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General Assembly - 56th Session (2001-2002)

Plenary First Committee Second Committee Third Committee Fourth Committee Fifth Committee Sixth Committee PLENARY Statement by H.E. Mr. Hynek Kmonicek, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United


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Sixth Committee


  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Hynek Kmonicek, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, at the Open-Ended Working Group on the Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Other Matters related to the Security Council
    New York, 11 March 2002

  • Statement by Mr. Jan Kara, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on Agenda Item 29, Follow-up to the Outcome of the Millennium Summit
    New York, 19 November 2001

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Jan Kavan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic at the Fifty-Sixth Session of the United Nations General Assembly, General Debate
    New York, 13 November 2001

  • Statement by Mr. Jan Kara, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on Agenda Item 25, United Nations Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations
    New York, 9 November 2001

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Hynek Kmonicek, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on Agenda Item 49: Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Related Matters
    New York, 31 October 2001

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Hynek Kmonicek, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on Agenda Item "Report of the International Atomic Energy Agency", 56th Session of the United Nations General Assembly
    New York, 22 October 2001

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Vladimir Galuska, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, General Assembly Debate on Terrorism
    New York, 3 October 2001

  • Statement by H.E. Mr. Vladimir Galuska, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the "High-level dialog on strengthening international economic cooperation for development through partnership"
    New York, 21 September 2001

  • Statement of H.E. Mr. Vladimir Galuska, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, Chairman of the Group of Eastern European States at the opening of the 56th Session of the General Assembly
    New York, 12 September 2001

Statement by H.E. Mr. Hynek Kmonicek, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, at the Open-Ended Working Group on the Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Other Matters related to the Security Council

Mr. President,

We are entering the ninth year of deliberations on Security Council enlargement and reform in this working group and we are now well aware that this is a long-distance run, our major tools being just patience and realism. Indeed, we saw little progress over our previous sessions, in particular when cluster I issues were in question. We never got significantly beyond the bottom line everyone agrees on: that the Security Council in its size, composition and methods should be changed to reflect the realities of the contemporary World.

However, our work was not fruitless and meaningless, as it helped to map the global political landscape and to accumulate a wealth of reform ideas - ideas which will have to be taken into account in any future reform efforts. But in the course of years, it became more evident that the reform potential of the working group has clear limits. Often, the focus was on procedural intricacies rather than on substantive issues, and the challenge was increasingly how to re-group, re-organize (or let me say "re-cycle") existing ideas in hope that it might lead us forward. Not surprisingly, this did not work very well.

We did not get any further with the powerful message from our heads of states in the Millennium Declaration, and also the strong efforts of our previous President, Mr. Holkeri, made just little difference. We could have linked some expectations with the situation after the 9/11 attack, when we saw a new level of unity among Member States and growing prestige of the Council. But again, if there were any expactations, they are yet to be met.

Mr. President,

Despite the rather grim assessment above, we are convinced we have to continue and perhaps intensify our efforts. When pondering our future work, let me put stress on three following areas which we might focus on more deeply:

(1) To secure more interaction between the Working Group and the Council itself. Last year, the debate with the Council representatives became a higlight of our work and we praise you and the Bureau for the decision to repeat such an excercise at early stage of this year's deliberations.

(2) Our reform efforts, in particular in cluster II, may benefit from, and be enhanced by discussions in plenary of the GA, as shown by the recent case of the decision to modify the annual reports of the Security Council to the General Assembly "having taken into account the views expressed during the debate on agenda item 11 (Report of the Security Council)".

(3) Speaking of other fora than this group, we should not lose sight of the message of Mr. Holkeri from his "farewell" statement on September 10, 2001, including the idea of moving our discussion to a higher political level. We should try to follow, and to explore the path indicated by Mr. Holkeri.

Thank you, Mr. President.

Statement by Mr. Jan Kara, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on Agenda Item 29, Follow-up to the Outcome of the Millennium Summit

Mr. President,

The Czech Republic aligned itself with the EU statement presented by the distinguished representative of Belgium earlier today and it allows me to confine myself to just a few following remarks.

Mr. President,

The Millennium Summit was an important milestone for the United Nations. It set up or re-framed its agenda for the coming years and mobilised political support for its implementation. During the last week's general debate, vast majority of delegations - including a number of Heads of State - made references to the outcomes of the Millennium Summit and to the process of implementation of goals enshrined in the Millennium Declaration. The support from more than 14 months ago seems to be still in place - despite the almost empty GA hall this morning which did not indicate that we are about to discuss one of the crucial and strategic issues on our list.

We all know that the goals and targets of the Summit were not invented by the Summit itself - they were taken from various global fora. In our view, the main added value of the Summit was consolidating our goals and targets into one package, thus securing more synergy in their pursuit. Is this happening? It may be too early to say. But let me quote Mr. Harri Holkeri, the President of the previous GA session and the one to be praised for taking a firm lead in the Millennium Summit follow-up activities. In his "farewell" statement he pointed out that "the Member States and the respective entities of the Secretariat seem to be unable to break the habit of viewing and considering different issues in isolation". Then, coordination seems to be one of those areas where we need to further strengthen our efforts. In this regard, a major test before us are the two conferences in the year 2002 - Financing for Development and World Summit for Sustainable Development.

Mr. Holkeri delivered his statement on September 10, 2001. The following day we found ourselves in a different world, facing new ominous threads. The United Nations response to the terrorist attack on the United States of America has been prompt and resolute, reconfirming its pivotal role in handling global affairs. Terrorism became overnight an overriding focus of our activities, and all Member States have stood unprecedently united in effort to combat this evil. We have spontaneously adopted - to use the words of the distinguished State Secretary Jack Straw of the United Kingdom - "agenda of the 11th September". The scope of change has been substantial: There was not much on terrorism in the excellent report "We the People..." prepared by the Secretary General for the Millennium Summit, and our commitment "to take concrete action against international terrorism" from the Millennium Declaration was just one among many others. Indeed, the issue of terrorism, mainly a topic of legal experts in the 6th Committee, did not loom very large by then and the last year's report of the Secretary General on the work of the Organization did not touch upon it at all.

The core challenge of today, Mr. President, is to combine our immediate priority - to combat terrorism - with our long term strategies and goals endorsed by the Millennium Summit. We need to strike a balance between the "agendas of the 10th and 11th September". And even more importantly, to secure a symmetry of commitment to both tasks. We believe that the implementation of the long term strategy guided by the Millennium Declaration can strongly benefit from the renewed unity and spirit of multilateralism. We hope that the same amount of determination with which we forge the anti-terrorist alliance will find its way into cooperation in other areas like conflict prevention, poverty eradication, peace-building, de-mining, promoting democracy and human rights, or protecting the environment. If only because all these areas are interrelated and, when neglected, they can feed the roots of terrorism.

Mr. President,

In his another high-quality document, the "Road map towards the implementation of the United Nations Millennium Declaration", the Secretary General rightly stresses that "what is needed is to demonstrate political will to carry out commitment already given and to implement strategies already worked out". Now we know that such a political will can be generated. Let us further explore this potential vis-a-vis the goals of the Millennium Summit.

Thank you, Mr. President.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Jan Kavan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic at the Fifty-Sixth Session of the United Nations General Assembly, General Debate

Mr. President,

Let me congratulate you on your election as President of the 56th session of the UN General Assembly and wish you every success as you carry out this important post. At the same time I am using this opportunity to give my most sincere congratulations to the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and the whole United Nations at the occasion of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize award and to express my gratitude for the determination to defend the ideas of tolerance and mutual respect among nations.

Colleagues and Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Allow me to extend my and my country´s deepest sympathy to all those who lost their loved ones in the horrible terrorist attack of the September 11th. We are deeply moved by the unspeakable tragedy and share with the American people and all the affected their grief.

We perceive the horrifying attack as an attack against the entire civilized international community, against the principles of freedom, democracy and peace, the principles upon which our Organization stands. In the aftermath of the attacks of September 11, 2001 the concepts of security, peace, and solidarity are acquiring a new and distinct meaning.

We recognize the growing interdependency of individual actors on the international scene. The dangers of new threats and risks, which confront our civilization, come to the forefront. To conquer them, we must not only move energetically against the perpetrators, but also concentrate on the causes which propel them.

At the same time, we are witnessing a significant process leading to creation of new relationships in the international community. The fact, that we were able to create such a wide anti-terrorist coalition so swiftly, is encouraging. It is imperative to strengthen this coalition and enable it not only to fight effectively against terrorism, but also to contribute to solving other pressing problems, especially those whose solutions will strengthen the struggle against terrorism by reducing tensions and promoting justice and stability. The current unusually wide international coalition against terrorism presents a unique opportunity which we should seize upon. We should do our utmost to make it effective and operational. We should do our utmost not to let it collapse for reasons which would not stand up to the inevitable future scrutiny by our sons and daughters. We should do our utmost to avoid the trap of enabling the struggle against terrorism, the struggle for peace, justice and stability and coexistence to be replaced by a clash of civilizations, by the war Usama ben Ladin is calling for, by a war against Islam.

The international community has at its disposal a great potential to address even the most complex problems and crises. It must now reach an agreement on how to approach them and which tools it will employ to address them.

International organizations, and the UN specifically, play an irreplacable role in this process.

The Czech Republic is determined to contribute to the search for effective ways to meet the most pressing challenges of today and to support the international response against terrorism and the actions undertaken thus far, especially if the military operation will continue to be targeted as accurately as possible against military targets. We view these actions as legitimate and in accordance with the United Nations Charter, as well as the UN Security Council resolution 1368 (2001). Today, more than ever, we feel our duty and obligation to preserve and cherish the uniqueness as well as open and universal character of the United Nations and push more decisively for strengthening of the role we have entrusted upon it.

Dear Colleagues,

When we approach these most pressing challenges, we must be pro-active. For its part, the Czech Republic is determined to carry its share. The Czech Republic has submitted its candidacy for the presidency of the 57th General Assembly of the United Nations. We hold this highly demanding and prestigious position in great respect, and we are determined to actively participate in the realization of the demanding tasks ahead of us in the most responsible manner. We are prepared to be attentive to your voices and concerns and serve the entire membership. We would obviously wish to help with the implementation of the Millenium Declaration, including the eradication of extreme poverty and the need to integrate human rights into every aspect of our work as we were so eloquently reminded by Secretary General Kofi Annan. We need to inch forward the necessary reform of the UN system, strengthen the role of the UN General Assembly, help to challenge the marginalisation of important continents such as Africa and so on but also to help the UN play an effective role in the struggle against international terrorism.

It is clear that accomplishing the most immediate objective of finding and bringing to justice the perpetrators of the attacks on the United States is most urgent and topical. However, other phases can be embarked upon at the same time. I agree with the President of Pakistan General Pervez Musharraf who said at this Assembly that a three-pronged strategy is needed, ie going after the main culprits, the individual terrorists, secondly to move decisively against the terrorist organizations and thirdly, and in my opinion, very importantly, to address unsolved disputes around the world in a helpful and just manner. As I listened carefully to speeches delivered here over the last few days by many leading politicians of the world I was pleased that my conviction got confirmed that not only the Czech Republic, not only the European Union but many other countries argue that the fight against terrorism should combine the necessary military operations with, above all, decisive attempts to eradicate the root causes of terrorism. It is therefore necessary to pay far greater attention to conflicts which provide fertile soil for terrorism because if conflicts are unsolved for decades they give rise to feelings of frustration, despair, powerlessness or , as the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Seed Mohammad Chatham put it, to alienation, extremism and lawlessness. Political solutions of conflicts, many of which are essentially political conflicts, will reduce tensions, promote peace and fairness but especially it will take the wind off the sails of those who put forward the absurd myth that terrorist actions can bring about anything other than loss of lives of innocent people and exacerbation of problems and conflicts.

In our fight against terrorism we need to look for comprehensive solutions and to this end employ all available tools to identify, isolate and destroy the terrorist networks and to combat terrorism as a whole. Our anti-terrorist strive must equally concentrate on combating international organized crime, people smuggling, and drug and arms trafficking. On the financial front, it is obviously necessary to cut off terrorists from their resources. A determined focus on preventing money laundering is a crucial aspect of this effort.

A long-term and extensive development assistance aimed at alleviating the most pressing problems of the developing world should be an integral part of these efforts by the international community.

The Czech Republic sees upholding of the unity and operational readiness of the international coalition combating terrorism as the most imperative task of the day. We, the international community, should not loose this unique opportunity and take decisive actions. The fight against terrorism is a long-term mission and will have an impact on all aspects of our lives. On the national level, the Czech Republic is preparing a plan for combating terrorism, which is inspired by the Action Plan of the EU.

In the recent weeks, the UN has shown its renewed resolve to combat international terrorism. We commend the Security Council for the swift action and we support the adoption of the Security Council Resolutions 1368 and 1373 to the threats to international peace and security caused by the terrorist acts. The Czech Republic is taking all necessary steps towards full implementation of the provisions of the Resolution 1373 and we fully support the actions of the relevant Counter-Terrorism Committee (CAC).

My belief in the need of political and diplomatic moves does not in any way suggests that one should negotiate with the terrorists. Just the contrary, terrorists have to be defeated and brought to justice, there can be no negotiations with the terrorists. The evil of terrorism must be eradicated. The fight against terrorism has a higher priority than ever before and nobody can stay neutral in this fight. The Czech Republic is proud that it was able to offer to the efforts led by the United States both military and humanitarian help. The Czech Republic is proud that some of this help was accepted and thus that some of our best soldiers can actively contribute to these joint endeavors.

Mr. President,

As I have said conflicts can be a breeding ground of terrorism. Terrorism fully exploits unsolved conflicts and profits from their expansion. Therefore our intensified fight against terrorism points unequivocally to the need for the international community to pay a far greater attention to conflict solution in various regions.

The UN must continue its major role in maintaining peace and security throughout the world by applying an integrated approach of conflict prevention, peacekeeping operations and post-conflict reconstruction. Recognition of roots of conflicts and education towards tolerance must be incorporated into our preventive strategies. We fully support the implementation of comprehensive overhaul of the peacekeeping operations, as proposed in the Brahimi Report and other recent reports focusing on this issue.The recent liberation of Mazar-i-Sharif in northern Afghanistan by the Northern Alliance provides far greater possibilities to supply Afghan people with the humanitarian aid which they so badly need. This must remain in the forefront of our endeavors. We should do our utmost to alleviate the suffering of the innocent Afghan people.

There is an extremely important role for the UN to play in so desperately needed consolidation of the post-Taliban Afghan state. We should fully support the current efforts of the UN and especially of the Ambassador Brahimi. It is clear that Afghanistan needs a stable broad-based government which will reflect the ethnic diversity of the country. And I agree with Foreign Secretary Jack Straw that the one institution in the world which can deliver this better future is the United Nations.

The greatest tensions today undoubtedly prevail in the Middle East. It is regretful that a lot of the progress achieved over the last few years seems to have been squandered. But the uphill struggle which faces us is not a reason for doing nothing and let things get worse which means that more people would suffer and die. The Czech Republic is a traditional and active supporter of the peace process in the Middle East. We cannot reconcile ourselves with the current setbacks, the political violence must be halted, diplomatic initiatives aimed at bringing the parties back to negotiating table have to be fully supported. The Czech Republic fully supports the right of the Palestinians to their own viable and independent state. Nevertheless its final shape should be the result of bilateral Palestinian-Israeli negotiations with the full backing of the international community.

The international community has been encouraged by the change in political leadership in the Balkans which offers a new opportunity to secure a genuine peace and economic reconstruction. The upcoming local parliamentary elections in Kosovo will be an important moment in the stabilization process. I would like to use this opportunity to pay tribute to the Secretary General and his Special Representative in Kosovo Hans Haekkerup for their work in the region. Our admiration also goes to UNMIK and KFOR.

In Africa, despite some progress, not just poverty or AIDS, but also armed conflict remains a major challenge to the United Nations and the entire international community. Although the destiny of the continent lies in the hands of the Africans, the international community should strengthen its efforts to assist Africa in its strife to achieve durable peace and especially to acquire higher levels of development.

Mr. President,

The strife to reduce poverty has to stand in the forefront of our joint endeavours. Providing debt relief and market access are crucial elements of economic development of the developing countries. The UN must continue with its activities to promote sustainable development and continue its programmes aimed at providing basic health care and education, fighting HIV/AIDS pandemic and averting the devastation of the environment. A gender perspective should be included in all these efforts.

The gap between the rich and poor countries continues to grow and is further exacerbated by the imbalance in the distribution of the globalization benefits. The digital divide is just an additional symptom of the growing disparity between the developed and developing countries. The UN, in cooperation with national governments, the Bretton-Woods institutions, the World Trade Organization, private sector, non-governmental sphere and civil society, must be prepared to address the challenges of globalization. In short, we should respond to the globalization of capital by the globalization of solidarity and social justice.

Mr. President,

We need to create a functioning international legal environment in order to prosecute crimes against humanity. The Czech Republic fully supports the entry into force of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, an institution that will be a great asset for the maintenance of international law.

The protection of human rights will continue to shape the fate of human society. Human rights are universal and indivisible, and it is in the interest of the UN member states to support their organization in its strenuous effort to secure the protection of human rights in today=s globally interconnected world. We must not remain indifferent to manifestations of racism, xenofobia, religious or political persecution, discrimination of minorities, violence against women or the violation of the rights of the child, regardless of where they take place. In this regard, allow me to mention the conference in World Conference in South African Durban. However difficult the negotiations have shown to be, they pointed to the fact that extreme intolerance and terrorism are interlinked.

Mr. President,

The implementation of the UN reform is imperative to make the work of our organization more effective. As I have said at the beginning of my speech, as a candidate for the Presidency of the 57th UN General Assembly I fully support the reaffirmation of the central role of the General Assembly, the revitalisation of its work, and the improvement of the procedural methods. Equally, the reform of the Security Council, including its enlargement in categories of both permanent and non-permanent members and limiting of the veto, will enhance the authority of this body. Reevaluation of the application of sanctions mechanism must play an important part of the Council´s work.

The UN, more than any other international forum, is where people of all the cultures and religions meet. We come here from various parts of our planet to solve the problems of today´s world. Despite our different backgrounds, we gather here to approach these problems bound by universal human values that unite us. The highest of them all is the value of human life. We have been tragically reminded that we need to promote the culture of peace and build environment in which the principles of these universally shared values take roots. Now, more than ever, we must strive to overcome our differences and be guided by our common interests. Let us unite our efforts and ensure that our work during this session of the General Assembly contributes to a better, safer and more just world.

Thank you for your attention.

Statement by Mr. Jan Kara, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on Agenda Item 25, United Nations Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations

Mr. President,

while we may continue to seek more clarity of the notion of dialogue among civilizations as such, and while we may choose to speak of only one civilization embracing all the astonishing diversity of humankind, there is little doubt about substance and relevance of our current discussion. Indeed, the dialogue between representatives of various cultures, ethnic groups, religions or societal models in our globalized, interconnected and interdependent world seems to be more important with every new challenge we face. Therefore, my delegation wishes to express its deep appreciation to the Islamic Republic of Iran and all those who helped to start this process, as well as to the UN Secretary General and his personal representative Mr. Giandomenico Picco for their invaluable contributions, resulting, among others, in the recently published enlightening book Crossing the Divide. Our special thanks also go to UNESCO.

Mr. President,

Number of speakers over last two days contradicted dialogue and terrorism, futher pointing out that the dividing lines are to be sought not between cultures and religions, but between the civilized and the barbaric. My delegation fully endorses such a view. And we are also, with others, convinced of the power of a dialogue - through emphasizing common values - to help to prevent conflicts and problems of this world.

Since the Czech Republic aligned itself with the statement presented this morning on behalf of the EU by the distinguished representative of Belgium, let me, Mr. President, confine myself to just a few remarks concerning my country=s specific input into the dialogue. I refer to the series of conferences Forum 2000, organized every year since 1997 in Prague under the auspices of Mr. Václav Havel, the President of the Czech Republic, and bringing together eminent personalities with different cultural, religious or ethnic backgrounds with the aim of exchanging views, sharing values and looking for both visionary and practical solutions to problems of contemporary World. The outcome of the last of these conferences, a Prague Declaration of October 17, 2001, has been made available to all delegations as document A/56/498. I am sure that number of areas and activities covered by the Declaration and the Forum 2000 process are in perfect harmony with respective elements of the proposed Global agenda for dialogue among civilizations and its Programme of action. We therefor fully support and cosponsor the draft resolution we are about to adopt.

Mr. President,

it is very encouraging to see the growing list of activities within the frame of our today=s agenda item - be it at global, regional, national or intra-national levels. Let us all hope that the Global agenda will lay down a solid foundation for continuing and enhancement of our Dialogue.

Thank you, Mr. President.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Hynek Kmonicek, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on Agenda Item 49: Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Related Matters

Mr. President,

The distinguished representative of Belgium presented yesterday the joint position of G-10 on issues related to enlargement and reform of the Security Council, and he spoke also on behalf of my delegation. This allows me to be very short.

Mr. President,

The response to the terrorist attack by international community was immediate and firm, and the members of the UN were in that response more unified than ever before. The prestige of the Council in this historic moment grew, but so grew its responsibility and - in a way - the scope of its action. Indeed, our very understanding of security has been modified. The overall message is clear: As international security vis-a-vis globalized crime calls for broader coalitions, for collective action by as many states as possible, the need of a truly representative Council becomes more urgent. The Council should be enlarged and its working methods should be improved.

The Czech Republic has been - together with many other countries - pushing the reform agenda through the years of protracted debates in the Open-ended Working Group or in this Plenary. We are of the opinion that there exist enough reform proposals to choose from. Our own choice is what we feel as a realistic mainstream of the reform:

- We believe that the Security Council should be enlarged in both categories, preferably with 5 additional permanent seats and 4 - 5 additional non-permanent seats, including one for Eastern Europe. We respect the option of rotating permanent seats for specific regions, but no country or region should be forced into such a scheme.

- We continue to favor some reduction of areas where the veto can be applied, possibly through individual commitments by permanent members and other steps which do not necessarily require Charter amendments;

- In the area of Security Council working methods, we generally welcome and support any reasonable motion towards greater openness and transparency of the Council´s work.

Mr. President,

I am confining myself to these brief comments. There is little need to elaborate the details of the proposals before mobilizing political will and environment conducive for the reform. Let me express my hope that the newly found unity in action against terrorism will help to generate such a momentum, and this will be soon mirrored in greater unity in our reform efforts. Your guidance in this, Mr. President, will be crucial.

Thank you

Statement by H.E. Mr. Hynek Kmonicek, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations on Agenda Item "Report of the International Atomic Energy Agency", 56th Session of the United Nations General Assembly

Mr. President,

Since the Czech Republic has joined the position presented on behalf of the EU and the associated countries by the head of the Belgium delegation, I would like to touch only upon some of the topics that are of particular importance to my Government.

At the outset I would also like to thank Director General Dr. ElBaradei for his comprehensive statement highlighting the progress of the Agency=s activities during the past year.

Mr. President,

First, let me share some thoughts on the role of the IAEA on the threshold of the new millennium. The Czech Republic supports the ongoing joint efforts of the Secretariat and the Member States to strengthen the Agency and to increase the necessary effectiveness and efficiency and to address its budgetary constraints. Given the challenges of the 21st century, it is an imperative to make better use of the Agency´s capacities as the only global platform for co-operation in peaceful use of nuclear energy and ionising radiation. At the same time, it is equally important to maintain and strengthen the objective character of its work which ensures its competence and world recognized reputation.

We cannot overstate the importance of IAEA´s responsibilities in relation to the Non-Proliferation Treaty which require continuous support by all members in terms of policies, know-how, financing and implementation of the related legal instruments. My country is about to complete necessary domestic legislative and systemic framework for the implementation of the Additional Protocol signed with the IAEA during the 43rd General Conference. A comprehensive amendment of the Czech Atomic Act on which the Parliament will deliberate by the end of this year is the last prerequisite for launching a speedy ratification of the Additional Protocol. Being well on track to applying the strengthened IAEA safeguards to the full we reiterate our call on the Member States who have not already done so to proceed likewise.

We commend the support the Agency has rendered to the Member States in recent years in working out and implementing important legal instruments - let me recall the Nuclear Safety Convention, the Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and the Safety of Radioactive Safety Management - the Joint Convention.

I am pleased to report that my country was among the 26 states that adhered to the Joint Convention by depositing its instrument of ratification by 20 March 2001, enabling its entry into force 90 days later. Using this opportunity, I would like to appeal to all Member States which had not yet done so to take steps necessary for becoming party to the Joint Convention in time to be able to attend first Review Meeting of the Contracting Parties.

The second round of reporting procedure for the Convention on Nuclear Safety is just about to start. The Government of the Czech Republic already approved amended text of the National Report which provides for an update on existing regulatory and legal framework as well as a case study for nuclear power plants Dukovany and Temelín. We are looking forward to the second Review Conference of the Contracting Parties scheduled for April 2002 to demonstrate our full compliance with the requirements of the Convention.

We also welcome the Agency´s role in the process which may lead up to amending and reinforcing the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material. Like the EU, the Czech Republic is in favour of considering the need for a review conference after a well defined draft amendment is prepared.

Mr. President,

In the very end of last year the Czech Government has approved an updated national energy policy. The nuclear option is maintained, together with a better effort on efficient use of energy and on the use of renewable energy sources. This has been done in line with the new legal framework implemented in the Czech Republic for utilisation of nuclear energy and ionising radiation. This framework is built on priorities of the quality of the control and of the transparency of nuclear industry, as well as of the independence and diversity of the expertise related to safety and radiological protection. In the context of these steps, the commissioning of NPP Temelín has neared its final stage. The power plant underwent thorough licensing procedure and taking into account complexity of the technology there was nothing irregular happening during the commissioning tests up to now. Recognising international dimension of nuclear safety and radiation protection issues, the Czech authorities and the license holder submitted the siting, design improvement, construction and commissioning of the power plant to scrutiny by a number of independent peer-reviews with international participation.

Mr. President,

At this stage, I have to come back to what I have said in the beginning of my address, underlining the role of the Agency as an information exchange platform and action centre for peaceful use of nuclear energy and ionizing radiation.

Since there are several lessons we have learnt in the course of the NPP Temelín debate, I would like to share some of them with you:

- the valuable results of peer-reviews as provided by the IAEA should be better advertised among and explained to the public of Member States; the same applies more generally to the philosophy of IAEA safety standards as well to the measures taken in increasing the safety level of nuclear installations;

- a failure by member states to take a due account of, let alone a deliberate ignoring the findings made by IAEA especially on safety of nuclear installations, undermines the competence and authority of the Agency;

- multiplication of nuclear installations´ safety reviews by various organisations and fora may put in doubt the central role of the IAEA in this field; we must not allow this role of theAgency erode.

Mr. President,

Let me now touch upon the issue of the IAEA technical assistance and cooperation. In the year 2001 the Czech Republic took another step in balancing the amount of technical support received and assistance provided to other Member States. We gradually increase our involvement in Technical Co-operation Programmes for third countries where we can share with them our knowledge and expertise. Earlier this year we pledged voluntary financial contributions to national TC projects in Armenia, Bulgaria and Georgia. We are continuing in long term initiative in accepting fellowships and scientific visits related to upgrading national radiation protection networks in various regions of the world.

Let me also express our gratitude to the Secretariat, namely to the Europe section of the TC Department, for excellent co-ordination work in the projects in which my country takes part. I would specifically like to to mention the regional initiative of countries operating NPPs with VVER 1000 reactor type to review design basis of these reactors, which is being operated under the Europe Regional Programme.

Mr. President,

In conclusion, let me reassure you of my Government=s continued commitment to supporting and expanding the Agency´s role in international cooperation in peaceful and safe use of nuclear energy and ionising radiation for the benefit of all Member States. At the same time I would also like to express the Czech Republic´s appreciation for the Director General Dr. Mohamed ElBarade´s personal involvement in promoting the IAEA activities. We look forward to further fruitful co-operation with him in the course of his second term in office.

Thank you Mr. President.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Vladimir Galuska, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, General Assembly Debate on Terrorism

Mr. President,

Allow me at the outset to express on behalf of the Czech Government and the Czech nation our heartfelt sympathy to those who lost their loved ones in the terrorist attack on 11 September, 2001 and to all the American people. We are deeply moved by this unspeakable tragedy and share with them in grief. We express our full solidarity with the Government of the United States in the resolve to punish the perpetrators and sponsors of this appalling act, and to fight international terrorism.

Mr. President,

Terrorism has been a traditional topic in the agenda of the General Assembly since 1972. Throughout these years the United Nations adopted a great many resolutions in this regard and mainly significantly contributed to the creation of a solid legal system, consisting up till now of twelve universal criminal conventions, aimed at suppressing various forms of terrorism. It shows, that the United Nations has never underestimated the threat of terrorism. In spite of this, the urgency of this item of the GA agenda has never appeared to be so alarming as it is in these days. Nobody ever foresaw, that the scourge of terrorism, however seriously it has been perceived, would some day reach the level of global and systematic threat for the international security, comparable with armed conflicts. In the wake of the tragic events of 11 September, the evaluation of the threat of terrorism by the international community changed once and for all. If not before, then no doubt on that day, international terrorism became a threat to the world peace and it is therefore necessary to fight it accordingly. The United Nations, as the only universal international organization, is predetermined to play a primary role in this fight and I am glad to say that the first actions of our organization after September 11, proved its capability and readiness to live up to these expectations. The Security Council Resolution No. 1368 as well as the General Assembly Resolution 56/01 put the terrorist attack of September 11 into the above-mentioned context and prepared the ground for the Security Council Resolution No. 1373 of 28 September 2001, which unprecedentedly tackles terrorism within the framework of Chapter VII of the UN Charter. This historic step promotes the legal system of suppressing terrorism to a new level, which no longer challenges only states parties to the relevant conventions, but the whole international community.

Mr. President,

Despite all these recent efforts, we must continue further in strengthening political and legal instruments in this field. The need to adhere to, and fulfill existing legal instruments was eloquently stressed in the EU statement, delivered in this forum on Monday, October 1st, with which the Czech Republic, as the associated country to the EU, aligned itself . In this connection, I am proud to say that the Czech Republic has significantly been participating in the building of this multilateral legal system. The Czech Republic is a State Party to 9 of the 12 sectoral antiterrorist conventions, including the Terrorist Bombing Convention as one of the two most recent ones, and a signatory State to the Financing Terrorism Convention, which was signed by President Havel during last year's Millennium Summit. Now, our legislative bodies are making every effort to adopt necessary measures in our domestic legislature to implement obligations arising from this convention, as well as the relevant provisions on financing of terrorism, contained in the resolution 1373 and the EU action plan on terrorism. As far as the current, and future negotiations on new antiterrorist instruments are concerned, the Czech delegates are ready to do their best to help move forward a comprehensive convention on terrorism this fall. The contribution of the general convention may be enormous, if it succeeds in laying down a general definition of terrorism, which represents a missing element of the international political and legal framework in this field.

Nevertheless, let me emphasize that the Czech Republic does not focus only on multilateral conventions. An effective work of the Ministry of Interior and police organs with respect to suppressing terrorism requires the Czech Republic to enter in bilateral cooperation with a great many of countries and the INTERPOL. For this purpose, the Czech Republic concluded so far 15 bilateral international agreements on cooperation in fighting organized crime and terrorism, and 15 others are in different stages of preparatory work. In addition, as a country heading for the EU membership, the Czech Republic intends to cooperate with the EUROPOL, an EU police institution, pending the approval of the agreement on cooperation.

Mr. President,

Allow me to raise one concrete proposal on how to contribute to the above-mentioned strengthening of the international system on the suppressing of terrorism. As you may recall, the Secretary-General had invited the Heads of States and Governments attending the Millennium Summit last year, to make use of that unique occasion to reaffirm their commitment to the international rule of law by signing and ratifying some of the international conventions, deposited with the Secretary-General. This invitation had resulted in 274 actions on treaties during the three days of the Summit. A similar treaty event, was supposed to be organized on the occasion of the Special Session on Children, which must have been postponed because of the tragedy of the September 11. In the light of the last year's success, I should like to propose, that a treaty ceremony of this kind be organized now for the sectoral antiterrorist conventions, deposited with the Secretary-General. Such an event could be held at an appropriate time during the 56th session of the GA and I firmly believe that numerous signatures and ratifications of the conventions would contribute to their universal acceptance.

Mr. President,

This statement and above-mentioned steps undertaken by the Czech Republic reflect my country's desire and determination to play its part in concerted international efforts to eradicate international terrorism. In this connection, I call on all Member States to maintain the sense of solidarity and cooperation, which united us after September 11, and step up our efforts to liberate the world from the scourge of terrorism.

Thank you, Mr. President.

Statement by H.E. Mr. Vladimir Galuska, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the "High-level dialog on strengthening international economic cooperation for development through partnership"

Mr. President,

Since this is the first time I am taking floor in my country capacity, let me congratulate you, Mr. President, on behalf of my government , on the election to the post of the President of the 56th General Assembly and pledge our full support to you in your important and demanding work.

The Czech Republic aligned itself with the EU statement on the topic under discussion. We unequivocally share the views on all issues expressed in the EU statement as presented by the Belgian Presidency yesterday. The Czech delegation would like to further elaborate on three, in our view crucial, points: development dimension of the international economic cooperation, countries´ responsibility for their development and regional cooperation.

Mr. President,

The issue of international economic cooperation for development has been a major concern of the international community over the decades. But the most recent events and initiatives have created a truly new opportunity for strengthening the cooperation and facilitating the integration of developing countries into the world economy. The turning point was the adoption of the Millennium Declaration in which the Heads of State and Heads of Government agreed upon ambitious development goals. The Third Conference on the Least Developed Countries and particularly, the preparatory process for the International Conference on Financing for Development have also been important fora for tackling major existing challenges in economic cooperation for development.

The Czech Republic attaches great importance to the UN development goals . To achieve these specific complex development goals mostly by 2015 requires numerous broadly based actions by various players, being it national governments, international organizations, civil society organizations and private sector entities. Our perception is that the United Nations should play a central role in building coalitions for full implementation of the Millennium Declaration. That is why, we strongly support all initiatives that have lead to consultations and cooperation between the United Nations and Bretton Woods Institutions and WTO, particularly within the preparatory process of the International Conference on Financing for Development.

We are pleased to see that the agenda of financing for development will be considered at the next joint World Bank - IMF meeting of the Development Committee and that a possible development dimension of a new round of trade negotiations is now the subject of intense consultations. We also welcome the significant outreach to the business sector and civil society which has been made within the preparatory process on Financing for Development and the Global Partnership Initiative. We believe that all these processes will establish close collaboration and a better-coordinated approach in implementation of the follow-up to the Millennium Declaration and moreover, they will strengthen focus on development in international economic cooperation and perhaps make the international economic architecture more development-oriented.

Mr. President,

The development dimension of the international economic cooperation has enormous implications for integration of developing countries and countries in transition into the global economy. However, enabling international environment is not enough. It can have supportive and catalytic impact but the primary responsibility for its own development and integration into the world economy lies on each developing country and country in transition.

The countries themselves must be the driving force in their integration. They need to develop consistent country-driven poverty reduction and development strategies which would set development goals at the country level and establish base for sound and coherent macroeconomic financial and trade policies while embracing economic as well as social factors of development. In this context, let me point out that PRSP, which is currently being introduced by IMF in LDCs, is an exceptionally important instrument as it introduces new approach to development by prioritizing consistent country-driven development strategy and coherent policies with supporting role to be played by international development partners. Therefore, we believe that this kind of development strategy should be widely applied in developing and transition countries.

My last point relates to the regional cooperation. In this connection, let me appreciate Conference room paper 3 which provides us with valuable data about new trends and regional perspectives on globalization. It also provides an evidence about how immensely important the regional cooperation is. It is a very suitable format for both trade relationship and foreign direct investment. In our view, the potential of regional cooperation has not been fully recognized yet, particularly in financial and monetary matters. The Czech delegation is convinced that besides the extremely pressing issues of globalization and interdependence, appropriate and more-focused attention should be given also to regional cooperation and integration.

Thank you, Mr. President

Statement of H.E. Mr. Vladimir Galuska, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, Chairman of the Group of Eastern European States at the opening of the 56th Session of the General Assembly

Mr. President,

I have the honour to speak here today on behalf of the Group of Eastern European States.

The purpose of today´s plenary meeting was to open the new session of the General Assembly.

Under the shadow of the horrifying tragedy that struck New York, Washington D.C. and the whole of the United States, I , however, feel my duty to raise, first of all, our voice of protest against what we witnessed yesterday. Members of the Group of Eastern European States unanimously condemn these terrorist acts that we perceive to be aimed not only against the United States of America, but against the whole civilized world, indeed the whole humanity.

Let me, Mr. President, express deepest sympathy and condolences by our Governments to the victims, their families and to the people and the Government of the United States.

We express our readiness to unite to strengthen immediately national as well as international efforts to prevent and suppress terrorism by increased co-operation and full implementation of relevant international anti-terrorist conventions, Security Council resolutions and national as well as regional security measures.

I am convinced Mr. President that the Group of Eastern European States, for its part will unanimously support the draft resolution A/56/L.1, which you have so rightly proposed.

Given the circumstances, our work during the 56th Session of the General Assembly will be extremely challenging and responsible. I would like to congratulate you, Mr. President, on your election and, at the same time, express in advance my profound appreciation to the demanding work which lies ahead and which, I am sure, you will exercise in excellent manner. We believe that under your able leadership we will continue to implement necessary steps towards the fulfillment of the Millennium Summit's Declaration goals.

Mr. President,

I would like to use this opportunity to express the appreciation and gratitude of the Group of Eastern European States to your predecessor, Mr. Harri Holkeri of Finland, for his active role and devoted work as the President of the General Assembly. We hope that his legacy will inspire us during this session of the General Assembly.

I thank you.