Russian President Vladimir Putin UN2K Speech
of the Russian Federation
to the United Nations
136 East 67 Street
New York N. Y 10021
PRESIDENT OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION
VLADIMIR V. PUTIN
ADDRESS TO THE MILLENNIUM SUMMIT
New York, September 6,2000
Ladies and Gentlemen,
This summit is really the last one in this millennium. But it will go down in history as the Millennium Summit by a different reason.
We and our predecessors have done much to fill in this symbolic image with a profound meaning. The second half of the century, its international constituent unconditionally passed under the UN sign. The very fact of existence of this organization was a guarantee from an arbitrariness of hegemony, from right to absolute truth and dictates.
When the United Nations was being established many of the states represented here have simply not been on the world map. But the norms of the international behavior were being formed taking them also into account. Today they are accepted by all and serve the interests of the international community.
The principal result is obvious. What seemed unattainable half a century ago today has become the norm of international relations. Respect for each other and the UN instruments helped the countries and peoples to learn the art of a dialogue and look for common decisions. Even global confrontation could not impede a joint work in the extreme crisis and even dead-end situations.
All that can be called the "UN School" without any overstatement.
A political term given to leaders is usually not so long. We had luck to be born and live during the threshold epoch. We were lucky to be called for by our peoples at the momentous time. That is why a natural duty of a politician is to see at least one step ahead.
We are bound to give a chance to those who will come after us.
The twentieth century will remain in history as a century of contradictions. It has become an epoch of grandiose achievements and terrible wars, a century of revolutionary breakthroughs and profound disillusionments. But our countries and peoples managed to draw off hatred. They managed to overcome the Cold War with its global confrontation.
That is an accomplishment of the United Nations.
Preceding generations have left us a unique organization as heritage. The United Nations have learned to solve and it solves the most complicated world problems. It is here where the international regime of human rights — the most important characteristic of the modern world was born. This universal instrument proved to be not vulnerable to ideological speculations, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has never been only a declaration. Up to this day it definitely affects our lives.
We are convinced: we need to renovate and improve the UN mechanisms. This is the imperative of our time. But no reforms should make loose its fundamental principles.