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Viet Nam & UN  »  General
 
STATEMENT By H.E. Ambassador Le Luong Minh, Permanent Representative of Viet Nam on Agenda Item 100 “Report of the Secretary-General on the Work of the Organization”
10-06-2008, 11:20 pm

STATEMENT

By

H.E. Ambassador Le Luong Minh, Permanent Representative of Viet Nam

at the Plenary Meeting of the 63rd Session of the United Nations

General Assembly

on Agenda Item 100 “Report of the Secretary-General on the Work of the Organization”

New York, 6 October 2008

-------

Mr. President,

At the outset, on behalf of the Vietnamese Delegation, I would like to congratulate you on your election as President of this 63rd Session of the General Assembly and pledge to you the fullest cooperation of my Delegation with a view to contributing to its success.

I thank the Secretary General for his Report on the Work of the Organization contained in document A/63/1 covering a wide spectrum of important issues such as development, peace and security, human rights, humanitarian affairs, and UN reform.

Mr. President,

Eight years after our leaders adopted the Millennium Declaration, we share the concern expressed by the Secretary-General that although significant gains have been recorded towards the global goal of halving extreme poverty by 2015, many countries will not be able to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. More than one billion people in the world continue to live below the poverty line; hundreds of millions are suffering from hunger; tens of millions of school age children are out of school; discrimination and violence against women remains widespread; 2007 alone saw 2.5 millions new cases of HIV infection; lack of access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation continue to make the hard life of the poor even harder. Against the backdrop of the global food crisis, the increase in energy prices,  global warming and climate change, the global economic slowdown, these pose a real threat of undermining the progress made by developing countries in their struggle to overcome the status of under-development and mitigate the impact of development advances on those most in need, namely the poor, women and children. With half of the world’s adult population owning only 1 percent of global wealth as the Secretary-General pointed out, those ills of the developing world cannot be cured without genuine and active cooperation and assistance from the developed countries within the framework of a global partnership for development that he emphasized as critical. We join his call for the delivery of the official development assistance commitments and hope that his goal of US$ 50 billion per year by 2010 will be achieved. Equally important as a means to make globalization contribute to rather than hinder the achievement of the MDGs is an open, rule-based, predictable and non-discriminatory trading and financial system. Late conclusion of the Doha round of trade negotiations will, among other things, not only worsen the food crisis but also make the efforts to overcome it even more difficult. Successful conclusion of the Doha round must be set as a high priority for Member States.

Mr. President,

Just less than two weeks ago, the General Assembly under your guidance held two high-level events  on  the Millennium  Development Goals and on the special needs of Africa, where our leaders together with other stakeholders analyzed  the situation, shared success stories and lessons learned,  discussed new initiatives and made new promises. The lives of  hundreds of millions of  people in the world living with less than 1 dollar a day, especially those in Africa,  depend on whether our actions in the coming years will turn those promises into their food, shelter, education and health as the Secretary-General put it and the international community should not fail their hope.

Mr. President,

During the past year, the maintenance of international peace and security continued to face intertwined opportunities and challenges. In addition to 17 operating missions, the ongoing deployment of other peacekeeping operations in Africa is expected to create more leverage for strengthening the local peacemaking process and ultimately ending these prolonged crises.  Preventive diplomacy, conflict prevention and United Nations-led mediation efforts have helped reinforce political dialogue and national reconciliation in service of lasting peace and stability in many countries in Africa and Asia. By the same token, peace building activities have contributed to promoting peace agreements, laying the foundation for sustainable peace and development and addressing the special needs of conflict-affected States. However, besides the escalation of protracted armed conflicts and tensions in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia, the outbreak of new ones in the Balkans and the Caucasus add to our shared concern. The growing complexity of protracted conflicts has caused an abrupt surge in peacekeeping demand and overstretched the capacity of the Organization in multiple related fronts. Terrorism continues to be a serious threat to international peace and security, an assault on the principles of law and order, human rights and peaceful settlement of dispute.  In the face of those challenges, we fully support the Secretary-General’s conclusion that the crucial role of the United Nations in the maintenance of international peace and security must be reaffirmed and further strengthened. We commend and support the recent steps undertaken by the Secretary-General to improve the management of the Organization in the field of peacekeeping operations, conflict prevention and resolution, and disarmament and  stand ready to further contribute to the implementation of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy adopted by the General Assembly in 2006 on the basis of the fundamental principles of respect for national independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and non-interference in the internal affairs of States.

Mr. President,

This year marks the sixtieth anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights which has remained the key instrument for promoting universal respect for and observance of all human rights in accordance with the UN Charter and international law. While sharing the Secretary-General’s positive assessment on wide international acceptance of and consensus on human rights standards, the strengthening of tools and mechanisms for monitoring and encouraging compliance, we remain concerned about the continued trend of politicizing human rights and using human rights as a pretext to interfere into internal affairs of States, thus complicating regional and international situations and creating hurdles for the process of UN reform by making the work of UN bodies overlap. In this connection, I wish to reaffirm Viet Nam’s view that the protection and promotion of human rights can only be effective when they are in keeping with the principles of objectivity and non-selectivity and when we are able to avoid their politicization, a disease that had, for decades, paralyzed the Commission on Human Rights.

Mr. President,

          As  reported by the Secretary-General, the rise in the number and intensity of extreme weather events has become striking throughout the review period, with an increasing number of  poor people being affected by drought, floods and cyclones. The fragile security and deadly violence in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Occupied Palestinian Territories and many other conflict-ridden regions have forced millions of people into exile and internal displacement, with larger and larger numbers of civilians requiring urgent humanitarian assistance and access. Climate change and armed conflicts are making both natural and man-made disasters greater and more dangerous than ever before demanding even greater international cooperation to cope with.  We  welcome the Secretary-General’s commitment that the United Nations will enhance the partnership with regional organizations and Governments in preparing for and responding to such challenges and is committed to contributing to enhancing the partnership.

Mr. President,

In order to adapt to a vastly changed world and better fulfill its mandates under the Charter, the UN and its principal organs, including the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council and specialized agencies, must be strengthened in a more comprehensive and democratic manner. Furthermore, the experiences of the past year in mediating resolution of conflicts, mitigating consequences of natural disasters manifest even more clearly the indispensable and effective role of regional organizations. The experience also shows that the roles of the United Nations and that of regional organizations should and can be mutually strengthening each other. Viet Nam will continue to contribute to efforts aimed at making the United Nations, in close partnership with regional organizations, more representative, more effective and more responsive to the interests of Member States and its peoples.

          I thank you, Mr. President!



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