THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT OF MONGOLIA, PRESS & COMMUNICATIONS DIVISION

www.president.mn

2015-09-29




STATEMENT BY PRESIDENT OF MONGOLIA, AT THE GENERAL DEBATE OF THE 70TH SESSION OF THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY



New York, 29 September, 2015

Mr. President,
Mr. Secretary-General,
Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

My heartfelt congratulations to you, Mr. President of the General Assembly. You can count on my delegation’s full support during the jubilee session and the year ahead.

Mr. President,
We are commemorating the 70th anniversary of the United Nations. As a family of nations, our hopes for peace and progress, as expressed in the UN’s Charter still resonate deeply today. The UN is designed to uphold humanity’s primary aspirations:
-To live in peace
-To enjoy equal rights
-To aspire to everlasting happiness
The UN has tirelessly served these noble purposes for 7 decades. If the UN did not exist, most of humanity would have ended up in violent confrontations and would have faced more arduous, complex challenges than occurred.
We, together, achieved a lot and have drawn a better course. The number of sovereign nations has quadrupled since 1945. The world's economic output has increased fivefold. Human beings enjoy longer, healthier lives. We are more literate and educated.

Today, the world has achieved the highest degree of international cooperation in history. Starting with the founding of the UN, governments have steadily invested more and more in new means of cooperation.

These tools create new options, more space for compromises, and more legal frameworks than humankind has ever possessed.

The UN has justly become the primary universal organization working for peace, instead of war; prosperity, instead of poverty; and instead of human rights violations, a dignified life for all.
Hence, I would like to state that the past 70 years of humanity were “the best 70 years ever”.
The founding of the UN, a historic milestone, connects our past, present and future. All of humankind is poised to make another great stride toward a new, better reality. I am hopeful for the future.
Because we have the UN.
Because we have useful experiences to tackle today’s challenges.
Because a new generation of humankind is rising.
The new generation has creative solutions to challenges and see in them, new opportunities.
They share knowledge and advance technologies.

Mr. President,
At this moment, more than ever in history, we share a common destiny, as a family of nations. Yet, despite our achievements, billions of people still live in forbidding conditions. Our home - “Mother Earth” - is becoming a more turbulent place and in fragile health.
World War II is seven decades behind us. And the arms race of the Cold War is two decades gone. Many military conflicts, today, are not tied to defending a particular territory, but are motivated by borderless ideological, criminal, or religious goals.

Paradoxically, although we are more aware of these challenges and understand them better than ever, we seem unable to tackle them decisively and effectively.
That is why we have gathered here and embarked on a momentous new journey to do much better, to transform our world.
The only way to bring peace and stability is through a system of rules-norms, laws and institutions that every country agrees to abide by, in exchange for the benefits of peace and stability.
If the UN fails to adopt a system of laws, we all will fail.

The future is not only about the UN.
The future is about all of us.
It's about our community.
It's about our family.
Therefore, we have no right to fail.
We recently showed that we can make positive changes.

Mr. President,
At the dawn of the new century, we adopted and have since implemented the Millennium Development Goals. We achieved many targets, yet some – failed to achieve. Still, by and large, the global community passed the test. We learned lessons about working together and made huge strides towards achieving positive goals.
With the 2030 Agenda, the international community produced a new history-making document. The entire United Nations family agreed on this roadmap towards sustainable development. Now humanity has a truly universal, ambitious action plan for the upcoming 15 years.

A consensus-based, global platform, the Agenda is for all, because every single human holds a stake in our planet’s future. The 17 goals and 169 targets are real. Yet, they also embody the dream of humankind. Never before in history have nations reached such a universal and unanimous agreement.
Our historic 2030 Agenda is comprehensive and sustainable. We agreed on urgent targets, on a broad range of economic and social challenges, and on environmental emergencies.
Isn’t it miraculous! With one voice, the entire world shouldered a mountain of responsibilities and adopted these bold goals:

I recognize the overarching objectives for global sustainable development.
I distinguish that is for literally saving the mother earth for the future.
I accept that for saving the happy, equal human race.
I believe that is building inclusive capable institutions and creating prosperous, peaceful, open, just, equitable societies.
In order to advance them, the family of nations needs a robust, inclusive and open mechanism. We must have reliable implementing, monitoring and accountability regulations and institutions in place.
I appeal to every Member State to adopt national laws and policies to implement the Sustainable Development Goals. Such laws and policies would ensure their sustainability.

Mr. President,
I am deeply proud of my country’s contributions to the common causes of humanity.
Over the last quarter-century, Mongolia has relentlessly strived to build an open and just society with a free market economy, participatory democracy, and environmental- conscientious policies.
We made notable progress in the areas of transparency of governance, citizens’ participation, and the reduction of corruption, as well as poverty.
- In the last quarter-century, the life expectancy of Mongolians increased by 7 years.
- Our GDP increased more than 20-fold.
- We believe in human rights and human creativity, and we foster private initiatives. Our private sector generated more than 80 percent of our GDP growth.
- My country, within a single generation, peacefully transformed from one of the most isolated and closed regimes in the world to one of its most vibrant and open democracies.
- Mongolia also created one of the most unique, open, competitive and fair election systems in our region. It has nationwide electronic voting and biometric voter registration. We no longer use the wooden or paper boxes or finger inks. And public participation goes beyond electronic voting.
- Corruption is still a big threat. Yet, in the past 5 years, with transparent, determined, enforceable policies, our country’s corruption index dropped one third, according to Transparency International. We will continue to block the menace of corruption head on.
- Mongolia is among the top countries in the world by the number of media tools used per capita. We have the most open, plural, free-of-censorship, private media, including social media, and burgeoning internet use. We have slightly more than three million citizens, yet it feels like there are three million journalists, too! New media technologies, transparency, and public scrutiny make our society much healthier.
- We have adopted and are implementing a set of laws related to an open, fair, service- oriented judiciary. Because the process takes place under strict, civil monitoring, people’s confidence in a fair court of law is being restored. We also created regulations and institutions regarding public hearings and participatory democracy. And we are prudently enforcing a law called “Glass Account” – the Budget Transparency Law, which requires full disclosure of public expenditures.
- Education is key to human development and the country’s development. More than one third of our population is engaged in educational activities. More student-centered than previously, our education system emphasizes their practical involvement in learning. Our government also now covers tuition, if a Mongolian citizen is accepted into one of the world’s top universities.
- We believe in gender equality and women’s empowerment. Mongolia is a strong supporter of the UN in this cause. For societies to advance, we need more women in public service at all levels – local and global. If women hold more positions of power, we will have less suffering and conflict, and more harmony and civic engagement.
All these efforts, on the part of Mongolian citizens, constitute a just, transparent, inclusive, accountable and action-oriented platform to guide us on a sustainable development path. I am confident that building on these bedrock successes and decisively moving forward go well with your appeal, Mr. President, for the "New Commitment to Action".

Mr. President,
Today, the world faces a shocking range of new challenges on a global scale:
- From weapons of mass destruction to global warming.
- From human right violations to humanitarian disasters.
- From heinous crimes and mass terror to the breakdown of sovereign states.
- From an uncertain supply of energy, food, and water to new challenges to freedom and security.
When we face global challenges, we must admit one thing: no one country – big or small – can address them on its own. Therefore, the coordinated actions of all players and countries are needed.
When all cultures and civilizations unite, we can tackle global challenges. COP21, this year in Paris, will be the first new test. It will require the widest possible cooperation by all countries.

We all must bear responsibility for protecting Planet Earth and its ecosystems for the benefit of present and future generations. We must all ensure justice and fairness around the world. Every nation and government must actively contribute to the global good with their respective capabilities and responsibilities.

Mr. President,
Mongolia will always commit our humble share to the global wellbeing:
- We, Mongols, are eager to contribute. Our blue helmets proudly serve, along with fellow UN peacekeepers, to maintain international order and security. Mongolia has become one of the 20 largest peacekeeping contributors in the world. So far, 14,000 Mongolian peacekeepers have served on active duty in global hotspots. This is a significant number if you compare it with the size of our population.
- We are enthusiastic to share our experiences of transition, in our quest for freedom, justice and development. When Mongolian citizens share and actively collaborate with countries in our region and beyond, we make our own success more durable.
- We care deeply about global stability. Mongols believe we must preserve our planet by eliminating nuclear weapons across the world. For 23 years, our country has pursued nuclear-weapon-free status. Any nation seeking to build nuclear power must not endanger the peace and security of their independent neighbors. We believe the solution to these challenges is engagement, rather than isolation.
- We believe that strengthening multilateral collaboration and mutual trust among countries is vital. In Asia. Mongolia is a non-aligned nation, an “honest broker” that promotes peace and security. We launched a regional initiative similar to the Helsinki dialogue – called the “Ulaanbaatar Dialogue on NEA Security”. Within this security initiative, Mongolia hosted and plans to undertake multilateral meetings, conferences, and symposia to examine peace and security issues.
- We also put forward a common platform called “The Forum of Asia”. A compelling need exists to establish a solid and inclusive platform for comprehensive dialogue involving all Asian states. “The Forum of Asia” should promote equal representation of interests of all sovereign nations in Asia, small or big. All nations would oblige to each other, rather than wrestle one-on-one in the global arena. It should guarantee each member state its independence, integrity, and right to development. We invite all interested parties to be active part of this cause.
- Our country also successfully chaired for two years the world’s most reputable democracy movement – Community of Democracies. Currently, Mongolia chairs the Freedom Online Coalition The first Asian country to lead this important community, we promote universal internet access. We support a comprehensive convention on internet freedom to be agreed to by all UN Members. I appeal to everyone to work collectively to advance the great digital revolution to will bring more prosperity to humanity.
- Mongolia has pursued a peaceful, open, multi-pillar foreign policy. This stance enabled us to declare Mongolia in a state of permanent neutrality. Our national laws and international treaties to which Mongolia is signatory are consistent with neutrality principles. Therefore, I kindly ask your sympathy and support for Mongolia’s peaceful, open, neutral, and active foreign policy efforts. I am convinced that Mongolia’s status of permanent neutrality will contribute to the strengthening of peace, security and development in our region and the world at large.
- Recently, Mongolia hosted the Asia–Pacific Human Rights Conference. Also, for the first time in our country, the Autumn Meeting of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly was convened. The human rights experts and European parliamentarians had fruitful, lively discussions and exchanges of views. The conference was also a splendid opportunity for them to comprehend first-handed our achievements in protecting and advancing human rights, in exercising the rule of law, and in running a pluralistic, open society.
- We are honoured to host many events in the coming months and year in our capital city. Most important, the 11th ASEM Summit will be held in the summer of 2016. Leaders of 53 countries of Asia and Europe will meet in Mongolia on the 20th historical jubilee of the founding of ASEM. I earnestly look forward to welcoming them.
- Mongolia will further consolidate and strengthen our peace initiatives and role as mediator. Our doors are always open for dialogue and engagement. We will always say “Very Welcome” to cooperate in the spirit of freedom, justice and prosperity. We are ready to share the lessons we learned and to listen to and learn from the lessons of other nations.
- I wish to stress that Mongolia is running for the first time for a membership on the UN Human Rights Council. We believe the United Nations Human Rights Council is a crucial body for the protection and promotion of human rights worldwide. It is a platform for open discussions on human rights issues that positively impact national and international policies. Mongolia reaffirms our full commitment to the promotion of human rights and willingness to share our experience transitioning to democracy, fighting against corruption, abolishing the death penalty, and ensuring genuine human rights. I kindly ask every member state to extend your valuable support to Mongolia’s candidacy to the UN’s Human Rights Council, at elections in October.

Mr. President, Esteemed leaders,
We, the United Nations members, need to mobilize the full potential of humanity to achieve the primary purpose of the creation of the UN, namely:
- the promotion of peace,
- respect for human rights,
- and inclusive economic and social development.
I believe that in the XXI century, the UN will remain at the heart of our common humanity.
Its mission will be defined by a new, more profound awareness of the sanctity and dignity of every human life, regardless of race, gender or religion.
Still, there are plenty of cases of cruel violation of human dignity and rights. One thing is certain - every nation state should always strive for good governance, strict rule of law and a sound human rights policy.
I reiterate the appeals of all speakers to this esteemed assembly that we must vow to exercise clear, decisive leadership in effectively tackling tough challenges and in fulfilling the UN’s core missions.
We have many opportunities that can benefit the world.
We are the first ones in history who have the potential, technology, and resources to resolve the world’s problems.
When I observe a giant military exhibit, I wonder: “What a huge amount of money and human ingenuity and time are being spent on war machines and weapons of mass destruction”. With a fraction of the money and technology we spend for the “masculine war show,” we could solve many of today’s troubling issues.
We also have a smart, tech-savvy, energetic young generation who will soon shoulder our tough challenges with their innovative, dynamic and shrewd solutions. They give us hope and strengthen our confidence.

Mr. President, Esteemed delegates,
I would like to reiterate that the UN’s solemn purpose has always been to enhance global peace, protect fellow human beings and contribute to the global wellbeing.
We all know there are sound critiques of the UN. If our United Nations is to survive in the new reality, we must embrace substantive change. We need reforms to build a just common home. If we delay action, change will become more painful and challenging.
The UN is still our most representative and important global body.
Its foundation is the preservation of the rights and interests of all nations - big or small. To have a voice, to have a vote, and to be part of a common human home.
More pertinent than ever, the UN is a common home where nations can meet and create solutions to solve the challenges of the world. .
If the 70 years since the United Nations was founded were the best 70 years ever, as I believe, let us make the next 70 years even better.

Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen,
We humans are at our best when we face challenges – when we exercise collective bravery, spirit and leadership.
With the Sustainable Development Goals, we all became “developing” countries, because we all have a stake in our plan’s success.
There is no future without peace.
There is no planet without sustainability.
There is no humanity without justice.
Let us strive for victory.
Let us all be champions.
Let us raise all our flags at the FINISH line.
And let us proudly present them to our beautiful planet’s next generation.
Thank you for your attention.