|Statement by Ambassador Zhang Yishan Deputy Permanent Representative of China to the UN on the Question of Decolonization At the Special Political and Decolonization Committee of the 57th Session of the General Assembly|
At the outset, I would like to warmly congratulate you on your election as Chairman of this Committee. My congratulations also go to other members of the Bureau. I am confident that under your outstanding leadership, this Committee will be able to complete its work with great success.
Ever since its inception, the United Nations has taken it as an important task to help the vast number of colonial countries and peoples to exercise their right to self-determination and strive for independence. Gratifying results have been achieved in this regard. Especially, in 1960, the General Assembly adopted the historic Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, which has since greatly accelerated decolonization across the world. The active participation by a large number of newly-independent countries in international affairs has also greatly enhanced the universality of the United Nations. The Chinese delegation hereby sincerely congratulates the people of Timor-Leste on their independence and warmly welcomes the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste to the family of the United Nations.
Today, the global decolonization process is still yet to be completed and the goals set by the Declaration remain unfulfilled. The Second International Decade for the Eradication of Colonialism declared by the 55th session of the General Assembly has fully demonstrated the common aspirations of all Member States to completely eradicate colonialism. We are confident that with the unremitting efforts of all Member States of the United Nations, the decolonization process will be making greater progress.
It is a lofty duty of all Member States to attach importance to the interests of people of Non-Self-Governing Territories and help them to exercise their inalienable right to self-determination in accordance with the UN Charter and relevant G.A. resolutions and to realize the goal of total eradication of colonialism around the Globe. The fulfillment of this goal also requires the joint efforts of the United Nations, the people of Non-Self-Governing Territories and the administering Powers. We call on the administering Powers to cooperate more effectively with the United Nations and people of Non-Self-Governing Territories, so as to create necessary conditions for the people of Non-Self-Governing Territories to exercise their right to self-determination.
The transmission of information concerning the Non-Self-Governing territories under Article 73 e of the UN charter, the dissemination of information on decolonization, regional seminars on this topic and visiting missions to Non-Self-Governing Territories are all effective means to make known the will of the people of Non-Self-Governing Territories. We hope the administering Powers will enter into closer cooperation with the United Nations, ensure fully that people of Non-Self-Governing Territories know all their rights, provide in a timely manner necessary information for such purposes and accept United Nations visiting missions to territories under their administration. We are pleased to note that in the past year, positive progress has been achieved in the cooperation between the Special Committee and the Delegation of New Zealand on the Tokelau issue. The UN mission has done field studies in Tokelau, during which it conducted extensive contacts with the local authorities and people and got a better understanding of the situation on the ground.
Most of the present Non-Self-Governing territories are small ones with a very fragile environment for development. Therefore, we call on the administering Powers to take effective measures to realize a well-balanced development of the society, economy, culture and education in those territories while protecting natural and human resources there.
The Chinese Government has consistently supported the efforts of people of Non-Self-Governing Territories to exercise their right to self-determination. The Chinese Delegation will, as always, participate actively in the UN's work in this field and closely cooperate with other Member States in our unremitting efforts to fulfill the mission as laid down in the UN Charter and the Declaration.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.