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-

Report of the Decisions of
the General Assembly
of the ICMM

Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia)
5 and 7 October 2009


First Session

 

Chairmanship

Chairman : Lt General Dato' Pahlawan (DR) Sulaiman BIN ABDULLAH (allowed to vote)
Secretary General : Dr Jacques SANABRIA
Deputy Chairman: Brigadier General Mohamed Kamel CHEBBI (MD) (allowed to vote)
Deputy Secretary General: Colonel Marc LEMMENS (MD)
Chairman of the Scientific Council : Major General Marcel MERLIN (MD, Prof.) (allowed to vote)

Members present

Algeria, Argentina, Austria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Brazil, Burundi, Canada, Chad (not allowed to vote), Chile, China, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Holy See, India, Iraq, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Malaysia, Mali, Malta, Mauritania (not allowed to vote), Morocco, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States of America, Uruguay.

Observers

Iran, WHO, UNAIDS.

Checklist of documents

Before the meeting began, all delegates should have received the following documents, some of which were to be a basis for discussion:
- Practical Guide for Delegates
- Agenda of the General Assembly
- Recommendations of the International Working Group
- Proposal for the modification of the Statutes
- Proposal for a RIO on the Scientific Council
- Proposal concerning the Strategic Plan
- Proposal concerning Project Officers

Report

1. The Chairman opened the meeting at 14:33 and, after verification, declared the General Assembly compliant with the Statutes.

2. Two new Members were nominated – New Zealand and the Comoros. After presentation by the delegates, the Chairman invited the Assembly to vote on their admission. Both countries were accepted by unanimous vote.

3. Activity report by the Secretary General (SG)
- The SG gave a comprehensive report on activities in which he was involved as part of his assignment.
- A presentation was given by Colonel (PhD, Prof) I. KHOLIKOV (Russia) regarding the recommendations of the International Working Group (IWG), which met in Tunis in the spring of 2009 (see appendix 1A). As no objections were made to these recommendations, it was agreed that they would be used by the SG as a basis for his future work.

4. Report by the Chairman of the Scientific Council (CSC)
- A comprehensive list of the scientific activities of the ICMM was given, and it was noted that these activities are becoming more numerous and of better quality.
- The CSC reported on the work of the Technical Commissions (TC) and announced those positions which were open for election :

Veterinary TC
The report on the activities of his Commission was given by Colonel (Vet.) P. VAN DER MERWE (South Africa). He stressed the importance of enabling veterinarians from Member States to participate more in courses and submit work to ICMM publications and asked for an improvement in the way information is made available to military veterinarians. He invited countries to decide on the organization of the next veterinary course. It was announced that South Africa would co-organize the next world congress on veterinary medicine.

TC for Education
The report on the activities of his Commission was given by Colonel (MD, Prof) H. BAER (Switzerland). He announced that Switzerland is willing to set up a Centre of Reference in the Law of Armed Conflicts and International Humanitarian Law for Armed Forces Medical Personnel. This Centre will be located in Switzerland, and will cooperate closely with international organizations (already situated in that country) which also deal with such matters. The proposal was to be submitted later by the Swiss delegate.

Pharmacy TC
Brigadier General (Pharm.) G. BLEIMULLER (Germany) remarked that very few questions had been submitted to the Commission. He gave an overview of the numerous contacts made with other international pharmacy organizations and underlined the difficulties for military pharmacists to have to choose between several congresses, reviews or activities. As his 4-year mandate is coming to an end, he expressed his sincere thanks to the General Assembly and to the Secretary General for their support.
The delegate from Germany introduced the candidate for election to the position of Chairman of the Pharmacy Commission: Colonel (Pharm.) C. LOMMER (Germany).

Dental TC
The report on the activities of his commission was given by Colonel (DMD) M. NASSIH (Morocco). He announced the topics of the Round Table discussion to take place during the Congress.
As his 4-year mandate is coming to an end, he expressed his sincere thanks to the General Assembly and to the Secretary General for their support.
The delegate from the United States introduced the candidate for election to the position of Chairman of the Dental Commission: Colonel (DMD) T. GONZALES (USA).

Administration and Logistics TC
The Chairman of the Scientific Council announced that the outgoing Chairman of this TC was unable to attend. The delegate from China introduced the candidate for election to the position of Chairman of the Administration and Logistics Commission: Senior Colonel (Prof) Lulu ZHANG (China).
- The CSC then outlined the different contacts made (both new and continuing) with the following international organizations: WHO; OIE (World Organization for Animal Health) and UNAIDS.
- A report on training activities particularly underlined the extent of international participation at the different courses organized under the aegis of the ICMM. Details can be found in the Report on Scientific Activities (see appendix 1B)
The CSC stressed the importance of meeting registration deadlines for courses, as countries which make the effort to organize a course often meet difficulties when registration documents are received too late. One course had to be cancelled and another could not be organized as planned and had to be significantly changed, due to late registration.
- The CSC announced upcoming courses organized under the aegis of the ICMM.

Courses organized under the aegis of the ICMM:
Course on the Law of Armed Conflict, with sessions in Spiez every August and regional sessions in South Africa (2011) and in Saudi Arabia (December 2009, 2010, 2011).
Course on the preparation of military personnel in peace support operations, to be given in English in Marseilles (France) June 21-25, 2010.
International Veterinary Course – date and location to be announced soon.
Course on medical support in a desert environment, to be held in 2010 in Tunisia.

Courses recommended by the ICMM:
Courses on Aviation Medicine, Diving Medicine and the Treatment of NBC Casualties to be held in Saudi Arabia, in Dhahran in 2010.
Course on Tropical Medicine to be held in Amsterdam in 2010.
To conclude, the CSC reminded delegates that detailed information about these courses can be found on the ICMM website, and that it is important for delegates to register staff for these events.
- The CSC gave an outline of the changes made to the ICMM International Review of the Armed Forces Medical Services.
The layout has been totally modified and editorial policy will be centered on the core components of Military Medicine in its general definition.
Statistics show that over the past 5 years, 75% of articles published were in English, 25% in French and only 2% in Spanish. Moreover, during the 5-year period, 70% of the articles published in the Review were submitted by only 10% of Member States. The CSC reminded delegates of the importance of the Review for the ICMM and asked them to encourage their young officers to submit articles.

5. The Secretary General discussed the future of ICMM activities.
- He outlined the problems arising from the resources available to the ICMM, then compared this to the situation of another international military organization, the International Military Sports Council.
- He invited comments from the General Assembly concerning the future of the secretariat general.
The Belgian representative read a declaration from Major General (MD) G. LAIRE (Belgium) stating the intention of the Belgian Ministry of Defense. This text confirmed that Belgium will continue to support the ICMM, as it has in the past, in accordance with its needs.
The delegate from Switzerland announced two projects : i) the creation of an ICMM Training Centre of Reference for International Humanitarian Law and medical ethics (see Para. 4, TC for Education), to be located in Switzerland ; ii) if Belgium were no longer able or willing to continue to support the ICMM, Switzerland would be ready to discuss establishing a headquarters for the ICMM within its territory (only, however, in a situation where Belgium had expressed its intention to cease to do so).
The Chairman invited the General Assembly to vote on the Swiss project for a Centre of Reference – the project was approved (47 votes in favor)

6. The Chairman invited the General Assembly to vote on the modification of the Statutes:
- A brief overview of the modifications to simplify Articles 19 and 20 of the Statutes (concerning the functioning of the Scientific Council) was given by the Secretary General.
Results: 45 votes in favor: the modification of the Statutes was approved.
- Due to the modification of the Statutes, an amendment to the Regulation of Internal Order (RIO) concerning the functioning of the Scientific Council had become necessary.
Results: 46 votes in favor: the RIO on the Scientific Council was approved.

7. The Secretary General, as requested by the Chairman, named the candidates to host the 39th Congress on Military Medicine.
- Two countries had applied, both of which complied with the Statutes: Gabon and Nigeria. The delegates from these two countries were invited to present their projects. The SG then asked them to meet with him before the second session of the General Assembly to try to reach an agreement – the outcome of this meeting to be announced at the second session of the Assembly (Wed, Oct 07), with voting by secret ballot if no agreement reached.

8. With the agreement of the Chairman, the SG asked for three delegates to volunteer to form the Finance Commission in order to perform an audit and report to the General Assembly at the second session. Belgium Chile and Greece volunteered.

9. Elections : the Chairman invited the General Assembly to elect the Deputy Chairman of the Scientific Council (DCSC):
Presented by the CSC, Major General (MD, Prof) M. MORILLON was elected to the position (Approved: 53 votes, Opposed: 2 votes).

10. The Assembly was invited to vote to appoint the following Chairmen of Technical Commissions (as presented in the report by the Chairman of the Scientific Council):
- Elected Chairman of the Pharmacy TC: Colonel (Pharm.) C. LOMMER (Germany)
Approved: 53 votes, Opposed: 1 vote.
- Elected Chairman of the Dental TC: Colonel (DMD) T. GONZALES (USA)
Approved: 52 votes, Opposed: 2 votes
- Elected Chairman of the Admin/Log. TC: Senior Colonel (Prof) Lulu ZHANG (China)
Approved: 52 votes, Opposed: 2 votes.

11. The delegate of the Holy See put forward a proposal to recommend that the ICMM support efforts to lobby pharmaceutical companies for a reduction in the cost of medicine for poor countries. Voting on this proposal was postponed until the second session of the Assembly, to leave time for reflection.

The Secretary General thanked those countries which have made a particular contribution to organizing ICMM activities since the last General Assembly: Algeria, Belgium, France, Malaysia, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sudan, Switzerland, Tunisia and the USA.

The Chairman thanked the delegates for their participation at this first session.
Details on the organization of the Round Table discussion for Delegation Leaders were announced.
The meeting was adjourned at 18:30.