special political and decolonization committee

The Fourth Committee, Special Political and Decolonization Committee (SPECPOL), will entertain debate on two topics of international eminence.

Topic A: The legitimacy of Russian claims in Ukraine and Crimea

Especially in light of Donald Trump’s recent victory in the US Presidential election, Russian foreign policy interests have emerged at the forefront of the international stage. Conceptually speaking, the issue of Ukraine and Crimea is a colonization issue. A territory of the Russian Federation until it declared its independence in 1991, the Ukraine has continued to struggle to maintain its sovereignty. Though it declared itself a neutral state, the Ukraine has remained in a number of limited military partnerships, first with the Russian Federation and later also with NATO, which culminated with the NATO Ukraine Action Plan signed in 2002. Delegates need to decide whether to reinforce the previous General Assembly resolution of this particular topic or whether we should explore alternative avenues in working to resolve the present crisis. Keeping in mind the motives behind Russia’s actions, both political and material, this committee must take a multilateral approach to seeking a solution to the present situation. Whether that means renegotiations with the Russian Federation or a continuance of the present situation will be up to delegates to decide.

Topic B: Foreign resource interests


Natural resources have always been precious to those who have access to them, but the last hundred years have shown a growing international interest in locating and extracting natural resources. This trend has been punctuated by rising populations and the realization that natural resources are finite. The current situation in many countries is one where the benefits or payoffs from natural resources are not necessarily afforded to the country in which the resources are found. The finite and valuable nature of these natural resources means that their worth can easily be taken advantage of and be used for personal gain by local elites, MNCs or foreign governments. There are not enough laws to ensure that equal gain is achieved, and the laws that do exist go unenforced due to corruption or coercion. As natural resources come into even more demand, it is the responsibility of the delegates to define the rights accorded to those with these natural resources as well as who should have the right to control and benefit from them.

Chair: Grace Kim

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