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President: The Hon. Julian R. Hunte..............................................(Saint Lucia)
The meeting was called to order at 10.05 a.m.
Agenda item 9 (continued)
Address by Mr. Simeon de Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Prime Minister of the Republic of Bulgaria
The President: The Assembly will now hear an address by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Bulgaria.
Mr. Simeon de Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Prime Minister of the Republic of Bulgaria, was escorted to the rostrum.
The President: I have great pleasure in welcoming His Excellency Mr. Simeon de Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Prime Minister of the Republic of Bulgaria, and inviting him to address the General Assembly.
Mr. Saxe-Coburg-Gotha (Bulgaria) (spoke in French): ...
My Government is very concerned as a result of events in the Middle East. The road map elaborated by the Quartet remains valid and must be implemented by the parties concerned. The Government of Bulgaria reiterates its appeal to the Palestinian Authority to fully meet its obligations under the road map to stop suicide attacks against civilians. We call on the Israeli Government to stop extrajudicial executions and to renounce its plans to expel President Yasser Arafat.
The Acting President (spoke in Spanish): I now give the floor to His Excellency Mr. Somsavat Lengsavad, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic.
Mr. Lengsavad (Lao People’s Democratic Republic): ...
With regard to the Middle East, we continue to be gravely concerned about the ongoing violence and disproportionate use of force that have brought nothing but destruction and death to both Palestine and Israel. We urge the two sides to exercise the utmost restraint and engage in earnest negotiations so that peace and cooperation may eventually ensue in the region. If that is done, by 2005 the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people to establish an independent and viable State, living side by side with Israel in peace and security, could become a reality.
The Acting President: I now give the floor to His Excellency Mr. Jan Petersen, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Norway.
Mr. Petersen (Norway): ...
The year 2003 has been a tragic one for Israelis and Palestinians. Their acceptance of the road map for peace boded well, but again violence and not politics is determining the course of development. A political solution is needed, building on a parallel process where Israel takes significant steps to end the occupation, and where the Palestinian Authority takes determined steps to fight terror. The ultimate goal, in which we will not lose faith, is that of two States — Israel and Palestine — living side by side in peace and security.
Norway urges Israel to do its utmost to ease the living conditions of the Palestinians. In our capacity as chairman of the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee for assistance to the Palestinian people, Norway remains committed to rebuilding the Palestinian areas.
The President: I now give the floor to His Royal Highness Prince Mohamed Bolkiah, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Brunei Darussalam.
Prince Mohamed Bolkiah (Brunei Darussalam): ...
Since 1992, this Assembly has been debating reform. It has the support of a large majority here, including all members of the Non-Aligned Movement. The results of our failure to build on this support can now be clearly seen. Our Security Council has been gravely divided and the past year has left a legacy of bitterness. The consequences for the ordinary people we represent — the people of developing nations year after year, the people of Iraq for the past 10 years or more, and the citizens of Palestine for over half a century — have been ever more disastrous.
The Acting President (spoke in Russian): I now give the floor to His Excellency Mr. Surakiart Sathirathai, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand.
Mr Sathirathai (Thailand): ...
No one deserves peace, stability and a prosperous future more than the peoples of the Middle East. Far too long have the people of that region suffered from violence, acts of terror and despair. We call upon the international community to come together in addressing this problem. All sides must seize the opportunity to embark on the road towards a just and comprehensive peace so that the people of Israel and the people of Palestine can at last live in peace, security and harmony.
The meeting rose at 1.05 p.m.
This record contains the text of speeches delivered in English and of the interpretation of speeches delivered in the other languages. Corrections should be submitted to the original languages only. They should be incorporated in a copy of the record and sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned to the Chief of the Verbatim Reporting Service, room C-154A. Corrections will be issued after the end of the session in a consolidated corrigendum.