OLAF SCHOLZ, Chancellor of Germany, said 50 years ago two German States joined the United Nations: the German Democratic Republic and the Federal Republic of Germany. Their accession was preceded by a visionary policy of détente. It required both States to commit to resolve conflicts without force, renunciate any revisionism and hold a foreign policy that did not ignore the cold war realities. He mentioned the beginnings of their membership not for historical interest, but because the prohibition of the use of force still remains the United Nations unfulfilled core pledge. In addition, the inviolability of borders and the sovereign equality of States must be defended by everyone in today’s multipolar world. “And because we today, especially today, need the courage, creative energy and will to fill in the rifts,” he said. “The rifts which are deeper than ever.”
The world needs more cooperation that strengthens existing alliances and seeks new partners to reduce the risk of excessively one-sided dependencies. “Anyone seeking order in a multipolar world has to start here at the United Nations,” he said, adding that is why Germany supports the UN system and is its second-largest contributor after the United States. Only the United Nations, using the values enshrined in its Charter, can fully realize the aspirations of universal representation and sovereign equality for all. He added that the obstruction of a few members, no matter their influence, does not negate that the overwhelming majority of States agree on many issues. “All of us have an interest in ensuring that the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of our countries are respected,” he added.
Turning to the challenge of anthropogenic climate change, he said traditional industrialized countries have a very special responsibility to fight against the climate crisis even as many other countries are today’s biggest emitters. Economic development must be decoupled from carbon dioxide emissions and solutions and technologies are available and being used. Germany honours its pledges on international climate financing and tripled its contribution to €6 billion in 2022, up from €2 billion in 2014 and €4 billion in 2020. Germany holds an equal ambition to achieve the Global Goals. “Climate action or development, this trade-off will not work,” he said. Germany plans to use next year’s Summit of the Future to accelerate the push to implement the 2030 Agenda, he added.
Turning to reform at the United Nations, he said the composition of the Security Council is the most obvious example of how the Organization does not currently represent the reality of a multipolar word. Welcoming that more partners, including three permanent Council members, want to see progress on reform, he stressed that Africa, Asia and Latin America deserve greater representation. Under this premise, a text with various options can be negotiated. “No country should obstruct these open-ended negotiations with excessively high demands,” he said. He said his thoughts remain with people in Sudan, eastern Congo, Ukraine and other places for whom peace is a distant dream. The Russian Federation President can end the Ukraine war at any time with one single order and must understand that Member States are serious about the Organization’s principles. “That in the multipolar world of the twenty-first century, we do not see a place for revisionism and imperialism,” he added.
Addressing world leaders at the UN General Assembly on Tuesday, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz stressed that in an increasingly interdependent world, “a policy for peace must not stop on our own doorstep.”