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Conferences and CSO accreditation

Civil society organizations (CSO) are the voice of grass roots realities and this coincides with the UNCCD's bottom up approach to create valuable links between the larger United Nations System and stakeholders around the world.

The CSO are given an excellent platform for full participation at the UNCCD both at the national level, as stakeholders for the implementation of the Convention, and at the decision-making level ensuring participation to the official sessions of the Conference of the Parties (COP) and its subsidiary bodies. CSO representatives can participate as observers to the sessions through an accreditation process.  

During the official sessions, CSO’s have Open Dialogue Sessions where the representatives organize the agenda and set up a scenario to exchange with the Parties, United Nations agencies and intergovernmental organizations on issues that are relevant to the civil society. 

Accredited CSOs 

Following decision 5/COP.10, CSOs accredited to the COP were requested to submit to the secretariat by 30 March 2012 and every five years thereafter: 

  • a written confirmation of their interest in remaining accredited to the COP; 
  • a declaration that no changes have occurred in their status, juridical personality, governing bodies, membership and other requirements that may preclude their rights to be admitted to UNCCD meetings with observer status; and 
  • any other information relevant to the accreditation, with particular regard to their activities and competence in matters relating to the Convention. 

According to the decision the observer status was withdrawn from those CSOs failing to comply with the above-mentioned obligations. In the future these organizations will need to request their observer status following the accreditation process. 

Accreditation process 

The UNCCD COP recognizes that the involvement and participation of the civil society is vital to the successful implementation of this Convention. It therefore welcomes the contribution of CSOs, with particular regard to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and including business and industry entities, to the official meetings of the UNCCD. 

Reference texts 

In accordance with Article 22, paragraph 7 of the UNCCD and Rule 7 of the rules of procedure of the COP, representatives from any body or agency, whether national or international, governmental or non-governmental, may be admitted to participate in the proceedings of the Convention’s bodies under the conditions that the organization: 

  • is qualified in matters covered by the Convention 
  • has informed the UNCCD secretariat of its wish to participate 

For further information on the accreditation process, please contact CSOatunccd [dot] int (CSO[at]unccd[dot]int)