'Mutual Respect. Dialogue and Cooperation. Ensuring All Human Rights, for All'

Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son delivered the message at the High-level Segment of the 49th Regular Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland on March 2.

In the speech, he said that the world is at a crucial juncture. The COVID-19 pandemic is draining resources, disrupting economies, deepening existing divides and inequalities, effectively wiping out years of development progress. For the first time in decades, extreme poverty is, once again, on the rise.

Meanwhile, violence and armed conflicts continue to breakout and rage on in many areas, threatening peace, stability and development, undermining prospect of a robust, sustainable recovery of the world economy, he stated.

"All this is on top of the existential threat of climate change and environmental degradation, which effects all nations and all peoples", he noted.

However, Son stressed that never before, humanity holds so much power, enabled by advancement in technology and innovation, to influence and determine the characters of the world we live in.

According to him, today’s technologies, if we so choose, can foster connections and linkages to bring peoples and nations closer together, and can enhance dialogue, understanding and cooperation to ensure peace, stability, prosperity and to address the global challenges. We can choose to shift towards a green, circular, digital economy which empower people, improve livelihoods and protect the environment.

"This opportunity urges us to build forward better, to ensure everyone is equal in the pursuit of happiness, freedom and sustainable development, and that no one is left behind," he said.

The Vietnamese diplomat affirmed that since the nation’s independence in 1945, Viet Nam has been taking on an unwavering commitment to delivering to our people the very values that the UN is striving for.

People are at the heart of Vietnam’s development strategy. They are both the chief beneficiary and the principal driver of the country’s development process.

"We seek to balance GDP growth with cultural and social progress, environmental protection and climate resilience. This people-centric and holistic approach has enabled Vietnam to effectively tackle challenges, especially COVID-19 pandemic".

Viet Nam is now among countries with the highest vaccination coverage and is preparing for a green and inclusive post pandemic recovery, he stressed.

Minister Son said it was at this High Level Segment last year that Viet Nam formally presented its candidature for membership of the Human Rights Council for the term 2023-2025.

"We pledge to make positive contributions to the work of the Council in the spirit of “Mutual Respect. Dialogue and Cooperation. Ensuring All Human Rights, for All”.

Viet Nam stands ready to work closely with other member states and stakeholders to uphold the principles of the UN Charter and international law, and strengthen the efficiency and effectiveness of the Human Rights Council through dialogue, cooperation and mutual respect.

"We will promote the enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms in a comprehensive and holistic manner, in all civil, political, economic, social, cultural and developmental aspects".

Viet Nam's efforts will focus in particular on the protection of vulnerable groups and combating violence and discrimination against them; the promotion of gender equality, especially for women and girls in the era of digital transformation; and the protection and promotion of human rights in addressing global issues, especially climate change.

Viet Nam will work to promote the right to health, particularly in the unpredictable context of COVID-19 and other communicable diseases; the right to decent work in joint efforts to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and the right to quality education based on equality of opportunity and universal access.

The session was attended by many high-ranking world leaders with more than 140 heads of state, prime ministers and ministers of countries, the President of the UN General Assembly, the UN Secretary-General, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and leaders of international and regional organisations and non-governmental organisations based in Geneva.

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(Source: VNA)