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At General Assembly, Eritrea criticizes ‘dominant powers’ for impeding vital overhaul of UN

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Foreign Minister Osman Mohammed Saleh of Eritrea addresses the General Assembly. UN Photo/Kim Haughton


30 September 2014 – From the General Assembly podium today, Eritrea called for a fundamental overhaul of the United Nation, charging that it has failed in its prime goals of securing world peace and ending poverty due to cynical determination of the dominant Powers to maintain control.

“The United Nations, the organization that ostensibly represents the entire community of nations and the peoples of the world, remains stuck in the past,” Foreign Minister Osman Saleh said on the final day of the Assembly’s annual high-level meeting. “It remains thoroughly dominated by the few and has marginalized the overwhelming majority. Its institutions and structures are an anachronism in the modern world.

“More crucially, the United Nations has fallen far short of playing the primary role in the pursuit of the fundamental objectives for which it was established,” he added, citing the maintenance of global peace and security, ending poverty, ensuring sustainable development, advancing human rights, avoiding epidemics, respecting sovereignty and non-interference in the affairs of others, ensuring justice and equality and protecting the environment.

To restore the UN’s relevance and credibility as a truly representative institution of all nations and peoples, it is imperative to fundamentally restructure, democratize and rebuild the world Organization, but although UN reform has formally been on the agenda for nearly two decades, “we are no nearer to change because of the stubborn and cynical opposition of the dominant powers,” he said.

“Given the determination of these Powers to maintain their control of the UN and its unrepresentative and undemocratic character, the chances of genuine change in the coming few years are indeed slender,” he added.

“Undoubtedly, the world is facing a very grave and dangerous situation. To paraphrase the Secretary General of the United Nations, H.E. Mr. Ban Ki-moon, this is a ‘terrible time for the principles enshrined in the United Nations Charter.’"

Echoing many of those same sentiments, the Permanent Representative of Benin, Jean-Francis Régis Zinsou, stressed the urgent need to strengthen the effectiveness of the United Nations in conflict prevention. He said the facts demonstrate that peace, security, good governance at national and international levels…are the best guarantees of stability,” he said.

http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=48959#.VCu3e9LF9uJ
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