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H.E. Dr. R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa
Minister for Foreign Affairs

22 September 2011

  • Statement: English (Check against delivery)

Statement Summary

RADEN MOHAMMAD MARTY MULIANA NATALEGAWA, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Indonesia, speaking on behalf of the Asia-Pacific States, said he was confident that the text to be adopted reflected many common concerns in the area of racism and related intolerances. Today the international community had convened to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the Durban outcomes, he said, recalling that it had met in 2001 not merely as Governments, but as peoples of the world who needed to fight against such prejudices with determination and perseverance, because they were a blight on humanity. The anti-racism struggle was one for human rights, dignity and the eradication of poverty. The adoption of the Durban outcomes underscored that, given the requisite political will, consensus could be reached on all issues, he said.

At the 2009 Geneva Review, the international community had collectively resolved to reinvigorate the political commitment of Member States to strengthen the anti-racism agenda, he said, noting that after a decade, the world must ask itself if it had truly unified its efforts to address the issues. It was a matter of great concern that, despite the efforts of many groups and nations and the ample evidence of its terrible toll, racism persisted. The eyes of the world, and those of the victims, were upon the General Assembly today, he said. It must find a new unity and make a concerted effort, particularly since new forms and manifestations of intolerance continued to emerge. There was a joint realization that discrimination did not go away by itself, but must be addressed seriously. Otherwise,it would remain a cause of social unrest and violence.

History was replete with terrible wrongs, manifested in many atrocities, he said. Despite the victory over apartheid, there remained a plethora of discriminatory laws affecting the lives of whole communities around the world. Slavery, slave trading and apartheid were major historical sources of racism and related intolerances. Past atrocities were manifest today in the form of poverty, underdevelopment and social and economic exclusion, which had affected developing countries over the years. Mobilization of the political will to effectively implement the Durban outcomes would enable the international community to truly combat racism in all spheres of life and in all parts of the world, including those under foreign occupation, he said, proclaiming the commitment and determination of the Asia-Pacific States to make the fight against all forms of racism a high priority.

Source: GA/11149