UN2K: Iraq Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz
HIS EXCELLENCY MR. TARIQ AZIZ
DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER,
HEAD OF IRAQ'S DELEGATION
TO THE UN TMILLENIM.TNI SUMIMIT
We would like to express our best wishes for the peoples of the United Nations in the 21st century which we hope to be a century of peace, justice and progress for all.
It is true that this occasion is an opportunity for contemplation To be meaningful, this contemplation should be sincere. Hence let me present our vision and concerns sincerely and frankly.
When we discuss the role of the United Nations in the 21st century, we all agree on the importance attached to the UN success in countering future challenges and other continuous challenges that we still face. To be successful in countering such challenges, the United Nations should reflect the will of all the peoples of the United Nations.
The UN Charter was drafted on this basis. Further its provisions have stipulated that the interest sought is common and collective interest. However the most important fact of the past era was that the ability to properly apply the provisions of the UN Charter was not often possible due to the influences of the powerful states that dominated international resolutions for their own interests. This situation was aggravated during 1990s as a result of the US hegemony and domination on the international organization for the benefit of its imperialist
The essential step in this move is to reform the decision-making structures in the United Nations, particularly the Security Council so that it could really reflect the will of all member states. There is no guarantee, of course, for the proper application of the UN Charter unless all states, both large and small ones, adhere to the principles of the Charter, plarticularly the principle of equal sovereignty of states, without which the United Nations in the 21st century ill tie an extension of the status quo.
We disagree with the optimistic picture of globalization contained in the Secretary-General's report and we do not think that globalization will bring about benefit for all. What we have seen so far is that the benefits of globalization are concentrated in few states.
The core of globalization is to achieve economic hegemony of few rich states, the United States of America in particular, as well as the hegemony of western consumer culture, threatening the peoples' cultures, methods of living and spiritual values.
I Further, we cautiously look at inviting transnational companies and lion governmental organizations to take part in the work of the United Nations, and we stress the need for studying in-depth the criterion Of Such partnership, its corresponding obligations and the prevention of its adverse Impact on the principles of the international organization contained in the Charter, such as equal sovereignty and non- interference.
Ironically, the United Nations whose Charter provided for the protection of man rights ,accepts to be a tool to violate the fundamental human rights through the comprehensive and unrestricted use of sanctions albeit the sufferings those functions inflict upon the targeted peoples. In the case of Iraq, the Iraqi victims of these unjust and unrestricted sanctions amounted to more than a million of children, women and elderly people during the past ten years. Therefore, it is not enough to only admit that sanctions are inactive tool that leads to counterproductive results, and to dubiously call for directing them in a better way: rather their use should be restricted and they should not trespass the scope of the UN Charter. They also should not be a hostage, as in the case off Iraq, of the will of the United States of America which hijacked die resolution on the lifting of sanctions on Iraq from the Security Council in the service of its own interests and hostile policies.
The United Nations cannot escape its moral responsibility for the consequences of sanctions.This responsibility starts once the sanctions are imposed, rather than following their catastrophic sequences.
We cautiously and dubiously look at the so-called humanitarian intervention.since this call may be used, and it has been actually used. to Interfere in internal affairs of other states by the influential states. particularly the United States of America. We disagree with the assumption that the principle of sovereignty and the humanitarian international W, are at variance, Of NOW we have to choose one
As regards the main challenges the world faces in the 21st century, particularly the liberation from poverty and securing an ecologically safe future for the coming generations we believe that success in countering these challenges