Ardern calls for UN reform and calls Russia an illegal invader


The Prime Minister also wants the abolition of the veto system

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addressing the United Nations General Assembly in New York on September 23, 2022 (UN Photo by Cia Pak)

Venkat Raman
Auckland, September 24, 2022

Prime Minister Jacinda Arden called for reorienting the UN and making it more responsive to changing geopolitics and stressed the need for consistent action.

She also called for the abolition of the veto system

Institutions like the UN are the ballast the world needs, but it is ballast that needs modernization, suited to the stormy waters we all face, she said.

She said that as a responsible global citizen, New Zealand has always championed the cause of a just world and the need for the peaceful resolution of disputes between nations.

Ms Ardern launched a direct attack on the UN Security Council, saying that in March 2022 (when Russia invaded Ukraine), when the world needed decisive action from the Council UN security, it took no action.

“He did not fulfill his mandate because of a permanent member who wanted to abuse his privileged position. It was wrong. We will not abandon the ability of our multilateral institutions to stand up against this illegal war or to address the many challenges we face,” she said, addressing the United Nations General Assembly during the its annual gathering in New York, USA on Friday, September 23, 2022.

Russia vs Ukraine

Citing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the resulting crisis in the world, calling Russia’s war illegal and immoral, Ms Ardern said the Russian invasion is a direct attack on the Charter of the United Nations and the rules-based international system and all that this community should stand for. .

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s suggestion that he could at any time deploy other weapons at his disposal reveals the false narrative on which the country based its invasion and asked: “What country that claims to be a liberator is threatening to annihilate the civilians they claim to liberate?

Stating the crime was ‘based on a lie’, Ms Ardern acknowledged the people of Ukraine who lost loved ones, their sense of peace and security and their livelihoods.

“They need us,” she said.

“What if it was us?” Our ability to answer this question with the certainty that we have the tools as a global community to act quickly and collectively has been severely compromised. We were among the founding members of the United Nations when the governments of the day recognized that the perils of war would only be averted through a greater sense of shared responsibility. The basis on which this institution was formed remains as relevant today as it was then. But without reform, we risk being irrelevant,” she said.

Ms Ardern said that whether it is climate, trade, the health crisis or finding peaceful solutions to war and conflict, New Zealand has always believed in multilateral tools,” a- she declared.

Abolition of the right of veto

“That’s why New Zealand was delighted to champion the Veto Initiative. Not only does it provide an opportunity to review the actions of the permanent member who vetoed it, but the veto initiative also gives the “all UN members have a voice where the Security Council has been unable to act. But we continue to demand more than that,” she said.

Ms Ardern said the right of veto should be abolished for the UN to retain its relevance and ensure it is truly the voice of all the countries it represents. She also called on the permanent members to exercise their responsibility for the benefit of international peace and security, rather than in pursuit of their national interest.

She said New Zealand continues to fight “other battles” as a nation, one of which is its demand for a global response to the use of nuclear weapons.

“Our history of championing not only non-proliferation but also the prohibition of nuclear weapons is based on what we have witnessed, but also on what we have experienced. We are both a Pacific and an inland nation. It is in our region that these weapons of war have been tested. These tests have left a mark on the people, lands and waters of our home. The only way to assure our people that they will be safe from the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons is if they don’t exist,” Ms Ardern said.

Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty

She urged all countries convinced of the dangers facing the world today to join the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).

Ms Ardern said some would call such a position naïve and some would believe we are safer thanks to nuclear weapons.

“In New Zealand, we have never accepted the wisdom of mutually assured destruction. It takes a country to believe that its cause is nobler, its power stronger and its people more willing to be sacrificed. None of them We can’t stand on this platform and turn a blind eye to the fact that there are already leaders among us who believe this. Nuclear weapons don’t make us any safer. There will be those who will agree but who will think it’s just too hard to get rid of nuclear weapons at this point,” she said.

Ms Ardern criticized Russia, saying progress on the NPT had recently been blocked by Moscow, which “represented a step backwards from the efforts of almost every country in the world to make even limited progress on disarmament. and nuclear non-proliferation”.

“None of this will stop New Zealand’s advocacy. We will remain a strong and passionate advocate of efforts to combat old weapons, but also new weapons. The face of warfare has changed and with that the weapons used have also changed. The tools used to contest the statehood of others are hidden and more complex. Traditional fighting, espionage and the threat of nuclear weapons are now accompanied by cyberattacks, prolific disinformation and the manipulation of entire communities and societies,” Ms Ardern said.


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