Statement by Cuba at the first consultation on the negotiation of a political declaration to commemorate the UN´s 75th Anniversary. New York, 21 February 2020.
We thank the Ambassadors of Qatar and Sweden for convening this first consultation on the political declaration to mark the 75th anniversary of the United Nations. We take note of the document Food for thought circulated on the occasion of this meeting.
We recall the adoption by consensus of the General Assembly resolution 73/299, which decided that the 75th anniversary of the United Nations would be celebrated in 2020 under the theme "The future we want, the United Nations we need: reaffirming our collective commitment to multilateralism".
The Secretary-General, in his report on the work of the Organization, stated, and I quote: "On the eve of the Organization's seventy-fifth anniversary, the Charter of the United Nations points us the way with its vision of hope for a future of coexistence and good neighborliness among people and countries that defend universal values, thus shaping our common future. The commitment to this ideal of the future is needed today more than ever.
We hope that the negotiation process of the political declaration will be inclusive, transparent, and focused on the defense of multilateralism and the central role of this Organization in the maintenance of international peace and security and the achievement of sustainable development for the well-being of present and future generations.
Today more than ever we need the true political commitment of States to the UN.
For almost 75 years, we have adopted documents, declarations and resolutions that set out our roadmap as Member States and as an international body, always reaffirming the respect for the UN Charter. Nevertheless, threats to international peace and security linger on, as well as coups d'état, promoted and financed by third countries; unconventional wars; interference in the internal affairs of States; trends towards aggressiveness over dialogue, understanding and mutual respect; hate speeches that stir up violent, xenophobic and discriminatory behavior; violations of the rights of migrants and their families; lack of access to basic health services and free, quality education; extreme poverty; lack of political will to tackle climate change; unilateral coercive measures aimed at suffocating and bringing peoples to their knees by starvation, among other scourges.
This pitiful and shameful situation is real. We must ask ourselves: What future do we want? What UN do we need? The answer is not in new concepts or theories. It is in the political will and the real and renewed commitment of the Member States to the United Nations Charter, which must be captured in this political declaration.
In this regard, we propose that the declaration encompasses the following elements:
1. The reaffirmation of the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.
2. The unrestricted adherence to international law and the principle of the sovereign equality of States.
3. The defense and promotion of multilateralism and diplomacy for peace.
4. The reaffirmation of our commitment to the peaceful settlement of disputes in such a manner that international peace and security are not endangered.
5. The prohibition on resorting to threat or to the use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations.
6. The cessation of unilateral coercive measures which constitute a violation of International Law and a threat to the sustainable development of peoples.
7. Full respect for the inalienable right of every State to choose its political, economic, social and cultural system, in the exercise of its sovereignty and of the right to self-determination of peoples, which is a premise of this Organization.
8. The commitment of Member States to fulfill their international obligations regarding economic, social and environmental development, as contained in the relevant UN documents such as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development.
According to information from this Organization, at the current pace of implementation we will not achieve the objectives set. The Secretary-General has called for this task to be undertaken with much greater urgency and energy. Enhancing international cooperation is a key element.
9. The need to conclude the Doha Development Round according to the mandates set by the World Trade Organization.
10. The commitment of Member States to comply with the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, including the financial and technological means for its implementation, in view of the threat that this phenomenon poses to human survival and the preservation of the planet, in particular of Small Island Developing States.
According to the Report of the Secretary-General on the work of the Organization, "Climate change-related disasters affect an average of 350 million people every year, and every day global warming is reversing hard-won development gains and exacerbating poverty. Biodiversity is being lost at an alarming rate.
I take this opportunity to reiterate Cuba's conviction that: "... The exercise of multilateralism and full respect for the principles and norms of International Law in order to move towards a multipolar, democratic and equitable world is required to ensure peaceful coexistence, preserve international peace and security and find lasting solutions to systemic problems," as President of the Republic, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, stated before this Assembly in September 2018.
There is no doubt that we bear the very heavy responsibility to ensure that this political declaration reaffirms the commitment of the Member States to a future of peace, justice and sustainable development for our peoples, who are the raison d'être of the United Nations.