The 77th General Session of the International Committee of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) was held in Paris from May 24 to 29, 2009, under the chairmanship of Dr Barry O’Neil (New Zealand), president of the International Committee and Dr Bernard Vallat, Director General of the OIE, who participated in the sessions in the consultative capacity. Delegations from 159 member countries participated in the General Session as well as observers from 5 non-member countries or territories and representatives from 50 international or regional organisations, institutions and federations. Dr Peter Black (Australia) participated in the General Session in his capacity as rapporteur for the plenary lecture. There were also presidents of the OIE Specialist Commissions and representatives of the Working Groups and ad hoc Groups. Among the participants were honorary, former presidents of the OIE as well as ministers or deputies of governments of some member countries. Professor Steven Edwards (U.K.) received the Gold Medal and three other experts the Silver Medal of OIE. The annual report of Dr B. Vallat on the activities of the OIE in 2008 and partly 2009 indicated intensive development of activities concerning effectivity of veterinary services in the member countries in the prophylaxis and control of infectious diseases of animals, zoonotic diseases, and food as well as feed safety. The plenary lecture was entitled “Impact of climate change and environmental changes on emerging and reemerging animal diseases and animal production”. According to the presented animal disease world status in 2008 and beginning of 2009 the major events affecting animals were: continuation of existence of African swine fever in Russia, some neighbour countries and Italy, expansion of peste des petits ruminants and bluetongue. The position of OIE towards A/H1N1 influenza indicated that this is a human disease and does not interfere with swine production as well as international movement of swine and their products. The number of BSE cases was decreasing in the reported period. Progress took place in laboratory diagnosis of OIE listed diseases. Amendments in the Terrestrial Animals Health Code took place. Representatives of a large number of international organisations, societies and institutions presented their activities, stressing the fruitful cooperation with the OIE.