Thank you Madam President,
I join earlier speakers in expressing appreciation to you Madam President, and to the US delegation for convening this meeting which my delegation supports.
2. The initiative is timely and appropriate in seeking to shine a light on the heinous practice of human trafficking increasingly perpetrated by violent extremist groups such as Da’esh, Boko Haram and the Lord’s Resistance Army, among others.
3. The fact that such deplorable acts occur increasingly frequently in the context of conflict situations constitute a clear and present threat to international peace and security.
4. As such, it merits closer scrutiny and concerted action not only by this Council, but also by the UN system and more generally, by the international community.
5. In this connection, I thank the briefers namely Deputy SG Mr. Jan Eliasson, UNODC Executive Director Mr. Yury Fedotov, Freedom Fund CEO Mr. Nick Grono, and Ms. Nadia Murad Basee Taha for their invaluable insights and perspectives which have greatly enriched this discussion.
6. For Ms. Taha, I have listened most intently to your presentation and am humbled by your grace, courage and perseverance in facing such adversity.
7. My delegation and I have been deeply moved by your experiences and suffering, which I am sure also holds true for other victims. We greatly appreciate your presence here today.
8. Malaysia reiterates its fullest condemnation of all acts of intolerance, intimidation and violence in situations armed conflict perpetrated by terrorists/violent extremist groups, particularly acts of human trafficking where victims are subjected to slavery, torture and even murder.
9. We reject unequivocally any linkage which groups such as Da’esh and Boko Haram seek to establish between such heinous practices with precepts of Islam, which is a religion founded on peace and the dignity of the human person whether woman, man or child. On that note, Malaysia is pleased to join the Council’s consensus and welcomes the adoption of S/PRST/2015/25.
10. We believe that the PRST represents a concrete first step by Council in recognising the international peace and security dimension of human trafficking while at the same time, underscoring the need to take coordinated, sustained and decisive action against perpetrators. It also sits well with Council’s ongoing efforts to better coordinate implementation of its own policies and decisions in the fight against terrorism and violent extremism.
11. While emphasising the centrality and importance of respect and adherence to precepts of international human rights and humanitarian laws in this regard, another equally key component is the better integration or coordinaton of efforts undertaken under the framework of international criminal law, specifically UNTOC and its Palermo Protocol.
12. In responding to the call in the concept note for concrete, action-oriented discussion, I wish to share the following 3 proposals:
12.1. With a view to addressing the scourge of human trafficking in a comprehensive and wholistic manner, we stress the importance of putting in place reintegration or re-insertion activities/programmes, especially for ‘liberated’ women and children not only to protect them from re-victimization and stigmatisation but also to enable them to believe that there is hope after victimhood;
12.2. While mindful of the context of conflict in which the kind of human trafficking currently being discussed occurs, we would stress the importance of States subscribing to and implementing instruments such as the Palermo Protocol which include provisions on measures for physical, psychological and social recovery of victims of human trafficking; and
12.3. Improving coordination with existing initiatives, for example mainstreaming the outcomes envisioned in the PRST in the work of the Council’s Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict which by virtue of resolution 2225 is also paying greater attention to the issue of abduction and kidnapping of children in conflict situations. Further linkages could be made with the work of the 1267/1989 Committee and other relevant sanctions committees.
13. To conclude, Malaysia believes that TIP poses a real threat to many countries. Indeed, due to its location and relative political and economic stability, Malaysia has had to contend with the issue of human trafficking for quite some time now.
14. It is a multifaceted problem which requires extensive coordination and cooperation from all sides including governments, multilateral partners, civil society and other relevant interlocutors.
15. Given the complexity and cross-cutting nature of human trafficking and related issues, political will at the national, regional and international levels is a major factor in determining whether tangible and sustained results or improvements could be achieved.
16. In this regard, the Council is well placed to continue making strong, unified pronouncements; backed up by equally effective policy decisions and measures in unequivocally demanding for accountability and for denying impunity on the part of perpetrators.
I thank you, Madam President.
Your Excellency Senator John Kerry
United States Secretary of State,
Your Excellencies Ministers and Deputy Ministers,
I wish to thank the Secretary-General for his briefing. We are of the view that by bringing the Vienna ISSG process to New York, non-participating Council members are able to substantively engage on issues concerning the situation in Syria. This is an important step in ensuring and cementing Council’s unity of purpose and vision on the way forward for Syria and we would have preferred to have more time for consultations.
2. That the international community has a strong desire to see an end to the conflict in Syria cannot be doubted.
3. The cost in terms of human lives and destruction of property of the Syrian conflict to date is simply staggering. Such suffering and misery must end now. It is for this primary reason that Malaysia joined consensus on resolution 2254.
4. We support resolution 2254’s aim of building upon the vision and principles of the Geneva Communiqué and the Vienna Statements; embodying the collective will of the international community to bring about a peaceful and sustainable resolution to the Syrian conflict. In this context, my delegation expresses deep appreciation to Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura for his untiring facilitation which we fully support.
5. Now in its fifth year, the Syrian conflict continues to be a litany of horrific human rights abuses and violations and most notoriously, for violations of international humanitarian law through use of toxic chemicals as weapons and indiscriminate attacks against civilians perpetrated by parties to the conflict.
6. The Syrian people are tormented further by Da’esh, Al Nusra Front and other terrorist groups and violent extremists, exacerbated by the unprecedented influx of foreign terrorist fighters.
7. The Syrian government must accept that it has the primary responsibility and obligation to protect its own people in accordance with established international law, international humanitarian law and international human rights law.
8. We reaffirm the demand on all parties to cease all indiscriminate attacks against civilians and to cease targeted attacks on civilian infrastructure. We reaffirm condemnation of continued use of barrel bombs, aerial bombings and artillery shelling against civilians.
9. At the same time, Malaysia remains deeply concerned that despite the clear demand for cooperation stipulated in resolutions 2139, 2165 and 2191, delivery of humanitarian assistance remains a huge problem. All parties to the conflict, particularly the Syrian authorities must do more to demonstrate full and effective compliance with those resolutions.
10. Only through the peaceful resolution of the conflict could the dire and deteriorating humanitarian situation in Syria begin to be meaningfully addressed, making it all the more urgent.
11. On this note, Malaysia acknowledges the role of Syria’s neighbours particularly Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey for their steadfast resilience and for their hospitality in sheltering and caring for the millions fleeing the humanitarian catastrophe in Syria, despite facing enormous capacity and resource constraints.
12. A fundamental element of any proposed peace process must include the implementation of a nationwide ceasefire. We are pleased that this requirement, including modalities for implementation, is explicitly outlined in 2254.
13. The preservation of Syria’s unity, independence, territorial integrity and secular character are key factors in ensuring acceptance of any proposed political process or plan by the Syrian people. No amount of encouragement, persuasion or pressure would be effective without the political buy-in of the Syrian people.
14. In this connection, we call upon the Syrian government representatives and representatives of the opposition to spare no effort to ensure that the proposed talks shall take place in early January 2016.
15. While noting that there are a number of contentious issues that have yet to be addressed or agreed upon, we nevertheless call on all parties to continue to dialogue constructively and further narrow down differences with a view to finding mutually acceptable solutions towards ending the conflict.
16. In concluding, my delegation reiterates that there can be no military solution to the Syrian conflict. The future of Syria must be determined through an inclusive Syrian-led and Syrian-owned political process. The Syrian government, the opposition parties and the Syrian people cannot afford to let this opportunity pass.
17. We believe that this Council has an obligation to support initiatives such as the ISSG or any other initiative which seeks to resolve the conflict in Syria through peaceful means. In this regard, we look forward to the full and effective implementation of resolution 2254 by all concerned parties.
I thank you, Mr. President.
His Excellency Mr. Jacob Lew,
United States Treasury Secretary and President of the Security Council for December,
ladies and gentlemen,
1. I join other Council members in thanking you Mr. President and the US delegation for convening this meeting which Malaysia fully supports.
2. I wish to acknowledge the presence of my counterparts around the table which I believe, signals the measure of our collective resolve to combat the scourge of terrorism, particularly its financing aspects.
3. I wish to also express appreciation to His Excellency Mr. Ban ki-Moon, UN Secretary-General and Mr. Jay Yoon Shin, President of the Financial Action Task Force for their respective briefings on the issue at hand.
4. I wish to echo and reinforce the sentiments by earlier speakers particularly with regard to the need for additional measures to further isolate the terrorist entity Da’esh or ISIL from the international financial system, with a view to effectively constrain and ultimately, cut-off their sources of funding.
5. Malaysia strongly condemns the multiple terrorist attacks perpetrated by Da’esh and their affiliates including the most recent attacks in Paris, Beirut, Mali and the Sinai.
6. Malaysia strongly rejects the warped ideology of Da’esh. We fully reject any attempt on their part to link such ideology with Islam. Islam is a religion of peace, compassion, moderation and justice, and tolerant to all culture and religion.
7. Too many innocent people have paid the price of terrorism and the international community needs to step up and do more. These heinous attacks reaffirm the need for all countries to stand united and firm against terrorism. We believe the UN and other multilateral framework provides the best platform for a coordinated and sustained action.
8. It is on this basis that Malaysia fully supports the present initiative by both Russian Federation and the United States and we welcome the unanimous adoption of resolution 2253, which we have co-sponsored.
9. Malaysia welcomes the comprehensive coverage of the new resolution, to further focus the UN’s longstanding 1267/1989 Al-Qaida sanctions regime on evolving terrorist threat. This new resolution covers all aspects of member states obligations with regard to establishing the necessary legal framework for criminalizing of terrorism financing and to operationalize terrorism financing sanctions through the listing and delisting process.
10. On the domestic front, Malaysia has adopted a comprehensive framework that criminalizes terrorism financing and money laundering. Punishment for terrorism financing under Section 130N of the Penal Code carries severe penalties, amongst others, of up to 30 years of imprisonment. Terrorism financing offence is also provided under the Anti-Money Laundering, Anti-Terrorism Financing and Proceeds of Unlawful Activities Act 2001.
11. In June 2015, Malaysia underwent the Mutual Evaluation Exercise. Amongst others, the exercise highlights Malaysia strong determination in compliance with the FATF standards with our strong legal and regulatory framework for combating terrorism financing.
12. Malaysia’s legal framework for targeted financial sanction against terrorism provides strong tools to identify terrorist networks and take steps to freeze terrorist assets. The regime against terrorism is administered robustly and is well implemented to a large extent for UNSCRs 1267.
13. Malaysia is well placed to adopt and implement the proposals contained in the new resolution. Our comprehensive National Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Financing of Terrorism Act Strategic Plan includes measures such as engaging with the private sector on terrorism financing issues, and implementing necessary measures.
14. Malaysia’s financial regulators and compliance officers constantly exchange views and share information on issues relating to the implementation of anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism with our regional and international counterparts. We constantly work to identify key Da’esh threats including the trends and modus operandi of terrorism financing, enhance investigation techniques as well as conduct specialized training in relation to typologies, investigations and new areas.
15. The threat of international terrorism has increased with the terrorists’ capabilities to manipulate the various technological innovations of our time.
16. Hence, it is imperative that Member States resolve to undertake further multilateral and high priority measures to combat terrorist financing. Our experts will have to continuously work together to address the defining and urgent challenges arising from this threat.
17. The international community needs to be vigilant of the terrorist financing activities. Concerted efforts are urgently needed not only to adopt and implement the new resolution but to also renew our commitment to carry out these measures conscientiously to counter this challenge.
18. In conclusion, Mr. President, Malaysia joins other Council members in urging all Member States to continue to take appropriate measures to counter radicalisation and violent terrorism in all forms and manifestations that lead to terrorism, financing, recruitment and mobilization of individuals into terrorist groups.
I thank you, Mr. President.
I join other Council members in thanking Ambassador Oyarzun Marchesi of Spain, in his capacity as Chair of the 1737 Committee for his briefing to the Council. I wish to also take this opportunity to commend and express my delegation’s appreciation to the Chair and his team for their able stewardship of the Committee.
2. Against the background of the historic breakthrough and progress on resolving questions related to Iran’s nuclear programme, the work of the Committee and its panel of experts remains of interest to the Council.
3. Looking ahead, we are of the view that the work of the Committee’s Panel of Experts (POE) should progressively include more activities on outreach to all UN states and interested partners and stakeholders to explain and clarify provisions of the Joint Comprehensive CPOA.
4. Alongside other Council members, we understand that since the conclusion of the JCPOA and the subsequent adoption of resolution 2231 last July, the Committee and its mandate remains in place until the “Implementation Day”, as stipulated in the JCPOA.
5. In this connection, Malaysia notes the findings and conclusions by the Committee’s panel of experts on alleged violations of the 1737 regime, as outlined in the Chair’s report.
6. We would urge caution and prudence when deliberating on this issue and reaffirm commitment to work constructively with other Council members while fully mindful of the need to preserve Council’s unity on this issue.
7. At the same time, Malaysia takes this opportunity to reaffirm the call on all concerned parties to continue engaging and working constructively with the Committee, including on resolving outstanding issues and questions.
8. Positive cooperation and sustained engagement in this regard would in our view, build further confidence and pave the way for a smooth transition to the processes envisioned under the JCPOA.
9. The Chair’s last briefing in September came at a time when the IAEA was reviewing the structural framework in place to ensure that Iran arrives at completion of the initial steps as outlined in resolution 2231. In this regard, we welcome the IAEA’s preliminary report on Iran’s implementation of the roadmap.
10. With regard to implementation, we welcome and are encouraged by the cooperation and positive steps taken thus far by Iran, including on removal and storage of enrichment centrifuges, among others.
11. Additionally, we welcome the agreement reached on the redesign and reconstruction of the Arak nuclear reactor announced on 22 November.
12. While noting that some challenges remain in clarifying certain issues and questions related to Iran’s nuclear programme, Malaysia believes that positive outcome on full and timely implementation of the roadmap is still achievable, provided all parties engage earnestly and in good faith.
13. On that note, we would reaffirm the sovereign right of all countries particularly those from the developing world to pursue and develop nuclear technology for peaceful purposes with the appropriate safeguards.
14. As such, we reiterate the call upon those states with the relevant capabilities, skills and expertise to support such aspiration, in line with the principles enshrined under Article X of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
15. In concluding, Malaysia wishes to reaffirm its belief in the importance of matching progress on nuclear non-proliferation with similar progress on the nuclear disarmament side.
16. Stalled efforts seen in recent years towards this end remains a cause of concern, particularly for non-nuclear weapons states.
17. We urge renewed commitment and action, particularly by the nuclear weapons states towards achieving the aim of a nuclear weapons free world.
I thank you, Madam President.
1. I wish to welcome Special Representative Zahir Tanin and to thank him for his first briefing to the Council. Malaysia looks forward to work closely with Ambassador Tanin, in support of the works of UNMIK.
2. I also welcome First Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Serbia Ivica Dacic, and Ambassador Vlora Çitaku of Kosovo, back to New York, and thank them both for their statements.
3. Malaysia is pleased with the milestones achieved by Kosovo during the reporting period, including the signing of the Stabilization and Association Agreement with the EU last month. We sincerely hope that the implementation of the agreement would bring stability and prosperity to the people of Kosovo, via good governance, the rule of law, and socio-economic reforms.
4. Malaysia also welcomes the progress made by Kosovo towards the normalisation of its relations with its neighbours, especially the package of agreements reached by the Prime Ministers of Serbia and Kosovo – facilitated by the EU – on 25 August in Brussels.
5. We also commend the agreement signed between Kosovo and Montenegro to delineate their borders.
6. We are however, concerned about the violent protests by opposition parties who are against the package of agreements and the territorial delineation agreement with Montenegro. We call on the relevant parties to resolve their differences via dialogue and engagement, rather than resorting to the use of violence and intimidation to achieve their political ends.
7. Malaysia commends the Assembly of Kosovo for adopting constitutional amendment and laws to enable the establishment of the Specialist Court to try cases arising from the findings of the EU Special Investigative Task Force. This significant progress reflects the political will and commitment by the leaders in Kosovo to ensure accountability and to promote closure and reconciliation.
8. In view of the challenges faced by the region and the world in combatting terrorism, we applaud the adoption of the five-year strategy by the Government of Kosovo for the prevention of violent extremism and radicalization in September. The strategy and its action plan reflect the strong commitment by the government in addressing transnational challenges to counter violent extremism.
9. With regard to Kosovo’s application to UNESCO, we are encouraged by the overwhelming support for Kosovo last week, despite falling short of three votes for the application to succeed.
10. Malaysia was supportive of Kosovo’s membership in UNESCO as it would lead to further assistance and funding for culture and education in Kosovo. We also believe that it could ensure adequate international protection for religious and cultural sites in the country.
11. Despite the setback, we urge the Kosovo authorities to remain steadfast in their commitment to preserve and protect cultural and religious heritage sites and to engage in dialogue with the relevant communities to address issues of mutual concerns.
12. In concluding, Malaysia stressed the need for all parties in Kosovo to intensify efforts towards national reconciliation between the various ethnicities and religions, and to ensure respect for human rights. We will continue to support Kosovo towards this end.
13. I join my other colleagues in reaffirming support for UNMIK, which continues to play a key role in promoting security and stability in Kosovo. We also commend the the OSCE, the Kosovo Force, and EULEX for their immense contribution towards peace and stability in Kosovo.
I thank you, Mr. President.
I would like to thank High Representative Valentin Inzko for his briefing and for his comprehensive reports to the Council, including the Special Report of 4 September.
2. Listening to his latest update on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, I can’t help but feel that despite the voluminous work and publications on the horrors of war, the lessons of war and human tragedies appeared to have been ignored.
3. Twenty years ago this month, the conflicting parties in the Balkans war signed the Dayton peace agreement. The agreement was brokered and guaranteed by key members of the international community, endorsed by this Council and subsequently upheld in various Security Council resolutions.
4. The peace agreement ended a devastating war which saw an unprecedented level of genocide and ethnic cleansing in Europe since the Second World War. Since then, Bosnia and Herzegovina has gone through much progress, reflecting the achievements of peace-building by the UN, in partnerships with regional organisations. The international community had invested much to rebuild the country.
5. Unfortunately, twenty years on, the progress made by Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as the Balkans region, seems far from irreversible.
6. Malaysia is deeply concerned about the direct challenges posed by the Republika Srpska to the Dayton peace agreement, in clear violations of its international commitment. Last April, the President of the Republika Srpska declared that his political party would call for a referendum to secede from Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2018, if the party’s demands relating to redistributing competencies between levels of governments are not met.
7. In another alarming development, last July, the Republika Srpska National Assembly decided to hold a referendum this coming weekend, with the aim of challenging the authority of the High Representative, the rule of law and the judiciary of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Such a decision is contrary to the country’s Constitution and the Dayton peace agreement.
8. In addition, the President of the Republika Srpska continued to make irresponsible statements denying genocide in Srebrenica during the reporting period, in spite of the decisions by the ICJ and the ICTY.
9. As we may recall from the previous reports of the High Representative, secessionist and nationalistic rhetoric by the Republika Srpska politicians is not something new and has been increasing in the past years. However, the recent decisions adopted by the Republika Srpska authorities have effectively taken the matter to a new disturbing level, and thus far, constitute the gravest violations of the Dayton peace agreement and raise serious doubts about the future of the region.
10. We strongly urge the Republika Srpska authorities to respect the country’s Constitution, various UNSC resolutions and the Dayton peace agreement, and cease from proceeding with the referendum on 15 November and renounce its divisive politics and secessionist agenda to avoid further destabilising the region.
11. Earlier today, the Council unanimously voted on Resolution 2247 to renew the mandate for the EU-led multinational stabilisation force for another year. Malaysia welcomes the renewal of authorisation for EUFOR Althea and the unity shown, once again, by the Council on the matter. However, we regret the fact that several key elements of the previous resolutions have been removed or watered down from Resolution 2247.
12. In particular, Malaysia views it more important now than ever for the Council to reaffirm its commitment to the Dayton peace agreement and its support for the Office of the High Representative, in view of the worrying developments on the ground.
13. We reiterate the need to fully implement the 5+2 (five plus two) agenda as condition for closure of the Office of the High Representative. Until then, Malaysia reaffirms its strong support for the Office of the High Representative, as laid down in the Dayton peace agreement and upheld in various Council resolutions. Verbal attacks and personal insults against the High Representative and OHR staff are unacceptable and must immediately cease.
14. Malaysia takes note of the positive developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina during the reporting period. We welcome the increase in exports, foreign trade and growth projections for 2015, as well as the country’s improvement in credit and business ratings. We also look forward to the country’s upcoming membership in the World Trade Organization, which will further boost foreign trade and investment.
15. Malaysia underlines the need for the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina to remain steadfast in its reform agenda, particularly to address unemployment, to fight corruption, and to strengthen the rule of law.
16. We hope to see political stability return to the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, after the collapse of the governing coalition in May. Despite the political uncertainties in the entity, we commend the Federation authorities for adopting the new Labor Law under its Reform Agenda.
17. Malaysia also takes note of the priority accorded by the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina on European integration as a cornerstone in its foreign policy towards achieving peace, stability and progress. In this regard, we welcome the advancement made by the country towards this aim, especially the entry into force of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU in June.
18. In concluding, Malaysia reaffirms its commitment to the independence, sovereignty, national unity and territorial integrity of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in line with the Dayton peace agreement and previous UNSC resolutions.
19. We reiterate our unwavering commitment in contributing towards the country’s nation-building, reconciliation and economic progress. Malaysia has long supported Bosnia and Herzegovina in its re-construction efforts, and will continue to do so, especially in the areas of trade, investment, education, as well as technical and defence cooperation programmes.
20. We urge all peoples to create a common space to continue building Bosnia and Herzegovina for a better future. This should be done through exercising collective responsibility and intensifying efforts towards national reconciliation and socio-economic reforms to ensure peace and stability, in the long-term interest of the country and the region.
I thank you, Mr. President.
Thank you Mr. President,
Through you, I wish to express my delegation’s appreciation to His Excellency Mr. Omar Abdi-Rashid Ali Sharmarke, Prime Minister of the Federal Republic of Somalia for his presence and for his briefing which we have heard with much interest.
2. I wish to also thank Ms. Susanna Malcorra, Chef de Cabinet to the Secretary-General, SRSG Nicholas Kay and Ambassador Tete Antonio, Permanent Observer for the African Union for their respective briefings, which were informative and helpful.
3. I take this opportunity to also pay tribute to the tireless dedication and efforts of the men and women serving in Somalia under the UN banner and in AMISOM. We honour their bravery, sacrifice and selfless service alongside that of the Somali national security forces.
4. The unflagging commitment and sacrifices rendered in providing support and assistance to the Government and people of Somalia is a shining example of cooperation between the United Nations and the African Union, fully in line with the highest ideals of the United Nations as enshrined in the Charter.
5. Your presence here today demonstrates the United Kingdom’s commitment to Somalia particularly in its development and transition towards political and economic stability; to lasting peace and security in the country and of the region as a whole.
6. Taking into account Somalia’s troubled history, its achievement to date of many significant milestones in building a democratic and politically inclusive state bodes well for the future.
7. We are pleased to note and commend the strong commitment and ongoing support provided by a multitude of international partners and stakeholders towards entrenching democratic norms, good governance including on management of public finances, justice and rule of law, respect for human rights as well as in addressing the acute humanitarian and development needs of the country.
8. As a current member of this Council, Malaysia has participated actively in ongoing deliberations on how best we could collectively provide the necessary assistance and support needed by Somalia, while fully mindful of the need to ensure that such efforts remain fully Somali owned and led.
9. Alongside resolution 2245 just adopted, Council had this year alone adopted resolutions 2244, 2232 and 2221 attesting to the comprehensive and high level of Council’s attention on Somalia.
10. Such attention is not only appropriate, but is absolutely critical towards ensuring Somalia’s continued positive trajectory and towards maintaining international peace and security, particularly in the Horn of Africa region.
11. In this connection, we are heartened that Somalia’s state formation processes, including the establishment and operationalisation of state or regional administrations could be concluded in 2015, paving the way for realisation of Vision 2016.
12. As such, we would urge all parties to conclude the necessary arrangements for an inclusive, transparent and credible electoral process.
13. We are also pleased to note that notable progress has also been made on women’s political participation and leadership at national and local levels. We hope that efforts to redress gender imbalance in political representation could be sustained.
14. We are confident that with the full commitment and determination of all leaders and relevant actors at the national level, coupled with support from international and regional partners, further key political and developmental milestones could be achieved.
15. Looking ahead, Malaysia believes that future UN engagement with Somalia should more closely involve the UN’s peacebuilding architecture. With the support of the UK, we were pleased to have convened an Informal Interactive Dialogue of the Council with Somali government representatives, the PBC and UN system actors during Malaysia’s presidency last June.
16. We are convinced that there is much scope for enhancing complementarity between the Council and the PBC, including on Somalia.
17. While noting the many significant and positive gains made thus far, one key challenge which threatens to derail progress achieved to date is the prevailing security threat. At the forefront of such threat is Al-Shabaab.
18. While significant headway has been made in degrading Al-Shabaab’s capabilities, they retain significant ability to inflict death and destruction, as seen from the latest attack on the Sahafi Hotel early this month.
19. We wish to stress that the fight against terrorism cannot be won through force of arms alone. As such we continue to advocate a comprehensive strategy of “winning hearts and minds”, not only of perpetrators but perhaps more critically, of their support bases from the civilian population. At this delicate stage of transition, it is important that public trust and confidence in national security institutions and actors be maintained.
20. Malaysia believes that national and local level political leaders, working in close coordination and collaboration with UNSOM, AMISOM and the Somali national security forces are best placed to take the lead in this regard.
21. A related area of concern is the protection of civilians. We remain concerned by reports of allegations of continuing human rights violations and abuses particularly against women and children. We urge the relevant authorities to investigate such allegations and ensure accountability of perpetrators.
22. At the same time, we greatly appreciate the on-going efforts by UN actors on the ground, particularly UNICEF and UNSOM in promoting awareness and mainstreaming the issue of child protection in the policies and activities of the Somali National Army. We commend the Federal Government’s commitment and determination to end and prevent recruitment and use of children by national security forces.
23. The humanitarian situation in Somalia remains fragile, due partly to the volatile security situation and domestic economic challenges exacerbating the difficulty of delivering humanitarian assistance across large parts of the country. The conflict in Yemen has also placed additional stresses on the humanitarian infrastructure in Somalia.
24. Despite modest resources and capabilities, Malaysia has and continues to support and assist Somalia since the early 90s when we first contributed troops under UNOSOM II.
25. To date, Malaysia has undertaken a number of development initiatives in Somalia including projects to refurbish and upgrade existing wells as well as installing water pumps in remote areas supplying clean water to approximately 20,000 people.
26. We have also disbursed financial and in-kind contributions to schools for disabled children, IDPs and orphanages and to the Somalian National Eye Centre. Recently, Perdana Global Peace Fund Malaysian NGO initiated a micro-credit project aimed at empowering women and single mothers to start their own small businesses.
27. In line with our commitment to South-South Cooperation, Malaysia continues to offer technical assistance, including higher education scholarship to Somali nationals under the Malaysian Technical Cooperation Programme. We stand ready to consider providing tailored courses if so requested.
28. In concluding, I reaffirm Malaysia’s commitment to work closely with all Council members, the Federal Government of Somalia, the United Nations, the African Union and the international community towards lasting peace, security and development for Somalia.
I thank you, Mr. President.
His Excellency Mr. José Manuel García-Margallo,
Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Spain and President of the Security Council for the month of October,
On behalf of my delegation, I thank you Excellency, for convening and chairing this meeting. Malaysia highly values your presence here today, which clearly demonstrates the importance Spain attaches to the subject of today’s open debate.
2. I wish to also warmly recognise the Foreign Ministers of Jordan, New Zealand, and Venezuela and also thank them for their presence here today.
3. I appreciate the in-depth briefing by Deputy Secretary-General Eliasson.
4. We also associate ourselves with the statements to be delivered by Iran and Kuwait, on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement, and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation respectively.
5. The untiring efforts by the Secretary-General in his recent visit to the Middle East region in a bid to steer the parties towards peace, and to return to meaningful negotiations based on the two-state solution, is much appreciated.
6. We strongly support the goal of the two-state solution. However, we are increasingly becoming sceptical that the best way to achieve that goal is only through direct bilateral negotiations between Palestine and Israel.
7. Twenty years since Oslo, the possibility of achieving the two-state solution based on direct bilateral negotiations appears more remote than ever.
8. The continuing expansion of illegal Israeli settlements and construction of the illegal Apartheid Wall by Israel, as well as the increasing radicalism on both sides have perhaps irreparably damaged any possibility of two states to exist side-by-side in peace and security.
9. In 1947, the Trustee Power in the Middle East decided to refer the problematic Palestine Mandate to the UN, after they were severely tested and had grown weary from years of fighting a bloody guerrilla war with Jewish paramilitary organisations.
10. These organisations perpetrated terror and violence by targeting British interests and even civilian infrastructure, in their bid to achieve statehood.
11. The unwillingness of both sides, the Palestinians and the Jews to come to an agreement essentially forced the Trustee Power to resort to the UN.
12. In response, the UN General Assembly subsequently decided to partition the disputed land, creating the state of Israel.
13. Now, over six decades later, in an ironic and tragic twist of logic, the international community declares that Palestinian statehood can only be achieved through direct bilateral negotiations with Israel, the Occupying Power.
14. Furthermore, there are some of us who do not want the UN Security Council, let alone the General Assembly, to play any substantial role in realising the two-state solution.
15. If we had applied the same standard on Israel and insisted for the past 70 years that it could only come into being via direct bilateral negotiations with its Arab neighbours, would the State of Israel exist today?
16. Yet today, Palestine’s attempts to access the same legal, diplomatic and multilateral channels are derided as “unilateral and counter-productive measures” which would jeopardise the so-called “peace process".
17. If the principal players are sincere about salvaging the two-state solution, there is a serious need to do away with old thinking and habits and come up with bold actions to achieve this end, because our past approaches proved that we have miserably failed.
18. For too long now, every time violence erupts in Occupied Palestine, the approach by the international community, including this Council, is to scramble to patch up the ruins of the peace process.
19. Then, we would dangle whatever we could muster in front of the Palestinians, as a bait to pacify them, so that their frustration and anger would soon subside, in the false hope of a successful initiative.
20. Once the situation in Occupied Palestine returns to calm, the world would again forget about the plight of the Palestinians. They would continue to languish in inhumane conditions under occupation, until they lose their patience once again and the next cycle of violence erupts.
21. Albert Einstein once said: “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result”. After two decades of failed attempts, let us stop fooling ourselves that our old approach could still work.
22. It is foolhardy to wait several more decades, before we finally muster the political will and courage to do what is right and just for Palestine.
23. The majority of UN member states in this room, including those around this table had, at one time or another, fought for self-determination from colonial powers.
24. Based on our own historical struggles toward self-determination, perhaps we should step back and try to understand the message that we have been sending to the Palestinians all this while.
25. Effectively, what we have been saying to them is:
“Obey the Occupying or Colonial Power despite the grave injustice, discrimination, the lack of freedom and human rights violations done unto you;
Lay down your arms and do not fight the Occupation because doing so would amount to terrorism or anti-semitism;
Do not proceed with any legal or diplomatic means for statehood because it might anger the Occupying Power into not granting you independence;
Wait patiently for your statehood, even though the Occupying Power is changing the realities on the ground to make your statehood ultimately impossible;
and most of all, stay moderate and subservient at all times despite losing your children, babies, your parents, your spouse, and your siblings, due to the illegal targeting or disproportionate use of force by the Occupying Power, even if there is no accountability for the perpetrators.”
26. I really wonder, how many of us in this room and around this table, with our own history of legitimate struggle for self-determination, could pass the standards that we are currently insisting on the Palestinians?
27. The continuing occupation of Palestine and the systematic oppression suffered by its people serve as a powerful unifying factor that have inflamed radicalism and extremism globally.
28. We certainly do not condone the terrorism and violent extremism perpetrated by the likes of Da’esh and Al-Qaeda, who manipulate the plight and suffering of the Palestinians.
29. Having said that, can we reasonably expect the long suffering, oppressed, humiliated and subjugated Palestinian population to remain passive when all legal, political and diplomatic means of resistance have been effectively blocked for decades?
30. Even Malaysia – a non-Arab country, in a region culturally and geographically removed from the Middle East, with a moderate, majority Muslim population – is not spared from increasing radicalism due to frustration and anger at the sufferings of fellow Muslims in Palestine.
31. Since Oslo, a whole generation of Palestinians have grown into adulthood knowing only occupation, blockade, repression, and violence.
32. If the Occupation continues, we will eventually reap what we sow, and one day, we will wake up realising that peace and the two-state solution are no longer within our reach.
33. It is thus in the international community’s interest to act urgently to address the root cause of the conflict and end Israeli occupation. I wish to echo the sentiments expressed by my colleagues around the table and by the UN Secretary-General, on the need to re-establish the political horizon and to return to a meaningful peace process.
34. We strongly support and welcome all peaceful initiatives to resolve the long-standing conflict and revive the Middle East Peace Process, including the initiatives by France and New Zealand.
35. Nevertheless, Malaysia would stress the need to set a reasonable timeframe to realise the two-state solution. The Council has various tools at its disposal that it could use, to realise this aim, for the maintenance of international peace and security.
36. Malaysia also firmly supports the request by Palestine for UN protection, including by having temporary international observers in Occupied Palestine. We have numerous precedents for such UN protection to guide us in our deliberation.
37. I urge the Council start serious discussions on the request for UN protection, in close cooperation with the Secretary-General. Malaysia believes that such UN protection would provide a way forward to stem the current debilitating violence, in line with international humanitarian law, particularly the Geneva Conventions.
38. This would ensure accountability for all parties to the conflict and enforce adherence to international law, international human rights law, and various General Assembly and Security Council resolutions.
39. We are hopeful that the Council could agree on an outcome for this Open Debate that would manifest our solidarity on the gravity of the situation on the ground.
40. Should the Council continue to remain paralysed, rendering itself irrelevant as far as the Middle East Peace Process is concerned, we must be prepared to look beyond the Council for a solution. We must not give up all diplomatic efforts and let the Occupation continue in perpetuity.
41. The international community must continue to uphold the legitimate right to self-determination, which constitutes one of the very core principles of the UN when it was created 70 years ago.
42. We owe it to the Palestinian people to mobilise our political will and explore other peaceful, legal and diplomatic avenues available to us, in order to end the longest occupation in modern history.
43. If we do not act, there is no doubt that we will be condemned by history, and we will face a bleaker future.
I thank you, Mr. President.
Thank you Mr. President, for convening this urgent and important meeting.
2. I also thank ASG Zerihoun for his briefing.
3. Malaysia is gravely concerned by the provocations and escalating violence in and around the Holy Sites of the Old City of Jerusalem. We condemn in the strongest terms any and all attempts to alter the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem. Such sinister attempts are in blatant violation of numerous Security Council and General Assembly resolutions.
4. We strongly condemn all such acts of provocations, incitement and violence at the Holy Sites by all sides, which only fuels tensions and exacerbate the deteriorating security situation on the ground.
5. We strongly urge all parties to exercise restraint and uphold respect for the sanctity of the Holy Sites.
6. It should come as no surprise that the unresolved situation has culminated in the current outbreak of violence, death and destruction.
7. Time and again, the Council has been warned about the ticking time bombs in Occupied Palestine, as the Palestinian people grow increasingly desperate of being dehumanised, and suffer from daily humiliations, oppression and mistreatments, under the longest occupation in modern history. And yet, time and again, this Council has done nothing.
8. At the General Assembly, the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting Human Rights of the Palestinian People, and the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People diligently reported on various atrocities and grave violations of human rights committed by the Occupying Power, year after year for the past decades, without any effective measures being taken to address the grave injustice.
9. This has further emboldened the Occupying Power to conduct itself with greater impunity and more repressive policies.
10. In the mainstream media, we only see ludicrously one-sided and hugely distorted narrative to explain the current situation – that of Palestinian terrorists trying to kill and injure as many peace-loving Israelis as possible.
11. We do not see reports of arbitrary killings and illegal targeting of children and women by the Israeli forces and the settlers; we do not read about daily humiliations and mistreatments suffered by Palestinians at the hands of the Occupying Force; we do not even hear the words ‘occupation’ and ‘self-determination’ mentioned anywhere in the mainstream media to provide the proper context; and we do not apply the same standard of human rights in Palestine and Israel as we preach elsewhere globally.
12. Is it really surprising then that the subjugated and the oppressed chose to fight the illegal Occupier for their legitimate right to freedom and self-determination, since for far too long, all other legal, political, economic, diplomatic, and media channels have been systematically and exhaustively blocked?
13. For each time a cycle of violence erupts, with countless innocent lives including women and children tragically killed, injured and traumatised, the international community, particularly the Security Council, shares the blame for allowing the situation to persist with impunity.
14. Enough is enough. In shouldering its Charter responsibility to maintain international peace and security, Malaysia wishes to unequivocally demand for UN or international protection for the Occupied Palestinian Territory.
15. Such UN protection would prevent continuing massacres and gross violations of human rights in Occupied Palestine. It would also benefit Israelis by addressing their security concerns.
16. The call for UN protection, in line with international humanitarian law, particularly the Geneva Conventions, would ensure accountability for all parties to the conflict and enforce or monitor adherence to international law, international human rights law, and various General Assembly and Security Council resolutions to maintain peace and security in the occupied territory.
17. Such protection has numerous precedents in UN history, including in Kosovo, East Timor, Lebanon, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and even in Palestine itself.
18. The Council must not delay discussions on the proposal and Malaysia looks forward to work closely with the UN Secretary-General and other Council members in this regard.
19. In noting the statement by the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation on the reinvigorated role of the Quartet and its expanded format, we would underscore the importance of its engagement with this Council.
20. In calling for UN protection to address the current crisis, we must not lose sight of the long-term need for a final comprehensive solution to the conflict.
21. 70 years after the failure to grant self-determination for the Palestinian people, the international community has lost any pretext for a legitimate excuse to further perpetuate Israel’s occupation.
22. Delays to address the root cause of the conflict attributed to looming elections, ineffectual Quartet meetings, and half-hearted bilateral initiatives begin to appear as façades to prolong occupation and to deny justice, dignity, and freedom to the Palestinian people.
23. Meanwhile, illegal Israeli settlements continue expanding, giving rise to questions on the sincerity of Israel’s commitment to the two-state solution. In the first half of this year alone, the number of settler homes built in the West Bank had increased by 54.8%, compared to the same period last year.
24. Against the background of decades of impunity, illegal Israeli policies and practices, and systematic dehumanisation of Palestinians, we are seeing an unacceptable increase in terrorist attacks by extremist Israeli settlers.
25. We cannot deny that the continuing occupation of Palestine and the unjust oppression of its people is a powerful rallying point worldwide, which further fuelled radicalism and extremism due to the obstruction of peaceful, legal and diplomatic means of resistance.
26. Malaysia stresses the need for the Council to act urgently in view of the deteriorating situation on the ground to address the root cause of the conflict and to finally put an end to the longest occupation in modern history.
27. If we continue to turn a blind eye to the problem, there is no doubt that we will pay a much higher price in the future, which will not be in the long-term interest of Palestine, Israel and the world.
I thank you, Mr. President.
STATEMENT BY H.E. DATO’ SRI ANIFAH AMAN, MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS OF MALAYSIA AT THE UN SECURITY COUNCIL MEETING ON THE MAINTENANCE OF INTERNATIONAL PEACE AND SECURITY: SETTLEMENT OF CONFLICTS IN THE MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA AND COUNTERING THE TERRORIST THREAT IN THE REGION, NEW YORK, 30 SEPTEMBER 2015
Your Excellency Sergey Lavrov – President of the Security Council,
I thank the Russian Federation for convening this meeting. Malaysia welcomes this initiative through which we hope the Council could have constructive and fruitful discussions on the contemporary conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
2. Revisiting underlying causes connected to the seemingly intractable conflicts in the MENA region at this juncture is a timely initiative. The region and affected countries and societies are perhaps worse off today than when those conflicts began.
3. Your call for a comprehensive analysis of the causes of conflicts; for sharing and exchanging views on possible solutions; and for reaffirmation of our common commitment to counter terrorist threats in and beyond the MENA region is, I believe, a useful exercise for the Council. Although the scope is ambitious, we are fully supportive.
4. Malaysia reiterates its fullest condemnation of all acts, methods and practices of terrorism and reaffirms its commitment to combat terrorism in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and international law. We strongly reject association of terrorism with any race, culture or religion.
5. Indeed, there is no “one-size-fits-all” framework in analysing or addressing the various conflicts in the MENA region. Nevertheless, we may infer some commonalities, to better inform our common efforts in countering terrorism and violent extremism:
5.1. Firstly, due to current political and security instability, countries such as Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen are seen as ‘fertile ground’ by the terrorists. Political and security vacuum is exploited by terrorist groups to increase recruitment, expand territorial control, and smuggle in weapons. In those cases, terrorism is not the root cause of conflict but symptomatic of political instability;
5.2. Secondly, the presence of terrorist groups in those and other affected countries has deepened sectarian divisions, thereby exacerbating political and social instability. The longer such divisions fester – sowing discord and fear among the population – the longer it takes for the torn social fabric to heal. Left unchecked, this would further prolong instability and serve the terrorists’ agenda; and
5.3. Thirdly, the pre-existing situation of gross human rights violations and dire humanitarian predicament in the affected countries provides a very compelling narrative for recruitment. While the FTF (foreign terrorist fighters) phenomenon is not new, current scale of their involvement in MENA region conflicts is unprecedented.
6. Furthermore, the terrorist narrative and propaganda, particularly by Da’esh is expertly communicated at a global level through social media and messaging platforms.
7. To illustrate the pernicious nature and effects of such messaging, consider this Mr. President: in Malaysia – a multi ethnic, multi religious and multicultural country which is quite geographically distant from the MENA region – authorities have, since 2012, arrested over 100 persons suspected of linkages with Da’esh; for being or supporting FTFs.
8. As a further example, a 26-year old woman – a doctor – was reported to have left her relatively comfortable middle-class life to marry a Da’esh fighter in the middle-east whom she had never met and whose language she does not speak. She even detailed her experiences as a ‘Da’esh wife’ on social media and encouraged other young women to do the same. In a chilling tweet she said and I quote: “A life without terror is like drinking sea water. It keeps you thirsty and cause you dehydrated.”
9. Against such deeply ingrained extremism, it seems clear to me that the war must be won not necessarily through the force of arms, but through a triumph of mind, of heart and of wills.
10. At the national level, Malaysia has intensified efforts to prevent terrorist groups and cells from operating in-country, particularly for recruitment and fund-raising purposes. In November last year, the Government tabled a White Paper at Parliament on the threat posed by Da’esh and on possible responses.
11. At the same time, existing legislation has been strengthened, including on countering and preventing financing of terrorism. New legislation has also been enacted, namely the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) 2015 and the Special Measures Against Terrorism in Foreign Countries Act 2015 with a view to addressing the FTF phenomenon.
12. One key feature of POTA which I wish to share with Council concerns its provisions on rehabilitation and deradicalisation. The assumption underlying this provision is rooted in the belief that the fight against terrorism cannot be won through force or punitive measures alone.
13. On the social and education front, authorities engage closely with religious and community leaders to nip radicalisation and extremism in the bud, as well as in disseminating clear and accurate information on the true teachings of the various faiths and religions.
14. In terms of capacity for outreach, awareness-raising and research, we are fortunate to have the Southeast Asia Regional Centre for Counter-Terrorism in Kuala Lumpur. Additionally, as stated by my Prime Minister at yesterday’s Summit on countering ISIL and CVE, Malaysia is actively exploring the possibility of establishing a Regional Digital Counter-Messaging Communications Centre or RDC3.
15. Malaysia remains convinced that in the context of the situation in the Middle East, the threat posed by terrorism can be effectively addressed by the international community only if it is prepared to take a self-critical and unbiased look at the root causes of terrorism and act to redress the grievances, injustices, and gross violations of human rights.
16. We cannot allow the plight of long-suffering Palestinians living under occupation to be cynically exploited by terrorist groups in their narrative; couched in terms of “good versus evil”.
17. In our view, a just and durable solution to the situation in Palestine is long overdue. At this point in time, prolonged occupation also feeds the terrorist narrative and may also contribute to radicalisation.
18. In concluding, I reiterate Malaysia’s firm belief that in order for the Council to continue playing a constructive and positive role in conflicts in the MENA region, it must find the will to overcome differences and speak in one voice.
19. Malaysia looks forward to engaging with the Council members on the draft resolution which you spoke of earlier. Malaysia remains committed to achieving unity of purpose and of action by this Council.
I thank you, Mr. President.