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Key points of the address by Permanent Representative of Belarus to the United Nations Andrei Dapkiunas at the General debate of the Sixty-third session of the United Nations General Assembly (29 September 2008)

There is an urgent need to reorient international relations from confrontation fuelled by petty national interests to equal and mutually respectful dialogue and cooperation.
Obtrusive imposition of one's will on others, dictate and pressure only reinforce existing contradictions and make them insurmountable.
Global challenges not only seriously impede the process of development of humankind, but also threaten its civilised existence. Nowadays even a peripheral local conflict poses a threat to the whole world.
Progress in ensuring greater role and authority of the General Assembly and enhancing its impact on world affairs could be possible only when every Member State would be sure of its modest but positive contribution to the tackling of global problems receiving an attentive and unbiased consideration by the Assembly
Millennium Development Goals will remain a piece of paperwork unless the larger developed states cease to regard the creation of favourable conditions for the development of the countries of the South and provision of financial and economic assistance to the developing countries through the prism of their own geopolitical interests.
Notwithstanding all inspirational talk and numerous declarations by the General Assembly, a true global partnership for development has not yet been established.
Climate change, shortage of energy resources and food are, in essence, the consequences of the current structure of energy consumption. We have to deal with one multi-dimensional global challenge.
The most promising way of addressing the dilemma 'economic growth – environment' is to establish international cooperation on global proliferation of technologies of energy saving, alternative and renewable sources of energy.
An integral and key element of such cooperation should be the ensuring of fair access of all Member States to these technologies through the creation within the framework of the United Nations of the appropriate regulatory mechanism.
The first step in this direction – thematic debate on ensuring access of all states to the technologies of energy saving and of use of alternative and renewable sources of energy – can be taken at the 63rd session of the General Assembly. This access to technologies should, of course, be ensured with due respect to intellectual property rights.
A multi-faceted energy agenda of the United Nations has to be established.
Proposal of Turkmenistan to discuss the ways and means of ensuring reliability of energy transit is timely and promising.
A code of conduct for transnational corporations engaged in oil and gas production and mining in developing countries has to be established.
Water rivals oil and gas in giving rise to conflicts that take people's lives.
A search for a feasible way to desalinate sea water should be seen as a priority objective of global scientific research in the coming decades.
The United Nations should determine the future of these prospective technologies. It is critical to agree on an intergovernmental mechanism which would prevent the concentration of these technologies in the hands of the chosen few.
Delay and hesitation which are being displayed in addressing the challenge of climate change should be avoided when dealing with other urgent issues of the international agenda.
Timely prevention of exploitation of nations and individuals is a major prerequisite for sustainable humanitarian development.
Elaboration of a UN plan of action should be a fundamental next step in the efforts of the international community to stop human trafficking. All necessary groundwork for this next move has been created.
Inadequate response to this threat may contribute to the exploitation of the whole peoples and increase a risk of reemergence of colonial thinking - this time at the new level of globalisation that could make this problem exceptionally large-scale and dangerous. Humankind has to prevent this from happening.
Belarus wholeheartedly supports the initiative of the President of the General Assembly on democratisation of the United Nations.
Belarus has always been a proponent of honest democratic relations in the UN system,      a supporter of equal opportunities for all Member States and of the establishment of common rules of the game for the whole membership.
Belarus calls on all Member States to support her and bring to a successful conclusion the inadmissibly lengthy quest of Belarus for the rightful membership in the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of the Atomic Radiation. This just and long-overdue decision should be taken on the recommendation of the Fourth Committee in the resolution “Effects of atomic radiation”.
Democratisation of the UN Secretariat has to be strengthened and accelerated. The principle of fair geographical distribution has to be consistently implemented in the selection of the highest officers of the Secretariat departments: the highest 5 officers in each department have to represent 5 regional groups.

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