Statement by President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev at the High-Level Meeting to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations
Ladies and gentlemen,
Today we commemorate the historic decision taken in June 1945 to create a totally new organization as an outcome of the most devastating World War in the history of mankind.
The United Nations as Dag Hammarskjöld famously underlined “was not created to bring us to heaven, but to save us from hell”.
Though conceived primarily as a system for collective security, the UN has in fact consolidated nations around much broader common aspirations and principles. The result has been an era of really active and broad international cooperation.
However, the path has not been easy. 75 years were overshadowed by missed opportunities to find a common ground in advancing our shared goals and values, to lessen suffering in the world.
But one learns from both failure and success. The history of the United Nations has been a period of intense collective efforts and rich learning: from decolonization to development, from child protection to climate change, from health to human rights, from peacekeeping to peacemaking.
Over the last three decades, Kazakhstan has participated in endeavours of every major UN body – including the Security Council – in pursuit of a range of priorities including conflict resolution, non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament, combatting terrorism, interfaith and interethnic dialogue, as well as promoting the interests of Land Locked Developing Countries.
When we look around us today, many new challenges – and some old recurring ones – threaten to drag us back in time.
Multilateralism now faces greater risk than at any point since the end of the Cold War.
COVID-19 has proven surprisingly difficult to be overcome. A second arms race looms. Our strategic development goals are suffering setbacks.
Some argue that the ideals enshrined in the UN Charter are no longer realistic.
As President of my country and former senior manager of the UN I strongly disagree.
More than ever,
We must give rein to the horse of our hopes, not pull back out of fear.
We must galvanize efforts in pursuit of those shared ideals, not abandon them.
We must continue to build a rules-based community, not return to lawlessness.
This will not be easy. The next decade is crucial as we strive to implement the 2030 Agenda and simultaneously meet the crises of our time.
This formidable goal demands a common endeavour and responsibility.
We commend strong leadership by Secretary-General António Guterres, and support his ongoing work to boost effectiveness, transparency and accountability of the UN.
Kazakhstan adds its voice in a clear statement of commitment to the UN mission and Charter, and to the shared aspiration of building a more peaceful, just and prosperous world.
I am convinced that the United Nations as a single universal and most representative international organization is indeed indispensable.