Revitalization of the Work of the General Assembly

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STATEMENT BY Mr. Nazifullah Salarzai

Chargé d’affaires of the Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to the United Nations

1st Meeting of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Revitalization of the Work of the General Assembly

28 February 2019

NEW YORK

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Distinguished co-Chairs,

Afghanistan aligns itself with the statement delivered by Algeria on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM).

On the offset, please allow me to extend my congratulations to Ambassador Bahous and Ambassador Mlynar for their leadership as co-Chairs of this year’s Ad Hoc Working Group on the Revitalization of the Work of the General Assembly.

I would also like to thank the President of the General Assembly, Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces, and the Under-Secretary-General for General Assembly and Conference Management, Catherine Pollard, for their statements and their engagement as part of this important process.

The revitalization of the United Nations is a vital process that will ensure a more effective, transparent and inclusive organization. We hope that these discussions will help us bring the organization closer to fit the purpose it was originally set for.

Co-Chairs,

In this opening meeting, Afghanistan would like to make some brief remarks on four points.

First, on the role and authority of the General Assembly, our delegation supports the continuous strengthening of the work of the General Assembly in order to carry out its mandate according to the UN Charter while also keeping discussions in the organization adapted to the challenges faced by the international community. On that note, preserving the intergovernmental and democratic nature of the UN through an effective dialogue between Member States and the organization is of outmost importance.

Second, on the working methods of the organization, Afghanistan joins calls to improve the efficiency and inclusiveness of the work of the General Assembly. On efficiency, this includes analyzing the timeliness of the presentation of resolutions and other topics for consideration of Member States, while also enhancing synergies to streamline processes and avoid duplications and overlaps when these exist. On inclusiveness, we welcome progress on behalf of the UN to improve its dissemination of information and look forward to further improvements on this.

Third, on strengthening the institutional memory of the Office of the President of the General Assembly, we support ensuring the proper allocation of human and financial resources of the Office to ensure a better functioning of the office, including better transitions between presidencies. A proper continuation of the work of the Office beyond transitions needs to be achieved.

Finally, on the selection and appointment of the Secretary-General, we celebrate the inclusive, transparent and democratic nature of the last selection process. On that vein, we hope that best practices of this and other selection process are taken into account in the hopes of establishing a stronger framework on the selection of the Secretary-General and even other Executive Officers.

Co-Chairs,

The revitalization of the General Assembly serves the purpose of reaffirming the collective ownership of this organization. We believe that the political will of Member States and the leadership of the co-Chairs will help continue to steer this process in the right direction.

Afghanistan reaffirms its commitments to continue to support the work of the Ad Hoc Work Group, and on that, let me stress to you, co-Chairs, our delegation’s full cooperation to working towards our collective objective of a true UN for all.

I thank you,

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