Special Political and Decolonization

This year, SPECPOL will be the novice committee for ILMUNC-China. We recommend this committee for delegates who are new to Model UN and want to develop their skills under the guidance of our experienced chairs!

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to ILMUNC China! My name is Medha Sharma and I’m really excited to be your Moderator for the Special, Political, and Decolonization Committee (SPECPOL). This conference is going to be a blast and a really edifying learning experience for you, and I’m glad to be able to be a part of it!

Here’s a bit of background about myself: I am a senior studying Biology with minors in Health Care Management and Neuroscience. I was born in London, England and now live in the lovely Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In my time outside of Model UN, I am a cast member and writer for an all-female sketch comedy troupe called Bloomers. I also serve on Penn’s Student Government as Chair of the College of Arts and Sciences. I also love healthcare and spend a lot of time conducting medical research, running a free health clinic in West Philadelphia, and volunteering with patients in the spheres of cancer and cerebral palsy.

I love learning about public policy, which is what really got me involved in Model UN, but it’s the people that have made me stay so invested on the college level. The people running this conference are really wonderful and intelligent individuals who I’m sure you can learn a lot from during your time with us! I am really excited to work with you and also with your Chair Ahmed—he and I helped coordinate UPMUNC in Philadelphia together three years ago, and now we are back to get knee-deep into topics like Global Political Instability and Nationalism and the Decline of International Cooperation with you. I am confident that you all will be able to act as functional thought leaders and devise feasible and creative solutions for these high-level, thought-provoking issues plaguing our world today. I can’t wait to join you and help you through the process this Spring. In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to ask me any questions!

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to the 3rd annual Ivy League Model United Nations Conference in China! My name is Ahmed Kamil and it is my pleasure to serve as the chair of the SpecPol. I absolutely loved my last experience chairing an international conference at ILMUNC India 2016, so I’m especially eager to see how fresh topics and new perspectives translate into stimulating debate.

I am currently a senior at the University of Pennsylvania and an Arabic target in the Huntsman Program in International Studies and Business, concentrating in Finance. I was born in Khartoum, Sudan on a warm summer day and immigrated to the United States when I was about two years old. Since then, I have lived in Greenbelt, Maryland. I first got involved with Model United Nations my freshman year of high school, and am now a member of Penn’s International Affairs Association. I served as an Assistant Secretary General for UPMUNC XLVIII, and Director of Operations for UPMUNC XLIX and UPMUNC 50, and as you can tell, they can’t get rid of me. Some of my other interests include longboarding, Hip-Hop, graphic design, getting lost in the city, and reading bad Yelp reviews. I also have a passion for financial markets and help write a biweekly newsletter, so email me if you’re interested!

In the months leading up to conference, please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions regarding ILMUNC China or really anything. I look forward to meeting everyone in the fall!

Introduction

The Special Political and Decolonization Committee (SPECPOL) is the 4th Main Committee of the General Assembly (GA) of the United Nations (UN). It started in 1947 as the Special Political ad-hoc committee to specifically tackle issues dealing with international politics, security, and decolonization.[1] As a result of the United Nations’ declaration of the decade as the “International Decade for the Eradication of Colonialism,” in the 1990s, SPECPOL came into its current form by 1993. Compared to other GA committees of the UN, SPECPOL has a more diverse topics falling under its mandate. As a result, this his committee often deals with issues that overlap with other committees, such as peacekeeping operations, mining, outer space, atomic radiation, Palestinian refugees, decolonization, and international security.

Because of its diverse focus, SPECPOL is one of the most dynamic and stimulating committees that Model United Nations has to offer, dealing with some of the most controversial and challenging political crises of this day and age. It responds to and directly advises the Security Council, specialized agencies in the UN, governments of member states, non-governmental organizations (NGO), and other international organizations. While SPECPOL does not have the power to authorize military action or pass binding resolutions, it is the only GA committee that allows delegates who are not members of the nations’ permanent mission to sit in committee due to the sensitive nature of the topics discussed. For the duration of committee, it is important to keep in mind that non-binding language such as “urges” and “recommends,” rather than binding terms like “demands,” must be used while writing operative clauses. This is because it is within the committee’s power to suggest, not mandate, that the Security Council and other bodies it advises take action.

Topic 1: Global Political Instablity

Topic 2: Nationalism and the Decline of International Cooperation