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General Assembly – Informal Meeting with the Candidate for the position of President of the 75th Session of the General Assembly

Statement by the Permanent Representative of Italy to the UN, Ambassador Mariangela Zappia, at the Informal Interactive Dialogue of the General Assembly with the Candidate for the position of President of the 75th session of the General Assembly: Volkan Bozkir (Turkey) —

Thank you, Mr. President, for convening this meeting. We certainly value the opportunity to interact with the candidate PGA which contributes to the dimension of transparency and democracy of our Organization. Let me say first that I align myself with the statement to be made by the European Union, and I will have some national remarks before talking on behalf of the UFC Group.

Covid-19 presents us with tremendous challenges and a completely different landscape in which to operate, but it has not changed our priorities and we are happy to listen from the new PGA that these priorities remain very strong. If anything, Covid-19 has made our objectives and our work even more pressing. It has also confirmed the need to strengthen our collective action and make it more decisive.

In this context, the role of the General Assembly will be even more crucial to promote significant advancements in the main mandates of the United Nations, and particularly on economic and social development, for the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda, and in the domain of human rights, where special attention must be devoted to women and girls. It will be necessary to pursue these objectives through the lens of the current health crisis, which poses extraordinary challenges but also provide us with the opportunity to rebuild our present and shape our future in a better and more sustainable way.

We welcome that you referred to this approach in your presentation and we trust that you would steer the works of the General Assembly towards supporting the SG’s appeal to “build back better” as the world emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Let me just touch on two issues, the importance of focusing on the need, especially in these challenging times, to ensure that everyone, especially the most vulnerable, can have access to adequate, safe, affordable and nutritious food. This is really a big priority and as Chair of the Group of Friends of Food Security and Nutrition – we will welcome the dialogue with you.
On climate change, the objective to accelerate the transition towards low carbon and resilient economies has been made even more urgent andin partnership with the United Kingdom, Italy will continue to work for a successful COP26 by mobilizing all actors.

Let me now come to the UFC message to you, Mr. President, and also a question. Covid-19 has had a profound impact on the working methods of the UN and its organs, your emphasis on ensuring business continuity is noted and appreciated. In these dire times we should enhance our commitment to make the United Nations more effective and respond to the call to strengthen multilateralism. As coordinator of the UFC Group, we believe that a significant step towards that goal would be reforming the Security Council to make it truly representative, accountable, democratic, transparent and effective. We are confident that you will pursue an inclusive path towards “a solution that can garner the widest possible political acceptance by Member States” and in that you can certainly count on our support and we would like to hear from you your point of view in this very crucial issue.

Thank you very much.