Statement by H.E. Mr. Yukio Takasu
Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Japan
Introduction of draft resolution on human security
to the General Assembly plenary meeting
New York, 16 July 2010
On behalf of the Government of Japan and the co-sponsors, I have the distinctive honour to introduce the draft resolution A/64/L.61, entitled “Follow-up to paragraph 143 on human security of the 2005 World Summit Outcome”.
Before presenting the elements of the draft resolution, allow me to briefly touch upon the background behind this first ever resolution of the UN General Assembly on human security.
Human security is contained in Paragraph 143 of the 2005 World Summit Outcome which was unanimously agreed by our political leaders.
Quote “We stress the right of people to live in freedom and dignity, free from poverty and despair. We recognize that all individuals, in particular vulnerable people, are entitled to freedom from fear and freedom from want, with an equal opportunity to enjoy all their rights and fully develop their human potential. To this end, we commit ourselves to discussing and defining the notion of human security in the General Assembly.” Unquote
To follow up this important commitment made by our Heads of States and Governments, Japan took the initiative of organizing in the UN an informal group called “Friends of Human Security” in October 2006 and promoted the debate on human security among the Member States. Since the second meeting, Japan, together with Mexico as co-chair, has organized biannual meetings of Friends of Human Security which has developed into an open-ended forum for interested Member States and UN organizations. More than 140 Member States have participated in the seven meetings held to date. The Friends of Human Security agreed to promote the human security approach -- the human-centred and integrated approach -- in addressing UN agendas such as the Millennium Development Goals, peacebuilding, climate change, humanitarian assistance, protection of women and children among others. It has done so in a practical manner on the basis of a working definition of human security “to protect the vital core of all human lives in ways that enhance human freedoms and human fulfilment”.
Last year, the Friends group took the initiative to request the Secretary-General, His Excellency Mr. Ban Ki-moon to prepare for a report on human security. We are grateful to the Secretary-General for his contribution which was the important input for consideration by the General Assembly. We are also grateful to the President of General Assembly, His Excellency Dr. Ali Treki for kindly organizing the first formal debate on human security in the plenary meeting on 20 and 21 May. As an initiator of the debate, we are pleased with so many positive participations of high quality and strong support expressed to the significance of human security approach. I believe the constructive debates have greatly facilitated to broaden the common understanding of human security among Member States and to faithfully implement the commitment of our leaders.
This draft resolution before us, in its preambular part, recalls paragraph 143 of the 2005 World Summit Outcome and reaffirms its respect for all the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations. Human security will be promoted in the United Nations in conformity with the Charter.
Article 1 of the Charter lists the purposes of the UN -- international peace and security, friendly relations among nations, cooperation in economic, social, cultural or humanitarian fields, and respect of human rights.
Article 2 lists the principles of the UN -- sovereign equality, peaceful settlement of dispute, refraining from the threat or use of force against territorial integrity, non-intervention in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of Member States, among others.
In its operative part, the draft resolution takes note of the General Assembly’s first formal debate on human security in May, in which Member States contributed actively to forge common understanding of the concept based on the valuable inputs made by the report of the Secretary-General entitled “Human Security”.
Then, the draft takes note of the ongoing efforts to define the notion of human security, which has been led by many Governments at the national level as well as through the international initiatives at the regional and the global levels. We are fully cognisant of a number of worthwhile initiatives in this regard. The draft resolution then recognizes the need to continue the discussions to achieve an agreement on the definition of human security.
Finally, the draft resolution requests the Secretary-General to seek the views of the Member States on this important notion and to submit a report to the General Assembly at its sixty-sixth session. We urge the Secretary-General to intensify its interaction with Member States. The General Assembly decides to continue its consideration of this matter. We look forward to continued active discussions on human security within the framework of the General Assembly.
Today’s multiple and interrelated threats affect the lives of millions of people. Global issues such as economic and financial crisis, food security, health, other issues related to the Millennium Development Goals, climate change, conflict, refugees and IDPs, peace building, drug trafficking, transnational organized crimes, gender equality, and protection of women and children to name a few, affect the security and safety of each and every human beings no matter where they live. The vulnerable people suffer most from those global challenges.
Country-level aggregated approach does not suffice for tackling effectively these global issues that are both broad and deeply inter-connected. We need to address in an integrated and comprehensive manner and to focus not only at national level but also at an individual level. It is within such a context that Governments are expected to support the survival, livelihood and dignity of its people in a comprehensive manner as the fundamental basis for their national security.
The United Nations system has been supporting Member States to address human security challenges including through the United Nations Trust Fund for Human Security established by the Secretary General in 1999. This Trust Fund to date has supported projects to enhance human security of the vulnerable people in over 80 countries in concrete manner. There is a strong interest and broad appreciation to this Trust Fund. We urge Member States to make generous contributions. We should actively promote and support practical measures aiming to protect and empower the people and the communities, in parallel to the continued discussion in New York towards an agreement on definition.
The adoption of this draft resolution on human security is an important milestone in implementing the commitment of the World Summit Outcome and in promoting human security approach in UN activities. I wish to thank in particular co-sponsors for their support and commitment to this initiative. I wish also to express my appreciation to all delegates who participated actively in the negotiations for their understanding. I sincerely hope that the draft resolution will receive the full endorsement of the General Assembly and be adopted by consensus.