Outer space must be free of exploration by all states: Iranian envoy to UN
Speaking on Wednesday at a meeting of the Committee on Special Political Affairs and Decolonization (Fourth Committee), Majid Takht Ravanchi stressed the need to observe the promotion of non-discriminatory cooperation in space activities as well as non-intervention and non-interference in the activities of States in the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes.
The full text of his speech is as follows:
“In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful;
My delegation aligns itself with the statement made by the distinguished representatives of Azerbaijan on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement.
The Islamic Republic of Iran, as one of the founding members of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space since its establishment in 1958, continues to reaffirm the universally recognized principle that outer space is a common heritage and a province for all humanity. It must be explored and used exclusively for peaceful purposes as well as for the benefit of present and future generations of all peoples. It is also free to explore, use and access by all States on an equal basis, with full respect for the principle of non-ownership of any part of outer space. The promotion of non-discriminatory cooperation in outer space activities as well as non-intervention and non-interference in the activities of States in the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes must also be fully observed.
The Islamic Republic of Iran attaches great importance to the role of the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR). We believe that all UN member states should commit to cooperating with UNSCEAR in fulfilling its responsibilities. Likewise, UNSCEAR should be able to benefit from the contributions and knowledge of all countries in all possible ways, including by participating in the work of the Committee. In this regard, we welcome the advice of the Scientific Committee to the General Assembly that, in its view, the four Observer States (including my country) compare favorably to the framework of membership criteria and indicators. suggested by the Secretary General. We expect that current observer members from three different geographic regions will be represented as full members in the work of the Committee by their most qualified scientists.
We commend the United Nations Mine Action Service for its important role in assisting countries around the world that have been affected by landmines and explosive remnants of war. As the country with the most land affected by mines and explosive remnants in the world, the Islamic Republic of Iran faces illegal and harmful unilateral coercive measures which seriously hamper its efforts to carry out its mine action operations. . These measures have hampered my country’s access to demining materials, equipment, technologies and financial resources, with particular consequences for the local civilian populations. We call for the total and immediate lifting of all these measures in order to allow the targeted countries, including mine, to effectively protect their civilian populations against the daily risks posed by mines and explosive remnants of war. We urge relevant United Nations bodies, in particular UNMAS, to continue to assist affected countries and facilitate their full access to the delivery of supplies and equipment.
We reaffirm the need to support the mandate of the “Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories” as a contribution to raising awareness of illegal Israeli activities and the mobilization of the international action necessary to put an end to the violation of the fundamental human rights of the Palestinian people.
The Palestinian question has been the most difficult international concern for nearly seven decades. Besides the deprivation of their most inalienable rights, illegal, inhuman and expansionist Israeli policies and measures – pursued in violation of international law – have also led to the deterioration of the living conditions of the Palestinian people.
I would like to reiterate my Government’s unwavering and full support for the Palestinian people in their legitimate resistance against the occupation and in their just pursuit of exercising their inalienable rights to self-determination as well as the establishment of a sovereign Palestinian state with Al- Quds as its capital.
We see the Golan as an integral part of Syria. Iran reaffirms that all discriminatory and illegal policies towards the Syrian population, the presence of Israeli army bases in and around Syrian civilian areas as well as the construction and expansion of settlements constitute a flagrant violation of international law, of the Charter of the United Nations, relevant United Nations resolutions and the Fourth Geneva Convention.
The Islamic Republic of Iran reaffirms the right to self-determination of the Saharawi people in accordance with United Nations resolution 1514 (XV) on the granting of independence to colonial countries and peoples. We express our support for the ongoing negotiations with a view to reaching a just, lasting and mutually acceptable political solution which would allow the self-determination of the people of Western Sahara. We stress the importance of the parties’ commitment to continue this process through United Nations-sponsored talks, without preconditions and in good faith, in accordance with the purposes and principles of the United Nations Charter.
My delegation recognizes the importance of the Committee on Information as the principal intergovernmental decision-making body responsible for providing guidance on United Nations policies in the field of communication and information. We also attach great importance to the work and functioning of the Directorate of Global Communication (DGC). While welcoming the Department of Global Communication’s coverage of measures related to the COVID-19 crisis, my delegation urges the Department to continue to raise awareness and disseminate information on the negative impact of unilateral coercive measures on the capacity of affected countries to respond effectively. and effectively to the pandemic.
My delegation also supports multilingualism which contributes to the achievement of the purposes of the United Nations set out in Article 1 of the Charter of the United Nations. We believe that in addition to the six official languages of the United Nations, information should also be disseminated in other languages, including the Persian language which is spoken by tens of millions of people and which is widely regarded as the root of a great culture and civilization.
The Islamic Republic of Iran continues to emphasize the importance of United Nations peacekeeping operations in the maintenance of international peace and security. Iran was among the states to endorse the A4P Declaration of Shared Commitments on United Nations Peacekeeping Operations and expects this ambitious roadmap to continue to be followed with solid practical results.
We believe that it is very important to respect the purposes and principles of peacekeeping, namely the consent of the parties, the non-use of force except in cases of self-defense and impartiality. We firmly believe that respect for the principles of sovereign equality, political independence, territorial integrity of all States and non-interference in matters which are primarily within their national competence must also be supported in this regard.
I would like, once again, to reiterate our strong commitment and support for United Nations peacekeeping operations as a flagship activity of the United Nations. In this regard, my Government stands ready to increase its contribution to logistical and military peacekeeping operations by deploying troops, military observers, police and civilians.
I thank you.”