Noting that amid a complex and polarized environment, the global community faces challenges that include terrorism, climate change and mass migration, the Prime Minister of Nepal called for a greater display of wisdom, knowledge and capacity to address pressing issues.
“As we embark upon a path of implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, [the] challenges are the litmus tests for our leadership,” said Sher Bahadur Deuba, the Prime Minister of Nepal, addressing the 72nd annual general debate at the United Nations General Assembly.
Recalling his country’s contributions to UN peacekeeping efforts around the world, he said that troop and police contributing countries must be given fair opportunities to serve in leadership positions both in the field and at headquarters. Also on peacekeeping, he stressed the protection of civilians must be prioritized and that the UN must move “from zero tolerance to zero case scenario” on sexual exploitation and abuse.
Also in his address, the Nepali leader urged for greater security for migrants and, in the context of increasing frequency and destruction by natural disasters, called for greater cooperation and coordination in prevention, mitigation and recover efforts.
He also spoke of his country’s commitment to human rights, noting that Nepal’s Constitution bans death penalty in all circumstances. He also spoke of strengthening of the country’s human rights commission as well as protection of the rights of women and other disadvantaged sections of the society.
Prime Minister Deuba also highlighted the recent local elections in his country – the first in 20 years –and said that preparations are underway to hold provincial and federal elections.
Also in his address, he deplored the actions of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) which he referred to as the “continued defiance” by it of repeated calls by the Security Council and the international community, and urged it abide by all relevant Council resolutions.