Asia’s stability, peace ‘under threat,’ UN ideals must be upheld, says Marcos
NEW YORK CITY — President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Tuesday (Wednesday Manila time) said the hard-won peace and stability in Asia is currently “under threat” due to “increasing strategic and ideological tensions,” as such, ideals of the United Nations (UN) must be upheld.
In his world debut at the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly, Marcos opened his remarks with a reference to former President Carlos P. Romulo, the first Asian leader of UN, who 77 years ago called on world leaders to make the floor the “last battlefield” for survival.
He said widening geopolitical polarities and sharpening strategic competitions are transforming the international political landscape.
The UN Charter is likewise being violated around the world, he said.
“A profound lack of trust is putting enormous strains on our multilateral system. Our very Charter is being violated around the world as we speak,” the President said in his statement at the UN high-level debate.
“In Asia, our hard-won peace and stability is under threat by increasing strategic and ideological tensions. These behoove us to uphold the ideals that led to the establishment of this parliament of nations, and to reject any attempt to deny or redefine our common understanding of these principles,” he added.
Marcos said inequalities and inequities within and among countries remain unresolved and continue to persist, which demands “urgent action.”
Among the injustices the President cited were the inequitable access for vaccines against COVID-19 during the height of the pandemic, as well as the “uneven” effect of climate change where “those who are least responsible suffer the most.”
Commitment to UN ideals
Marcos guaranteed the Philippines’ commitment to the UN ideals, citing the country’s adherence to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, which provides that differences among nations should only be resolved through peaceful ways.
He also cited the 1982 Manila Declaration, which provided the framework for the peaceful settlement of international disputes.
“By reinforcing the predictability and stability of international law, particularly the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, we provided an example of how states should resolve their differences: through reason and through right,” he said.
“These two contributions provide useful guidance for our time. For amidst the challenging global tides, an important ballast stabilizes our common vessel. That is, our open, inclusive, and rules-based international order that is governed by international law and informed by the principles of equity and of justice,” he added.
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