Address by H.E.Mr. Jean-Paul Proust, Minister of State of the Principality of Monaco at the General Debate of the 60th Session of the United Nations General Assembly

17 September 2005 in New York

Mr. President,

In 1945, following a war that tore apart all the Peoples of the world and during which the most basic human rights were violated, it is here, in the United States of America, at the San Francisco Conference, that a few leading nations came together and created the United Nations. Collective security had to be restored, human rights had to be reinstated and our world needed to head towards more justice and freedom.

In sixty years, a lot has been achieved. Today, our Organization consists of 191 Member States. We expressed the wish, as many Heads of State and Government have during this Summit, that a new step is taken in favor of collective security, the respect of human rights and the fight against poverty and disease that continue to affect so many peoples.

In order to do so, we have to insure a better representation of the international community in particular within the Security Council, a new lead through the establishment of the Council of Human Rights, the achievements of the Millennium Development Goals to fight poverty and at last, a more efficient management of the Organization.

Once again, on behalf of H.S.H. Prince Albert II, I wish to pay tribute to the Presidents of the 59th and 60th Sessions of the General Assembly. Throughout our coming debates, I hope the dynamics of change will be geared.

I also pay tribute to Secretary General, Kofi Annan who has pursued those same noble objectives with staunchness and acumen.

I may reaffirm that the Principality of Monaco fully adheres to the Final Document that was adopted and will support its implementation so that we can, together, achieve new progress in the coming months.

Mr. President,

The Government of the Principality of Monaco has, over the last few years, reoriented its international cooperation policy in order to contribute, more efficiently, to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.

Thus, the main pillars of Monacos cooperation are those defined in the framework of the Millennium Development Goals: preservation of the environment in the broad sense of the term, fight against poverty, support in favor of education and healthcare.

Monacos Official Development Assistance (ODA) has been constantly on the rise. It has increased five-fold in ten years and this effort will continue in order to reach the 0.7% target. Likewise, we endorse the Declaration on innovative sources of financing for development.

Through its voluntary contributions to the United Nations and several organizations and specialized institutions, agencies and programs, including UNESCO, WHO, UNAIDS, UNICEF, UNDP, UNHCR to name a few, the Principality sponsors activities aimed at assisting developing countries and the most underprivileged people.

Over one third of cooperation financing is provided within the framework of Multilateral Assistance and of course this increase has also benefited bilateral assistance.

The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 2005 International Year of Microcredit to promote these programs worldwide. For many years, the Principality has given special attention to microcredit, in particular in its cooperation with UNDP.

Funds available through microcredit are allocated to small entrepreneurship initiatives in Africa and in particular in sub-Saharan Africa to improve the standard of living of the most vulnerable people amongst which women.

Our cooperation has been mostly directed towards the countries of the Mediterranean region and the least developed countries in Africa, especially those of Sub-Sahara Africa because we also believe in the necessity of establishing a regional solidarity network throughout the world.

The Mediterranean Sea is an ecoregion in which the Principality has been very involved historically. The implementation of cooperation plans to protect the Mediterranean environment, be it coastal and marine, is a priority.

Monacos assistance is also directed towards some French-speaking countries. Activities undertaken in these countries deal mostly with healthcare, education and fighting poverty. In addition to our governmental action, Monegasque NGOs are very committed in those countries and I insist that the Principality is ready, within its competences and financial means, to participate in initiatives aimed at enhancing health and training.

From this rostrum, H.S.H. Prince Albert II already deplored, with great sadness, during His recent Address, the extensive damages caused by Hurricane Katrina in the host country.

Almost a year ago, South-East Asia suffered an unprecedented natural disaster. The solidarity and efficiency displayed in response to this catastrophe by not only the humanitarian professionals but also by that of what is often referred to as civil society showed that resources and capacity make it possible to share responsibility for the future of Peoples to which the United Nations Charter is devoted. The Principality of Monaco has strongly mobilized its efforts by undertaking a great number of private and public actions.

The Principality of Monaco has always been a staunch defender of humanitarian law. We support in principle and believe in any action that improves precarious situations caused by natural disasters or by man.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The Principality of Monaco is a small state that enjoys a certain level of wealth. It will not change the world on its own& However, it intends to be exemplary in the field of cooperation.

Mr. President,

The creation of the Human Rights Council and the establishment of a Peacebuilding Commission will mark a turning point in the history of the Organization. Even more importantly, they are a response to a need dictated by the way multilateral relations have logically evolved.

In keeping with the document just adopted, the General Assembly will also have to:

- strengthen the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights; - establish the bureau of legal assistance within the Secretariat; - work constructively to ensure that the emerging concept of responsibility to protect will become positive law as soon as possible.

In this regard, I insist upon the duty to put an end to impunity for crimes committed against children.

The defense of rights and interests of children has always been one of our major concerns. Indeed, all act of violence perpetrated against a child is contrary to the noble principles the United Nations stand for.

To build a world fit for children, in compliance with the measures adopted during the UNGA Special Session on Children, held in May 2002, the Government of the Principality is heart fully attached to promote the concept that the most serious violations of the rights of children not fall under a statute of limitations and that we not extend the powers of national jurisdictions by providing them with universal competence in that area.

Prince Albert II, during His Address to the 59th Session of the General Assembly, has invited the international community to give thought, to plan for the study of means that will make it possible to react against the impunity that continues to prevail with regard to the most heinous crimes committed against children.

In this perspective, the Principality has insisted upon promoting this concept within the resolution of the Rights of the child, adopted last year by the General Assembly, and it has reaffirmed its position during the Human Rights Commission, held last April in Geneva. It is the wish of the Principality to pursue its undertaking with the support of the international community on those crucial matters. In other respects, the Monegasque Government has paid close attention and contributed to the global study on violence against children led by Professor Pinheiro that will present its conclusion in October 2006.

Likewise, the Principality joined actively the triennial program of action (2005-2007) entitled Childhood and violence set by the Council of Europe whose conclusions, we hope, will enable us like that of the global study on violence against children, to make specific recommendations to States. The Principality of Monaco will always answer positively to take or support any international initiative aimed at enhancing the protection of childhood.

Mr. President,

Respect for the environment is among those concerns that guide our actions. It was in your country, Sweden, just over three decades ago that environmental law was born. The Stockholm Conference was the founder of a discipline that met a need: organizing protection of natural resources and of our environment. Following in the footsteps of Prince Albert Ist of Monaco, Founder of the Oceanographic Institute, Prince Albert IInd decided to ratify the Kyoto Protocol and Monaco stands ready to cooperate in studies and fora on the future of our Planet.

UNEP is no longer the ideal forum to coordinate action and ensure its effectiveness because of the extremely rapid expansion of this field, as well as the adoption of many conventions, protocols and agreements. That is why we support the idea of creating a United Nations Environmental Organization.

Mr. President,

Globalization must not make us forget that we come from different regions and cultures that should enrich each other and not be a source of clashes and conflicts.

We believe in interaction between the UN and regional organizations; one sets the general rules and the others facilitate their implementation at a local level.

The reforms just adopted at the High-level Plenary strengthen the unique position of the General Assembly as the guarantor of the systems coherence.

Monaco will continue to make its contribution to building a better world, humble but firm and always respectful of our differences.

I thank you Mr. President.

Unofficial translation