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Eastern European leaders at UN urge stronger cooperation to tackle threats to global peace and stability

28 September 2015 – Poland is ready to participate in the attainment of the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted last week, the country's President told the UN General Assembly today, underlining that objectives such as the defence of democracy, sustainable economic growth, and fighting climate change all contribute to the preservation of peace world-wide.

"Poland actively participates among others in the international effort to arrive at a new climate agreement," President Andrzej Duda said during his address at the annual debate. "We see the need for the permanent understanding to be reached in this field, one which will be joined by all states."

President Duda further highlighted Poland's "impressive" track record in climate protection, noting that its economic transformation contributed to the lowering of CO2 emissions by 30 per cent in relation to 1990.

He further stated that "mindful of the tragedy of World War II, and of communist times," Poland also pledges to actively cooperate in building international order founded on law.

Indeed, he said contempt of international law may turn out to be the "germs of war, " explaining that this is currently visible in the Middle East where State institutions have been either excessively strained or replaced by private armies, terrorist militias, and self-proclaimed courts.

"[The] international community has never had to struggle with a humanitarian crisis of such a scale as in the present day," he declared. "At this point, I would like to mention with great satisfaction the outputs of Polish humanitarian organizations which lend active support to those in need."

The Polish leader stressed that women suffer twice as much during times of warfare and mass migrations.

"First, when they lose their sense of security, knowing that warfare is raging around," he explained. "And then, when they lose their husbands, fathers, brothers, and sometimes cannot even bury them. The tears of women distressed with war is the greatest charge against humanity in the 21st century."

President Duda also insisted that it is crucially important to continue the work on streamlining the effectiveness of the United Nations Security Council, the body responsible for protection of international peace.

"In recent years, the right to veto led on many occasions to a total stalemate of the Council's work on the most important security issues," he warned. "This is why Poland supports the French proposal to adopt a code of procedure for refraining from a veto in the event when we are confronted with gravest crimes in the sense of international law, including the crime of genocide."

He recalled that the year 1945 is more than the end of World War II, noting that it is also the origin of the United Nations, which he described as the most fundamental mechanism for cooperation in international community for the sake of global peace and security.

In his remarks, President Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus warned that the entire system of international security is going through a severe crisis. "Loss of mutual trust between global players, unwillingness to compromise and partial return to the 'bloc-type' confrontation have essentially put the world on the verge of a new war," he told the General Assembly.

"Efforts to impose upon other countries a certain development model continue unabated," he said, stressing that foreign intervention regime changes have plunged previously stable countries into chaos and anarchy.

"Do we feel better now that a number of national leaders were brutally murdered? Instead of promised democracy and prosperity people in these countries experience extreme suffering and are forced to flee," he said.

"This is why I am strongly convinced in the need to have a broad discussion in the United Nations about the principles of future coexistence of States and peoples."

Mr. Lukashenko decried "an artificial cult of individual rights and freedoms to the detriment of collective social interests" and called for "strong" States.

"Of late, resounding calls for maximum freedom have put to test the basic foundations of human society, including the family, good morals and virtue," he declared, voicing deep concern at the ongoing destruction of the traditional family in a number of countries where certain moral deviations and various social 'innovations' are called natural.

"Under the guise of protection of human rights, overthrow of governments, destruction of States and wars over resources are being justified. Chaos and anarchy are proliferated. Predatory attitude to nature and pursuit of easy profit are cultivated."



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