In the name of Allah, most compassionate, most merciful.
Heads of Delegations,
It is with pleasure that I congratulate you, Mr. President, on behalf of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz, King of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, on your election to the presidency of the current session of the General Assembly which corresponds with the Fiftieth Anniversary of the United Nations and carries special significance. Your election is an expression of appreciation for you and your country. I also wish to note the efforts of His Excellency, the Secretary-General, in the service of peace.
As I journeyed to New York, to participate in this historic occasion, I reflected upon personal memories and general impressions. Fifty years ago, the late King Faisal, then the Foreign Minister of my country, accompanied by King Fahd, embarked upon a similar journey to the United States with instructions from the late King Abdul Aziz, the founder of modern Saudi Arabia, to participate in the establishment of this organization which arose out of tragic events.
My country had just emerged from its own experience in establishing the foundations of peace and security over most of the Arabian Peninsula. After King Abdul Aziz succeeded in reunifying the Kingdom in accordance with the noble Islamic Shariah, which calls for justice, equality and brotherhood among people, he participated in the establishment of an international organization which strives for the same principles on a universal level.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia represents the heart of the Muslim world, from whose soil the Islamic faith emerged; a faith which places peace at the forefront of its virtuous principles and rejects violence and terrorism. As a result, King Fahd continues to expend all efforts to enable the Kingdom to fulfill its mission towards peace.
The Kingdom has completed an ambitious development program with positive contributions to the creation of a better world. A good example is my country’s balanced oil policy, and its foreign aid program, which has contributed a total of 70.6 billion U.S. dollars during the past two decades to benefit seventy-two developing nations.
My country continues to believe in the importance of working towards realizing the objectives of this organization. The resolutions which the Security Council passed after the brutal Iraqi aggression against Kuwait had the most positive effect, and renewed confidence in the important role of the United Nations in supporting countries whose sovereignty is threatened. Kuwait was able to restore its right of existence and sovereignty.
I wish to note that the Kingdom attaches great importance to the safety and territorial integrity of Iraq. However, it holds the Iraqi regime responsible for the suffering of the Iraqi people, and believes that the only way to alleviate this suffering is for the Iraqi regime to fully implement all Security Council Resolutions, including the release of all prisoners of war.
The international efforts in this regard had a positive impact in advancing the Middle East peace process, which was launched at the Madrid Conference. While the peace process has not yet reached its final goal, the opportunity still remains to advance it, in particular the Syrian and Lebanese tracks, provided there is adherence to its basis, namely, UN Security Council Resolutions 242, 338 and 425 with regard to Israel’s withdrawal from the occupied Arab territories, and UN Security Council Resolution 252 regarding Jerusalem - al-Quds al-Shareef - which occupies a special place in the heart of every Muslim. In order for the desired peace to be based on trust, all weapons of mass destruction must be eliminated from the entire Middle East region.
The Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina is subject to Serb aggression which requires firmness in confronting it. The aggressor has refused to respond to all international pleas, while the Bosnians are denied the ability to acquire the means to defend themselves. The international response, under the leadership of the United States and NATO, was the right response, in spite of its delay.
This tragedy highlights the importance of the United Nations not becoming a strictly humanitarian organization, but resuming its role of securing peace on the basis of justice and equality. Our organization should not merely manage conflicts, but prevent them. Delays in responding to events cause the United Nations to waste its resources on failures rather than successes, and on death rather than life.
The United Nations’ productivity over the past fifty years, and the constructive role it has played in mobilizing international cooperation, gives us the determination to support it in fulfilling its mission, particularly today, as it finds itself at a crossroads which will determine its future. If the measurement of its success lies in its effectiveness in serving the cause of international peace and security, it is necessary to note the importance of abiding by its charter, and enforcing the resolutions of international legality. It is the hope of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques that our celebration today represents a turning point in the performance of our organization to enable it to achieve its goals, so that all people of the world can enjoy security and continued progress.
May God Almighty help us attain the objectives we strive for. As the Almighty reveals in the Holy Qur’an: "Help ye one another in righteousness and piety, but help ye not one another in sin and rancor.”
Thank you, and may God’s peace and blessings be upon you.