Addressing the General Assembly this evening, Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, said his country had a strong record in serving humanity and upholding the values of the United Nations.
He said that Canada had always been ready and willing to partner with other civilized countries in combating affronts to human dignity and international order and would continue to assist its allies in the international community to deal with today's grave challenges.
But any effort would in vain, however, “if we cannot provide people with alternatives to a better way of life,” said Mr. Harper. Trade and the effective delivery of aid have become the signature of Canada's outreach to the world. Canada is a case in point of how trade had made “great nations out of small ones”, and created new opportunities for ordinary people and their families.
Looking towards the post-2015 development agenda, maternal, newborn and child health must once again become a top priority. Despite remarkable progress in these areas in recent years, thanks to vaccines and other simple techniques, millions of mothers and children who would have died in the past now had a chance to survive.
On this issue, he praised the Secretary-General's “Every Woman, Every Child” initiative as it provided a clear path forward to prevent the deaths of children from easily avoidable causes. It is within our power to create a better world for our children.
Since Wednesday, speakers have taken to the podium in the UN’s renovated General Assembly Hall to address the 193 Member State on the theme of “Delivering on and Implementing a Transformative Post-2015 Development Agenda” as well as urgent crises ranging from the ongoing conflicts in Syria, Iraq, Ukraine and South Sudan.