Founding UN values must be upheld to overcome problems: Mangala


The founding principles of the United Nations such as pluralism, human rights, respect for diversity and the principle of working together should be upheld in order to overcome the problems faced by the world at present, Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera said today.

The founding principles of the United Nations such as pluralism, human rights, respect for diversity and the principle of working together should be upheld in order to overcome the problems faced by the world at present, Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera said today.

Addressing an event held at the UN Compound in Colombo to mark the 71st anniversary of the United Nations (UN), the Minister said it was his firm belief that no matter how hard it may seem or how challenging it may be the values upon which the United Nations was founded should be protected.

“The challenges before us in the world are daunting. Effects of climate change, conflict, refugees, rise of violent extremism and intolerance, threats to human rights, terrorism–all these and more pose considerable challenges. That’s why we need to uphold our values,” he said.

He said the UN should take the lead often to create awareness among the people that our planet is too small and our destinies too intertwined for us as human beings not to realise that while we respect diversity, we are ultimately one human family.

While highlighting the UN, Sri Lanka partnership and thanking the UN for its cooperation extended over the years, Minister Samaraweera said the UN has helped the world to achieve a lot over the last 71 years.

“We value the work of the UN in Sri Lanka. The support provided by the UN to us at this important time is invaluable,” he said and thanked the UN Country Team in Sri Lanka for their dedication and commitment in Sri Lanka’s quest of pursuing the goals of strengthening democracy, forging reconciliation, ensuring equitable and inclusive economic development and sustaining peace.

Speaking at the event, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, Una McCauley said times are changing in Sri Lanka, and so is the UN.

“We are committed to do things differently. We are investing in innovation with a vision to become a forward-looking UN. During the Secretary-General’s recent visit, he stated that our staff is the backbone of the great work we do in Sri Lanka and I could not agree more,” she said.

Caption: Minister Mangala Samaraweera and UN Resident Coordinator Una McCauley were seen together during the UN Day yesterday. (Lahiru Pothmulla)

Video by Indika Sri Aravinda

Pix by Pradeep Dilrukshana

 



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