[Article 1117]PM at UN General Assembly

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, today called for urgent reform and rejuvenation of the United Nations, as it enters its seventieth year of existence.

Addressing the 69th session of the UN General Assembly in New York today, the Prime Minister urged all member nations to deliver on the commitment of UN reform. He said institutions which reflect the compulsions of the twentieth century risk irrelevance. He also highlighted the need to re-energize the process of UN peacekeeping, and said countries which contribute their military personnel for such operations need to have greater say in decision-making.

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He said the seventieth year of the United Nations should be an opportunity to reflect on what all has been achieved, and to prepare a roadmap for the future. He called for Universities and youth to be involved in this process of transformation.

He said the 21st century had its own set of challenges, and the United Nations needs to reflect contemporary realities.

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The Prime Minister referred to the emergence of several groups of countries with the prefix “G” and said that we must move towards a “G-all” and see how the UN can be made more effective.

He said the fact that billions of people are without basic sanitation, drinking water and electricity highlights how much needs to be done in an organized way at the global level. The Prime Minister forcefully raised the issue of terrorism, and said no country in the world was today safe from it. He condemned the use of terms such as “good terrorism” and “bad terrorism” and said some countries were still harbouring terrorists and using terrorism as an instrument of state policy.

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He emphasized the need for an early adoption of the ComprehensiveConvention on Global Terrorism, saying it is a matter that has been pending for long.

The Prime Minister said his Government has given priority to friendship and cooperation with neighbours, and has the same policy towards Pakistan.

He said he wants bilateral talks with Pakistan, in all seriousness, in an environment of peace, without the shadow of terror. He said it is upto Pakistan to create an appropriate atmosphere for talks. He said right now the priority should be to assist the flood-affected people of Kashmir, and for this, he has offered assistance to Pakistan as well.

The Prime Minister highlighted India as a country that stands for universal justice,dignity, opportunity and prosperity. He said conversation with nature was inherent in India`s “philosophy.” He suggested that the United Nations work towards an International Yoga Day.

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Shri Narendra Modi said international trade agreements must take into account the concerns and interests of one-another (everyone).

Earlier, the Prime Minister took a tour of the UN Headquarters, and had a meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon