Fiji Day Celebrated at the United Nations
Fiji Day was celebrated at the United Nations today at a luncheon attended by the Ambassadors of one hundred countries. In his address to the gathering, Fiji’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Peter Thomson, said Fiji was greatly honored by the presence of the representatives of so many countries on its national day.
He recognized and thanked the members of the UN groups present with which Fiji worked closely at the United Nations, in particular the 11-member PSIDS (Pacific Small Island Developing States) and the 43-member AOSIS (Alliance of Small Island States). He thanked the 53-member Asia-Pacific Group for all its support to Fiji, as well as the 120-member NAM (the Non-Aligned Movement) and the 132-member Group of G77 and China, for providing such staunch assistance in the development of Fiji’s international position in recent times.
He said Fiji especially cherished its place in the General Assembly, where it shared rights and responsibilities with 192 other countries, as set out in the provisions of the UN Charter. Citing the many unresolved disputes and conflicts around the world, Ambassador Thomson called on UN Ambassadors to commit themselves to improving the performance of the United Nations through mediation and peaceful settlement of disputes. He gave the slow pace of Security Council reform, the ongoing stalemate and tensions in the Middle East, and the lack of progress on Climate Change negotiations as prime examples of the need for greater effort by UN Member States.
Reporting on progress in Fiji towards sustainable democracy, Ambassador Thomson said the Fiji Roadmap was very much on course. He outlined the work of the Constitutional Commission in 2012 and the arrangements for the adoption of a new Constitution in 2013, leading to general elections in 2014. Ambassador Thomson said that Fiji was calmly following these national developments, and that as always in Fiji, “the Roadmap is the Roadmap is the Roadmap.”
In a letter addressed to Fiji’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, the UN Secretary General, Mr Ban Ki-moon, extended his warmest congratulations to the Government and People of Fiji on the occasion of Fiji’s national holiday. He said he welcomed “the contribution, commitment and leadership of Fiji in the quest of the United Nations to usher in a more just, peaceful and prosperous future for all people.”