General Debate
    His Excellency
    Navinchandra Ramgoolam
    Prime Minister

    Statement summary

    NAVINCHANDRA RAMGOOLAM, Prime Minister of Mauritius, said the international community should address four areas of security: economic, environmental, human and legal. Regarding economic security, the current turmoil had especially affected small island developing States. The stalled international trade talks were regrettable and, when they were active, were held in sectoral and often restricted forums. It was imperative that the international community ensured that sectoral frameworks had universal membership and that the United Nations took a holistic view of global economic, financial, trade and development issues. While the United Nations had shaped the international economic order in the 1970s, it had the responsibility now to have an overview of global economic development, with the Economic and Social Council having prominence in implementing reforms. Food security must also be addressed, along with racism, as well as youth participation in development and security policies and programmes.

    Turning to the environment, disruptions from climate change posed a grave threat to global security, and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change was the primary forum for negotiating a global response, he said. Small island developing States were particularly vulnerable, and relied on the international community for their security. For its part, Mauritius had pursued a sustainable development strategy, including engaging in a national consultation process to formulate strategies and policies to protect the environment, deliver social justice and create a sustainable economy.

    The area of human security included disarmament, he said, warning that the failure to resolve issues continued to undermine global development and security. A significant reduction in the production of conventional weapons and a world free of nuclear weapons were the ultimate goals, he said. The international community also needed to follow up on the Global Strategy to Combat Terrorism and to enhance international cooperation in that regard. He also urged General Assembly delegates to recommit efforts to fight drug trafficking, as part of a global strategy to ensure human security. The high-level meeting last June had renewed the political commitment of Governments to halt and reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS and, among other things, to ensure that by 2015 no child was born with HIV.

    Legal security required an appropriate legal framework for the redress of grievances or the settlement of disputes, he said, citing a dispute involving his country and the United Kingdom over the Chagos Archipelago. Prior to independence, that archipelago was excised from Mauritius in disregard of United Nations resolutions and declared the so-called British Indian Ocean Territory. When Mauritius had announced in 2004 that it would refer the dispute to the International Court of Justice, the United Kingdom amended its earlier declaration, in order to oust the jurisdiction of the Court with respect to certain disputes with a member or former member of the Commonwealth. It illustrated the kinds of problems a State could have in settling a claim under international law. He called on the United Nations to keep under review the whole issue of dispute settlements and to set standards of conduct for all States. He was pleased that the General Assembly had taken mediation as its current session’s theme. He said the United Nations should lead by example and must, among other things, give the sincere and strong support required to implement reform at the United Nations, the Security Council and the General Assembly.

    He looked forward to a more all-inclusive United Nations system that could effectively address issues of international security with the admission of Palestine as a Member State. The United Nations and the international community had a duty to restore to the Palestinian people their dignity and right to statehood and security, he said. He welcomed the statement by President Mahmoud Abbas that Palestine extended its hands to the Israeli government and Israeli people for peacemaking and for building cooperative relations between the States of Palestine and Israel. He also welcomed the emergence of South Sudan as an independent and sovereign State and its admission to the United Nations.


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