70 years ago, the Charter of the United Nations was adopted (10/23/2015) [fr]
United Nations 70th anniversary - Statement by Mr François Delattre, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations - 23 October 2015
Distinguished representatives, dear friends,
Seventy years ago, in the wake of World War II, the San Francisco Conference finished building the multilateral system we know today with the enthusiastic adoption of the UN Charter. Following the horrors of the Second World War, the dream of the organization’s founders is still a crucial commitment for the Community of Nations and for each and every one of us. That extraordinary moment was celebrated as a historical milestone, and today, at a time of gathering threats to peace and security, the Charter remains the cornerstone of a multilateral system that strives to maintain international peace and security, foster friendly ties among nations, and solve international problems through cooperation while encouraging respect for human rights and fundamental liberties for all. France deeply identifies with these goals, which have enabled the UN to make enormous progress – progress that is not always given due credit. And I want to solemnly reaffirm the importance France attaches to the achievement of these goals.
Yes, we should celebrate. And yes, we must certainly remain mobilized, now more than ever. But there is no room for complacency.
The situation in Syria offers us a tragic illustration of this. Seventy years on, the United Nations must once again confront considerable challenges to preserve its aims and principles.
Faced with these challenges, everyone must assume their responsibilities, at their own level. It is in this spirit that, without waiting for the Charter to be reformed, something I will return to in a moment, France and Mexico have proposed an initiative to control the use of the veto for the gravest crimes, as defined by the Rome Statute.
Revitalizing the organization requires more than improving its practices. Its structures must also be reformed. In this regard, I want to assure the Secretary-general of France’s full support for the measures he is taking to strengthen the role played by the United Nations in peacekeeping, to revitalize the Secretariat, and to improve the consistency, efficacy and efficiency of the UN system as a whole.
In light of this, and mindful of the fact that the effectiveness of an organization such as the United Nations is based on how representative it is, France resolutely supports the expansion of the Security Council to bring it more in line with 21st-century realities. If we want our organization to have a future worthy of the imaginings of the Charter’s creators, reform is essential.
Allow me, Mr. President, to conclude by applauding the way you have conducted the work of this Assembly. Together with you, we are embarking on an ambitious program to bring change by 2030. We know that we can count on your commitment to implement this program and to adopt a climate agreement in Paris that is universal, fair and ambitious.