Statement by H.E. Jörundur Valtýsson
Permanent Representative of Iceland to the United Nations
I have the honour, on behalf of Iceland, as current Chair of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, and Ireland as the previous Chair, to introduce draft resolution A/77/L.65 entitled “Cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe”. I would like to thank Member States who have joined Iceland and Ireland as co-sponsors.
The cooperation between the United Nations and the Council of Europe is characterized by long tradition and shared vision of the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, democracy and rule of law.
First submitted to the 55th Session of the General Assembly in the year 2000, this biannual resolution touches on numerous important issues. Consultations, as customary, began in Strasbourg amongst Council of Europe members during the Irish Presidency last spring. The zero draft was agreed upon last November, outlining the issues of most importance to the Council of Europe and its members, before being introduced to the wider UN membership here in New York.
As co-facilitators, Iceland and Ireland strived to conduct inclusive negotiations through several rounds of informal consultations, in addition to bilateral and smaller group discussions. Based on the previously agreed language from resolution A/75/264, adopted by consensus two years ago, compromises were reached on several issues in order to submit a draft that the vast majority of members could accept. This meant that some key elements from the zero draft, agreed upon by the Council of Europe membership, were omitted from the text.
Early on, in the informal consultations, it became clear that there was no ground for consensus on preambular paragraph 9. The war that followed the full-scale invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation fourteen months ago has had devastating impact on Ukraine, the region and every corner of the world. No country has escaped the far-reaching consequences of this unprovoked and unjust invasion.
The draft resolution before us recognizes these unprecedented challenges in the context of regional cooperation, international law and multilateralism. PP9 calls for strengthened cooperation between the UN and the Council of Europe, and I quote “notably in order to promptly restore and maintain peace and security based on respect of sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of any State”. End of quote.
It is regrettable that we will have to vote on this draft resolution here today. I call on all Member States to support the text as drafted, and vote in favour.
I thank you.