Last week at the UN General Assembly

October 1, 2012 § Leave a comment

Last week, I accompanied Bahrain ‘s Foreign Minister, His Excellency Shaikh Khalid bin Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa, in New York during the opening session of the 67th United Nations General Assembly. During the session, leaders from each country are given an opportunity to address the Assembly and discuss issues of great global importance. H.E. Shaikh Khalid Addressed the Assembly on Thursday evening.

H.E. Shaikh Khalid also addressed events since the outbreak of unrest in February 2011 and reiterated the proactive steps the Government of Bahrain has undertaken to make meaningful reform. Below, please find several quotes from the speech. And you can download the full version here.

On the history of reform in Bahrain:

“Throughout its long history, Bahrain has opted for dialogue as an approach to all its modernization efforts oriented towards meeting the requirements of modern times, beginning by the election of municipal councils in the 1920s and the parliamentary councils during the last decades. Important results were achieved in providing a greater degree of equality, participation, transparency, political rights and human dignity. This represents a historical achievement towards a society based on competitive sustainability, justice, the rule of law, equality, and the consecration of the principles of popular representation and participation in the decision making process.”

On Responding to the Unrest:

“The Kingdom of Bahrain has faced since last year a number of serious challenges to its security and stability which it addressed with full transparency, commitment and honesty in order to restore security and stability. In this context, the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry was created to establish the truth and give each person his or her due. Consequently, a comprehensive dialogue took place among the various sectors of society and resulted in a series of constitutional and legislative reforms encompassing all aspects of life: political, social, and legal.”

On Bahrain’s response to the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review in Geneva:

“Consistent with its continued efforts aimed at building a pluralistic Bahraini society and its commitment to the protection and enhancement of human rights, the Kingdom of Bahrain last week accepted, before the Human Rights Council in Geneva, more that 90% of the recommendations made by the Council in the context of the Universal Periodic Review.”

On the Gulf Union:

“The challenges and threats facing our region led the Member States of the Gulf Cooperation Council to appreciate the need for greater synergies among them, notably by endorsing the proposal made by the Custodian of the two Holy Shrines, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, to move from the stage of “cooperation” to one of “union” with a view to addressing those challenges and threats and building the capacities necessary to achieve a unified society based on a shared vision for the future, commensurate with accelerating movement of the world and responding to the aspirations of the peoples of the GCC, deeply convinced that their interests and assets can only be served through solidarity and unity so as to preserve national independence and state sovereignty and to adapt to the strategic global and regional transformations.”

On Iran’s interference in the internal affairs of the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council:

“While the Member States of the GCC stretch out their hand to their neighbor, the Islamic Republic of Iran, they unfortunately find no response that may facilitate confidence building and peace and security. On the contrary, they have to face constant interference in their internal affairs,” he said.

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