Climate Change, Sustainable Development, United Nations reforms and Bottom Trawl Fishing top the Federated States of Micronesia's agenda at the 61st United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) general debate
New York (FSM Permanent Mission to the United Nations): September 25, 2006 - The Vice President of the Federated States of Micronesia, H.E. Redley Killion, in his address to the plenary of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) continued to voice the concerns of his country on issues like climate change, sustainable development, the reform of the United Nations and the environment.
Addressing world leaders on Friday, 22 September 2006, Vice President Killion said his country, the Federated States of Micronesia, placed great importance on sustainable development and the conservation of its marine ecosystem. He said that the development of the FSM still requires overseas development assistance (ODA) from bilateral and multilateral donors alike. The Vice President also added that ODA alone is not sufficient. An active Foreign Investment and development partnerships, he said, musts be translated into concrete actions as they are critical component of sustainable development.
Citing the Mauritius Strategy as a blueprint for sustainable development of the small island developing states (SIDS), Vice President Killion, asserted that for it to be meaningful and effective, the Strategy must be mainstreamed into the all of the United Nations processes, including the United Nations Convention on Climate Convention (UNFCCC) process.
The Vice President in his statement also spoke of the vulnerabilities of small island developing states, like the FSM, to the adverse impact of climate change. "As an island nation comprised mostly of low-lying small islands with large coastal areas, the FSM is vulnerable to the adverse impact of climate change," he said. "Faced with this reality" he continued, "Micronesia will continue to speak out for concerted global action to mitigate the adverse impact of climate change." As the first countries (small island developing states) to suffer the consequences of climate change with little contribution to its causes, the Vice President pushed for those who pollute more to underwrite the costs of adaptation measures requiring national actions, particularly for small island developing states.
Following on the recent communiqué issued by the Presidents of the Federated States of Micronesia, the Marshall Islands and Palau addressing, among others, their Governments' positions against bottom trawling, Vice President Killion undertook to place the FSM's concern against this destructive fishing method on the international agenda, and call for an immediate moratorium and a total ban on deep bottom trawl fishing. He said, "The Organization must not close its eyes to the activities that result in commercial gain for only a few at the expense of the integrity of the ecosystem that supports the livelihood of our people."
In his statement, the Vice President also acknowledged the significant achievements made so far in the reform of the United Nations, and reiterated the need for the reform of the Security Council to remain a priority. He said the FSM continues to support a restructured Security Council that reflects the present international realities. He further added that a new impetus and open-mindedness to the reform process is needed to achieve institutional reform of the UN. While the Vice President did not indicate which countries the FSM supports for the permanent seats on a new Council, it is well know that the FSM favors Japan membership on an expanded Security Council, The FSM Government has also indicated its support for other countries like Germany and India.
While in New York for the UNGA session, the Vice President also had the opportunity to meet with President George Bush at a reception hosted by the US President. Other meetings were also arranged in the margin of the UNGA for the Vice President with Vice Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister of Israel Ms. Tzipi Livni; Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Turkey Mr. Abdullah Gul; Foreign Affairs Minister of Croatia Ms. Kolinda Graber Kitarovic; Foreign Affairs Minister of Guatemala Mr. Gert Rosenthal and the U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Mr. Nicholas Burns.
Vice President Killion also had the opportunity to meet with the American Jewish Committee (AJC), the B'nai B'rith International, and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) to further cement the cordial relations with these groups. These US based groups are great supporters of the FSM Government in the US as well as with the Israeli Government.
The Vice President headed the FSM delegation to the 61st UNGA whose members included the FSM Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Masao Nakayama; Pohnpei State Governor, the Hon. Johnny David; Department of Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Mr. Kandhi Elieisar; Deputy Permanent Representative Mr. Jeem Lippwe and Second Secretary Mr. Martin Zvachula.