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STATEMENT BY AMBASSADOR SEBASTIANO CARDI, PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF ITALY TO THE UNITED NATIONS,  AT THE HIGH LEVEL EVENT OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY ON THE “CONTRIBUTIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND THE RULE OF LAW IN THE POST 2015 DEVELOPMENT AGENDA” (June 9, 2014)

Excellencies,

Mr President,

I would like to align myself with the Statements made by the European Union as well as the statement delivered by Austria on behalf of several Members of the Group of Friends of the Rule of Law.

In my national capacity, besides commending the PGA [you] for the organization of this event, I would like simply to emphasize three points.

First of all, Italy believes in continued dialogue between countries in all regions to make concrete steps to advance the Rule of Law, including in the framework of the post 2015 development agenda. This can be done only by keeping all references to Human Rights and to the Rule of Law in the negotiating document.

We also consider it important to show that cooperation in this area among various States and Regions of the World does already exist and is well functioning. Today – as a side event to this timely and opportune meeting organized by the President of the General Assembly – together with Qatar, Thailand and UNODC we just held a panel discussion with specific focus on “The Rule of Law, Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in the UN Development Agenda Beyond 2015: Engendering a Human Rights for all approach”. The discussion proved once more that Rule of Law and Development are interrelated and at the operational level there is interaction.

Secondly, we must keep in mind that creating a stable, transparent and accountable environment, truly respectful of human beings and their fundamental rights, is indispensable to establish conditions in which economic progress may be sustainable and come true for all.

Adding injustice, arbitrariness, inequalities, does not make the World a better place. Clearly we need more justice, more impartiality and independence, more balance, more equality, in other words more “Rule of Law”. We need rule based institutions and a culture of respect for legal principles and human rights – this is the only setting in which the fight against poverty can become really effective.

Thirdly, I would like to emphasize that we should have no doubts as to the centrality of Human Rights and the Rule of Law in the post 2015 Development Agenda and must proceed together on the basis of this assumption, which is reflected in several UN documents, with a view to find ways to ensure that all potential concerns as to any instrumentalization of these notions, which are crucial to sustainable development. We must make productive use of the negotiations and dispel any existing doubts. Through dialogue and mutual understanding we can achieve the elaboration of both specific goals, targets and a coherent framework based on longstanding values, which are universal and are embodied in the UN Charter, in the UN Declaration of Human Rights and in many other declarations and resolutions of the General Assembly that we all share.

These values must represent our common polar star.  We must respect what we could call the “acquis”; we shall not go back from it and build on it to make the World a better place for us and for our children and their children.