Recalling its resolutions 2221 (XXI) of 19 December 1966, 2250 (S-V) of 23 May 1967 and 2261 (XXII) of 3 November 1967 regarding the convening of the United Nations Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space,
Reaffirming its belief that it is in the interest of all countries, and of the developing countries in particular, that knowledge and understanding of the achievements of space science and technology should be more widely disseminated and that international co-operation in the field of practical applications of space science and technology should be actively promoted,
1. Expresses its appreciation to the Government of Austria for acting as host of the United Nations Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space and for its assistance in the organization of the Conference;
2. Commends the results of the Conference and notes with gratification that it achieved its purpose of examining the practical benefits of space exploration on the basis of scientific and technical achievements and the opportunities available to non-space Powers for international co-operation in space activities, with special relevance to the needs of the developing countries;
4. Welcomes the decision of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space to consider in detail all aspects of the proposals made by India that a small advisory group be constituted and that action be taken to arrange panel meetings, fellowships, surveys and technical assistance;1
5. Further welcomes the decision of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space to examine the proposal made by Sierra Leone that arrangements should be made for the use of expert services through a United Nations centre for information and consultation in the field of practical application of space technology;2
6. Urges all Member States, in carrying out their national programmes, to avail themselves to the fullest extent possible of the information contained in the papers presented and the discussions held at the Conference;
7. Requests the Secretary-General to bring to the attention of all Member States, in particular the developing countries, the information contained in the papers presented and the discussions held at the Conference;
8. Expresses its appreciation of the participation in an contribution to the work of the Conference by the International Labour Organisation, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, the World Health Organization, the International Civil Aviation Organization, the International Telecommunication Union, the World Meteorological Organization, the Inter-Governmental Maritime Consultative Organization, the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Committee on Space Research of the International Council of Scientific Unions and invites those organizations to consider the work of the Conference and to take the necessary follow-up steps to ensure the future progress of the work in their respective areas of competence;
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20 December 1968
Believing that the benefits of space exploration can be extended to States at all stages of economic and scientific development if Member States conduct their space programmes in a manner designed to promote the maximum international co-operation and widest possible exchange of information in this field,
(a) To complete urgently the preparation of a draft agreement on liability for damage caused by the launching of objects into outer space and to submit it to the General Assembly at its twenty-fourth session;
(b) To continue to study questions relative to the definition of outer space and the utilization of outer space and celestial bodies, including various implications of space communications, as well as those comments which may be brought to the attention of the Committee by specialized agencies and the International Atomic Energy Agency as a result of their examination of problems that have arisen or that may arise from the use of outer space in the field within their competence;
3. Urges those countries which have not yet become parties to the Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space,6 including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies, and the Agreement on the Rescue of Astronauts, the Return of Astronauts and the Return of Objects Launched into Outer Space, to give early consideration to ratifying or acceding to those agreements so that they may have the broadest possible effect;
4. Reaffirms its belief, as expressed in resolution 1721 D (XVI) of 20 December 1961, that communication by means of satellites should be available to the nations of the world as soon as practicable on a global and non-discriminatory basis, and recommends that States parties to negotiations regarding international arrangements in the field of satellite communication should constantly bear this principle in mind so that its ultimate realization may not be impaired;
5. Approves the establishment by the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space of a working group to study and report on the technical feasibility of communication by direct broadcast from satellites and the current and foreseeable development in this field, including comparative user costs and other economic considerations, as well as the implications of such developments in the social, cultural, legal and other areas, and expresses the hope that interested States Members of the United Nations and members of the specialized agencies will contribute comments and working papers to the working group for its information and guidance in the performance of its task;
6. Welcomes the decision of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space to take up at its next session serious consideration of suggestions and views regarding education and training in the field of exploration and peaceful uses of outer space that were expressed in the General Assembly and in the Committee, as requested by the Assembly in paragraph 11 of resolution 2260 (XXII);
7. Approves the continuing sponsorship by the United Nations of the Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station and recommends that Member States should give consideration to the use of these facilities for appropriate space research activities;
8. Endorses the recommendation of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space that, upon notification of the United Nations by the Government of Argentina that the Mar Chiquita station near Mar del Plata is operative, the Secretary-General, in consultation with the Chairman of the Committee, should appoint a small group of scientists, drawn from States which are members of the Committee and are familiar with space research and facilities, to visit the station in Argentina and report to the Committee on its eligibility for United Nations sponsorship, in accordance with the basic principles endorsed by the General Assembly in its resolution 1802 (XVII) of 14 December 1962;
10. Notes with appreciation that, in accordance with General Assembly resolution 1721 B (XVI) of 20 December 1961, the Secretary-General continues to maintain a public registry of objects launched into orbit or beyond on the basis of information furnished by Member States;
11. Requests the specialized agencies and the International Atomic Energy Agency to examine the particular problems which arise or which may arise from the use of outer space in the fields within their competence and which should in their opinion be brought to the attention of the Committee on the Peaceful uses of Outer Space, and to report thereon to the Committee for its consideration, as indicated in paragraph 2 (b) of the present resolution;
12. Invites the specialized agencies concerned and the International Atomic Energy Agency to furnish the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space with progress reports on their work in the field of the peaceful uses of outer space;
13. Requests the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space to continue to work as set out in the present resolution and in previous General Assembly resolutions, and to report to the Assembly at its twenty-fourth session.
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20 December 1968
2. Ibid., para. 23.
3. Ibid., document A/7285.
4. General Assembly resolution 2345 (XXII), annex.
5. See Official Records of the General Assembly, Twenty-third Session, agenda item 23, document A/7285, paras. 11-38.
6. General Assembly resolution 2222 (XXI), annex.
7. Ibid., Supplement No. 21A (A/7621/Add.1), paras. 9-11.