40th Plenary Meeting of General Assembly: 50th Session - Part 4

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24-Oct-1995 01:26:25
World leaders adopt declaration to shape United Nations for next century, as special commemorative meeting concludes.

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The largest ever gathering of world leaders pledged to give to the twenty-first century a United Nations equipped, financed and structured to serve effectively the peoples in whose name it was established, as the three- day special commemorative meeting of the General Assembly for the fiftieth anniversary of the Organization concluded late this evening.

By means of a resolution, Member States and observers adopted the "Declaration on the Occasion of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the United Nations", exactly 50 years after the Charter of the Organization entered into force. The resolution was introduced by the Chairman of the Preparatory Committee for the fiftieth anniversary, Richard Butler (Australia).

The document declares that the fiftieth anniversary of the United Nations must be seized as an opportunity to redirect the Organization to greater service to humankind, "especially to those who are suffering and are deeply deprived. This is the practical and moral challenge of our time". It focuses on peace, development, equality, justice and the work of the United Nations.

World leaders pledge themselves to promote the peaceful settlement of disputes, reaffirm the right of self-determination of all peoples, call for extraordinary measures by all countries to confront extreme poverty, reiterate the equal rights of men and women and reaffirm that all human rights are universal and indivisible.

They declare that relations between States must be based on respect for the rule of law and call for a revitalization of the General Assembly, an expansion of the Security Council and the strengthening of the Economic and Social Council. They stress that Member States must meet, in full and on time, their obligation to bear the expenses of the Organization.

In his concluding remarks tonight, Secretary-General Boutros Boutros- Ghali said the largest gathering of world leaders in history had expressed confidence in the future of the United Nations with eloquence. "We have listened to the wisdom of these leaders." Together they had given the world an "agenda for tomorrow" covering every aspect of human society. The dialogue of nations sought by the founding fathers of the United Nations had taken place in friendship and fraternity and the "spirit of San Francisco" should guide the international community during the next 50 years.

The President of the General Assembly, Diogo Freitas do Amaral (Portugal) said the ideals of the United Nations had been constantly referred to during the last three days and there was now a need to agree on the means to achieve those ideals. The need for bold reform was recognized and the political commitment demonstrated over the last three days must continue. The work on the strengthening of the United Nations had begun. The urgent financial crisis must be faced.

The special meeting was addressed by 91 heads of State, eight vice- presidents, one crown prince, 37 prime ministers, 10 deputy prime ministers, 21 foreign ministers, nine chairmen of delegations and 23 observers -- a total of 200 speakers.

The dominant theme woven through the speeches of the majority of participants was reform of the United Nations, with many calling for an expansion of the membership of the Security Council. The need for greater transparency, democratization and accountability in that and other United Nations organs was stressed. Deploring the financial crisis, many called attention to the need for Member States to pay their dues in full and on time. In addition, participants suggested that the current financing regime be restructured and that new and innovative sources of funding be sought.

Strongly reaffirming the principles enshrined in the Charter, many world leaders highlighted the fact that the United Nations is an Organization of sovereign States and that respect for the principles of sovereignty, territorial integrity, independence and non-intervention in countries' internal affairs must continue to guide its actions. Equality among all States -- large and small, rich and poor -- must form the basis for international relations, especially in the area of trade, they emphasized. Addressing the issue of the future of peace-keeping, participants called for a greater United Nations role in preventive diplomacy to avert the outbreak or spread of conflict. In that context, many welcomed increased cooperation with regional organizations.

Addressing the special meeting this afternoon and evening were President Sali Berisha of Albania; President Fidel V. Ramos of the Philippines; President Robert Gabriel Mugabe of Zimbabwe; President Algirdas Mykolas Brazauskas of Lithuania; President Martti Ahtisaari of Finland; President Levon Ter-Petrossian of Armenia; President Jean-Bertrand Aristide of Haiti; President Bakili Muluzi of Malawi; President Ernesto Samper Pizano of Colombia; President Milan Kucan of Slovenia; and President Islam A. Karimov of Uzbekistan.

Also, President Juan Carlos Wasmosy of Paraguay; Sheik Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Amir of Kuwait; President Joaquim Alberto Chissano of Mozambique; President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom of Maldives; President Carlos Roberto Reina of Honduras; President Vaclav Havel of the Czech Republic; President Arpad Goncz of Hungary; President Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle of Chile; President Carlos Saul Menem of Argentina; President Emomali Rakhmonov of Tajikistan; President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya of Burundi; General Idriss Deby of Chad; President Mahmane Ousmane of Niger; and President Paul Biya of Cameroon.

In addition, statements were made by Vice-President Taha M. Marouf of Iraq; Vice-President Abdourabou Mansour Hadi of Yemen; Vice-President Cesar Paredes Canto of Peru; Crown Prince Sidi Mohamed of Morocco; Prime Minister Sir Anerood Jugnauth of Mauritius; Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Lester B. Bird of Antigua and Barbuda; Prime Minister David Oddsson of Iceland; Prime Minister Ingvar Carlsson of Sweden; Prime Minister Habib Thiam of Senegal; Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Maxime Carlot Korman of Vanuatu; Prime Minister Marc Forne Molne of Andorra; Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong of Singapore; Prime Minister P.V. Narasimha Rao of India; and Prime Minister Poul Nyrup Rasmussen of Denmark.

Also, First Prime Minister Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia; Prime Minister Sitiveni Ligamamada Rabuka of Fiji; Prime Minister Sir James Fitz-Allen Mitchell of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; Prime Minister Denzil Douglas of Saint Kitts and Nevis; Prime Minister Daniel Kablan Duncan of Cote d'Ivoire; Prime Minister Ibrahim Boubacar Keita of Mali; Secretary of State Angelo Cardinal Sodano of the Holy See; Deputy Prime Minister for Cabinet Affairs Sayid Fahad Mahmoud Al-Said of Oman; Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Guido de Marco of Malta; Minister for Foreign Affairs Farouk Al-Shara of Syria; and Minister for Foreign Affairs Habib Ben Yahia of Tunisia.

Other statements were made by Minister for Foreign Affairs Shaikh Mohamed Mubarak Al-Khalifa of Bahrain; Minister for Foreign Affairs Dawa Tsering of Bhutan; Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka of Kenya; Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Mouzaoir Abdallah of Comoros; Minister for Foreign Affairs Najibullah Lafraie of Afghanistan; Daudi Ngelautwa Mwakawago, Chairman of the Delegation of the United Republic of Tanzania; and Robert E. Millette, Chairman of the Delegation of Grenada.

Also speaking this afternoon and evening were Nikenike Vurobaravu, Deputy Secretary-General of the South Pacific Forum; Edwin Carrington, Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community; Salim Ahmed Salim, Secretary- General of the Organization of African Unity; Wilhelm Hoynck, Secretary- General of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe; Carlos Moneta, Permanent Secretary of the Latin American Economic System; Cesar Gaviria, Secretary-General of the Organization of American States; Tang Chengyuan, Secretary-General of the Asian-African Legal Consultative Committee; Shamshad Ahmad, Secretary-General of the Economic Cooperation Organization; Enrique Roman-Morey, Secretary-General of the Agency for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America and the Caribbean; Humberto Celli Gerbasi, President of the Latin American Parliament; and Roberto Herrera Caceres, Secretary-General of the Central American Integration System.

The General Assembly will meet again at 10 a.m. Thursday, 26 October, to begin its commemoration of the tenth anniversary of the International Youth Year.

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