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STATEMENT By H.E Mr. Pham Gia Khiem Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Viet Nam at the General Debate of the 63rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly
09-27-2008, 10:02 am


By H.E Mr. Pham Gia Khiem

Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Viet Nam at the General Debate of the 63rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly

(New York, 27 September 2008)

Mr. President,

Let me first congratulate you on your election as President of the 63rd Session of the General Assembly. I am confident that, under your able chairmanship, you will guide our session to a great success. I would also like to commend His Excellency Mr. Srgjan Kerim for his important contributions to the work of the 62nd Session of the General Assembly.

Mr. President,

While the trend of peace, cooperation and development continued to prevail, there have been complex developments in the world during the last year. Enduring local conflicts and acts of terrorism still occurred in many parts of the world and new tension has emerged in Europe, including in the Balkans and the Caucasus.  At the same time, the world is going through the most severe economic uncertainties since the 1997-1998 financial crisis together with new challenges such as climate change, food and energy security. 

More than ever, the current situation compels nations to promote dialogue and cooperation to surmount common challenges, both man-made and natural.  Viet Nam supports efforts to end violence in Afghanistan and Iraq. We should also work to  facilitate further progress in the search for lasting peaceful solutions to the nuclear issues on the Korean Peninsular and Iran on the basis of due respect for both the legitimate rights of states to develop and use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes and the regime of non-proliferation of nuclear weapons. In follow-up of the Annapolis outcome,  I wish to reaffirm Viet Nam’s support for the role of the Quartet, the League of Arab States, regional countries and the United Nations, especially the Security Council, in the quest for a lasting solution to the  Middle East. Such a solution should respect the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including the right to establish an independent state of their own and the principle of “land for peace”.

As leaders of the world gathered here to discuss the development needs of Africa, we realized clearly the organic relationship between peace and development. Vietnam undertakes to work closely with the United Nations and the African Union to find peaceful solutions to conflicts and disputes that are still raging on this continent.

Mr. President,

New uncertainties are unfolding in the global economic and financial situation. Climate change, energy and food shortages are becoming more and more serious global issues. In face of this situation, it is essential to enhance international cooperation to overcome these problems. In that regard, developed countries should take measures to maintain their macro-economic and financial stability and implement international commitments to improve international economic relations, strengthen trade and financial systems, increase debt reduction and transfer of technology. That cooperation is possible and effective only with due regards given to each country’s special conditions, legitimate concerns and interests.

 Mr. President,

         Given complex developments in the world,  the United Nation would have a greater role to play in saving mankind from the scourge of war and finding solutions to problems. To this end, the United Nations must be strengthened. Democratic and comprehensive reforms of the UN, including the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council and specialized agencies, will make this organization more effective and efficient in the areas of work mandated by the Charter.  Viet Nam will continue to contribute to efforts aimed at making the United Nations more democratic, more effective and more responsive to the needs of the peoples of the world. In Viet Nam, the Government is working with UN agencies and other development partners to implement the “One UN” initiative. We hope and believe that Vietnam and the UN’s experience in implementing this pilot reform program will be useful to other aid receipient countries and to the UN reform process.

 Mr. President,

      Proceeding from its foreign policy of independence, sovereignty, peace, cooperation and development and efforts to deeply engaged with the world, Viet Nam has seriously observed its commitments and actively participated in addressing to global issues. We strongly support the Bali Roadmap, which aims to create the legal framework for international cooperation in addressing climate change beyond 2012.  Despite natural disasters and epidemics, Viet Nam is honouring  its commitments to maintain the volume of rice exports of 4 million tons a  year. We undertake to continue these efforts to ease the pressures of the global food price and food security.

       2008 is the first year Viet Nam assumes the responsibilities of a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council.   With a desire to make greater contributions to the maintenance of international peace and security, Viet Nam has participated in the work of UNSC as a constructive and responsible member. We shall continue to uphold the principles enshrined in the Charter while working with other Council members and UN members to find solutions that meet the interests of international peace and security and the legitimate interests of all countries and parties concerned.

Mr. President,

Over the past 63 years since its foundation, the United Nations has sailed through numerous upheavals of history and acquired an increasingly significant role in international relations. Against that backdrop and with the trust in the power of the peoples’ will and determination to strive for peace, cooperation and development, we are strongly confident that the international community will overcome new challenges and the United Nations will continue to live up to the expectations of all peoples in the world.

I thank you for your kind attention.

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