– As delivered –
Statement by H.E. Tijjani Muhammad Bande, President of the 74th Session of the United Nations General Assembly
7 October 2019
It is an honour to address the opening of the Fourth Committee.
I congratulate the Chair, Ambassador Mohammed Hussein Bahr Aluloom, and Bureau Members on their election and I wish you a successful tenure.
The Fourth Committee has been tasked with a wide range of agenda items. I urge you to work diligently and in good faith to achieve consensus on all the issues under consideration.
Decolonization is one of the pending issues that are at the core of the UN Charter. Much progress has been made on the right of self-determination, but seventeen cases still require our attention.
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) requires predictable and sustained financing to ensure stability and security for Palestinian refugees. Despite contributions by donor countries and organizations, UNWRA’s fragile financial situation is still a matter of concern.
I call upon all Member States to continue supporting the Agency and its vital work on emergency, recovery and reconstruction.
It is our shared responsibility to ensure that outer space is preserved for peaceful purposes and for the benefit of humankind, without discrimination. Our main focus should be on finding ways to reap the benefits of science and technology to invest in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Let us utilize space-based services and technologies to enhance our understanding and equip us to address key issues for the SDGs, such as mitigating climate change and better preparation against natural disasters.
Peacekeeping is a key item on the agenda of the Fourth Committee. Realistic and achievable mandates must go hand-in-hand with adequate funding for UN Peacekeeping Missions to fulfill their responsibilities on the ground, oftentimes in dangerous situations.
The Secretary-General’s Action for Peacekeeping initiative, sets a clear roadmap for all stakeholders to renew their collective engagement. We must all support this endeavour.
The men and women who don the blue helmet in their efforts to sustain peace exemplify the courage and empathy that is the basis of the United Nations. We owe it to our Peacekeepers to explore all feasible solutions and synergies in order to make our work more effective. This is one way to honour the many Peacekeepers who were killed in action.
Peacekeeping is a key item on the agenda of the Fourth Committee. Realistic and achievable mandates must go hand-in-hand with adequate funding for UN Peacekeeping Missions to fulfill their responsibilities on the ground, oftentimes in dangerous situations
Following weeks of consultations earlier this year, Member States reached agreement on a new C-34 report structure and programme of work. This is good news.
It is critical that the C-34 continues to carefully review proposals on the table during its next session, taking place from February to March 2020. This will enable progress on substantive elements aimed at enhancing the capacity of the United Nations in this domain.
Furthermore, with regard to special political missions, we must continue to improve the role of the United Nations in the pacific settlement of disputes for the maintenance of international peace and security. This includes: mediation; conflict prevention; conflict resolution; peacebuilding; and sustaining peace.
As we approach the Seventy-Fifth Anniversary of the United Nations, we must recommit to the ideals of its founders and recall that we are nations united. Let us be defined by our actions.
I thank you, in advance, for your disposition to work constructively on the key issues before this Committee. I look forward to hearing from you throughout your deliberations on this important agenda.
I am confident that by striving together we will succeed in delivering for all.
I wish you all the best throughout the Seventy-Fourth Session.