Much ‘unfinished business’ on anti-poverty goals, Czech Prime Ministers tells UN

Prime Minister Jiri Rusnok of the Czech Republic. UN Photo/Ryan Brown

27 September 2013 – Progress on the universally accepted global targets is uneven and there is a lot of unfinished business, the Prime Minister of the Czech Republic today said, reiterating his Government’s commitment to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Addressing the United Nations General Assembly high-level debate in New York, Prime Minister Jirí Rusnok said he supports the establishment of a “single overarching post-2015 framework” for the time-frame after the MDGs deadline, which will “link eradication of poverty in all its dimensions and the promotion of sustainable development.”

He urged future goals to be universal for all countries, but also realistic and taking into account the actual possibilities of each country.

In his statement, Mr. Rusnok noted that the Czech Republic, with its historic experience of an undemocratic regime, is ready to share its experience from its democratic transition process.

Turning to other topics in his speech, the Prime Minister reiterated the need for a politically negotiated settlement in Syria in line with the implement the 2012 Geneva Communiqué.

“The Czech Republic is supporting and will continue to support the efforts of the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross to relieve the growing humanitarian needs in Syria and in the neighbouring countries,” said Mr. Rusnok.

He also noted developments in Myanmar and “strongly encouraged” the Government’s announcement to actively pursue the process of amending the national constitution to improve democratic standards in the country.

In his speech, Mr. Rusnok also highlighted the importance of UN peacekeeping operations around the world, and announced his country’s intention to “substantially increase” the presence of its military in those operations.

The General Debate continues through 1 October.

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