estimated two million Rohingya Muslims are stateless and denied of their fundamental human rights. In the past several years, the age-old feud between Rohingya Muslims and Burmese Buddhists has drawn global attention following the 2012 Rakhine State riots as well as the recent Rohingya refugee crisis.


Topic B:
Women in prison

Globally, within the past several decades, the female incarceration rate has accelerated at a much faster pace than that of men. The conditions of women in prison in many countries can be described as degrading and inhumane, with a large number of female prisoners suffering from physical and sexual abuse as well as untreated physical and psychological illnesses. However, the human rights of female prisoners are greatly ignored in these primarily male-dominated prison systems. Issues to be addressed include provision of proper medical resources and facilities accommodating specific needs of female inmates, provision of rehabilitation programs, and elimination of violence against women in custody.

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC)

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) was established in 1997 as the result of a merger between the United Nations Drug Control Programme (UNDCP) and the Centre for International Crime Prevention. UNODC is mandated to assist its Member States in fighting against illicit drugs and international and transnational crimes. The scope of the programme’s technical assistance encompasses not only drug abuse prevention and health, organized crimes and trafficking, but also corruption, crime prevention and criminal reform, as well as terrorism prevention. Under its three pillars, UNODC offers its specialized assistance and expertise through field-based technical cooperation projects, research and analytical work, as well as normative work in the ratification and implementation of related treaties and legislation.




Topic A:
Legalization of Cannabis

From cannabis coffee shops to incarceration for possession of a highly illegal substance, the production, sale and use of cannabis have been the subject of much debate internationally. Perception of the drug varies greatly between nations. As of 2016, some countries have already initiated the decriminalization of cannabis, some are advocating for its legalization, while others stand their ground on keeping it a highly-regulated and illegal drug. Advocates highlight better control and regulation as potential benefits, while skeptics express concerns regarding possible negative effects of its legalization on people and society in the long run. Discussion on the legalization of cannabis from different national perspectives based on each country’s respective past experiences is invaluable to determining appropriate regulations and restrictions on the drug.


Topic B:
Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling

Human trafficking and migrant smuggling have been and remain to this day a significant challenge for all countries, whether developing or developed. The former uses force, fraud and deception to acquire persons for exploitation, while the latter sees vulnerable people suffer hardship as they attempt to search for a better life through desperate and illegal measures. Furthermore, smuggled migrants are more susceptible to human trafficking. Crises due to recent conflicts, such as the Syrian refugee crisis, have aggravated related trafficking and smuggling crimes, making it an urgent world issue which needs to be addressed. Through past actions and discussions, nations need to come together and find ways to combat and prevent further increase in the crimes.



United Nations Security Council

The United Nations Security Council is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations. As stated in the UN Charter, the members of the United Nations have given the Security Council the primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security, and have also agreed to comply to its decisions. When a situation arises that is likely to endanger the maintenance international peace, the Security Council would command the parties to reach a settlement through peaceful means. The council’s decisions can also be enforced by member states through the implementation of economic sanctions or collective military action. The Council consists of ten non-permanent members and five permanent members — China, France, Russia, United Kingdom, and United States of America. A negative vote by any one of the five permanent members vetoes the resolution. The ten non-permanent members are elected on a regional basis by the General Assembly for a two-year term.




Topic A:
The Situation in South Sudan

The South Sudanese Civil War refers to the conflict between two major factions and their allies, forces loyal to the president Salva Kiir and former Vice President Riek Machar. The civil war broke out in December 2013 when President Kiir accused his former deputy Machar of plotting a coup d’état. In August 2015, through several rounds of negotiations, President Kiir signed a peace agreement with Machar. However, the latest truce remains fragile, as violence continues. Both sides have accused the other of violating the agreement and therefore are reluctant to further peace building processes. Since South Sudan’s independence, the UN peacekeeping mission, UNMISS, with its main goal of civilian protection and monitoring the implementation of a peace agreement, had limited accomplishments and remained a strained relation with the government, who has undermined several UN refugee camps. With more than 1,660,000 people displaced and 6,000,000 people in need of aid, South Sudan is still a long way from stability. How could the council deal with the South Sudan’s poor humanitarian situation and assist this country to creating lasting peace?


Topic B:
The Future Development of Post Conflict Stabilization

For post-conflict states following the signing of a peace accord, post conflict stabilization is a crucial step to establishing lasting peace. During this period, the two principle objectives of the UN are DDR and SSR. DDR stands for the “disarmament, demobilization and reintegration” of ex-combatants and has become an integral part of post-conflict peace consolidation. Security Sector Reform (SSR), also a crucial step for the government to reach a stable political status, aims to enhance effective and accountable security for the State and its people. In recent years, countries within the council have advocated for the council to take a more dominative role in the process. However, the actions taken by the council have been criticized as inconsistent and lack of coordination. How can the Council integrate the efforts of nations and its agencies to offer holistic and coherent approach towards post-conflict states?



國際教育局

國際教育局於1925年創立於日內瓦,由當時著名的瑞士心理學家皮亞傑所帶領,並於1969年加入聯合國教科文組織,成為在比較教育領域有傑出表現的國際機構。國際教育局的主要任務包含提供學者與官員間的對話平台、師資訓練及教學方法研究等。此委員會希望喚起代表對教育的關心及熱忱,並且致力於合作溝通解決現況下的教育問題,為各國創造更良好的教育環境。




主題一:
國際教育展望:落實均等教育資源

國際教育由於社會、政治、經濟上的影響,向來有非常大的不均等。根據聯合國兒童基金會於2015年9月發布之報告,中東、北非部分區域近年的戰爭與動亂,已使超過1300萬兒童失學,是這區域學齡人口的40%。對於動盪不安的國家來說,孩童的受教權往往受到嚴重的侵害。另外,女性的就學率也普遍低於男性,以阿富汗為例,阿富汗女性的識字率只有12.5%;相對的,阿富汗男性識字率有39.3%,女性教育值得國際重視。而偏鄉地區或資源缺乏地區,教育資源缺乏導致的不平等,也是應該被討論的重大議題。如何從根本著手,改善不均等的教育,留待會議中討論。


主題二:
未來教育新挑戰:困境及解決方案

傳統式的教學方法已不盡然能滿足所有學生的需求。翻轉教學、學思達、問題導向(Project-based learning)等教學法開始因應不同性質的學生而更加廣泛的被教師所使用。磨客師(MOOCS)、PaGamO、均一教育平台、可汗學院等教學平台更是顛覆了傳統對於教育的想像。隨著科技的進步,未來教育發展也延伸出更多樣的可能性,教師必須與時俱進增進教學能力,教學硬軟體更是不可或缺的元素。該如何突破教育現有的侷限、打破傳統的框架,需要各國一同討論、互相觀摩,促進未來教育之發展。