Delegate: Mr. Tor Arne Gangsø
Disclaimer: Obvious textual errors have been corrected. The authentic version can be found under “Original Records”.
5. Mr. GANGSØ (Norway) said that youth involvement in the political decision-making process was important. To that end, children and young persons must be taught democratic methods and techniques as early as possible. That goal could best be achieved by allowing young people to take an active part in organisational work – in organizations governed by youth. Norwegian youth believed that it was important for young people to have the freedom to organize and that the right to fight for their beliefs should be recognised, regardless of State policy or military alliances, even if their views were not in line with those of the politicians currently in office. Unfortunately, that right was threatened in many countries.
6. For many years, the Norwegian delegation had included two youth representatives. He, as one such representative, appreciated the opportunity to participate in the General Assembly. Similarly, it was to be hoped that more countries from all regions would include youth representatives in the delegations they sent to the General Assembly and other important forums.
7. Feeling useful, so fundamental for self-respect, was another aspect of such participation. Millions of young people who were currently unemployed or lacked educational opportunities felt that society did not need them, even though they were told that they represented the future. Both politicians and young people must remember that unemployment was a waste of valuable human resources and that investment in education was an investment in the future.
8. It was often said that young people from the wealthy areas of the world were lucky to have grown up in a society rich in material goods. However, young people felt that in the search for economic growth, the environment had often been harmed, and that the time had come to deal with the problem. The environment and development were two closely interrelated questions which would have to be dealt [*4*] with urgently at the national, regional and international levels and, of courser within the United Nations system. Pollution knew no boundaries, nor did it apply for any visas to travel to other countries. The tragic incident at Chernobyl was an example of that.
9. Young people had shown that they could be effective in creating awareness and communicating concern over environmental and development issueu, especially among politicians. In May 1990, the World Commission on Environment and Development would hold a regional conference at Bergen, Norway. Moreover, youth organisations in Norway were organising a conference for youth organisations of the member countries of the Economic Commission for Europe, in which young people from Eastern and Western Europe, the United States and Canada would participate.
10. Another question which affected the young generation in particular was the AIDS pandemic. Norwegian youth did not believe that the problem could be solved by isolating the victims of the disease, but rather by focusing on information and education. It was also important to take care of the victims and to remember that persona providing care in a proper and secure manner did not risk becoming infected. Another important way of controlling the disease was to combat drug abuse, which, unfortunately, had its highest incidence among youth. Drug abuse and trafficking endangered the sovereignty and security of States, and it was important for youth to participate, at both the national and international levels, in the struggle to eliminate them. It must be borne in mind that the production, illicit trafficking and consumption of drugs were closely interrelated, and that without demand, there would be no supply either.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/44/SR.14