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Deputy PM, FM Minh's statement at 46th Session of UN Human Rights Council

VGP – As COVID-19 has left no country untouched, Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh said that international solidarity and cooperation is critical to help us rise above challenges and move forward.

February 22, 2021 7:24 PM GMT+7

Minh stressed the point in his statement delivered at the High-level Segment of the 46th Regular Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council. The following is his full statement.

Madam President,

Ladies and gentlemen,

I am honored to address this 46th Session of the Council.

Looking back, 2020 has been the most difficult year in many decades. The COVID-19 pandemic has claimed the lives of millions, and affected the well-being of billions around the world. It has strained public health and social security systems of all countries.

And as Secretary-General Guterres put it, the pandemic has been “triggering and exacerbating various human rights challenges”.

This should not, however, be a cause for despair. We can already see beams of hope. The world is moving towards a “new normal”. The global economy is seeing signs of gradual recovery. Vaccines have been developed and made available for public use in record time. Digital transformation and application of science and technology, particularly information technology, help provide solutions to challenges in all aspects of human life.

The pandemic has also offered the world a new pathway to “build forward better”, based on adaptability, innovation, cooperation and solidarity at local, national and global levels.

Madam President,

Viet Nam believes strongly that ensuring a safe society against epidemics like Covid-19 is the best way to ensure that each and every member of the society can fully enjoy their human rights.

We continue to put emphasis on the protection and promotion of all human rights and fundamental freedoms of our people, even in this most difficult of times.

Viet Nam has tackled the COVID-19 pandemic head on, putting the people at the center of all its efforts.

Prompt and determined actions have been taken to control the outbreaks to protect the health and safety of the people as a matter of top priority. Efforts are also made to maintain economic growth and social welfare, to leave no one behind.

Thanks to our whole-of-government approach and the overwhelming support and solidarity of our people, COVID-19 has largely been controlled in Viet Nam.

The economy continued to grow at almost 3% in 2020. And timely support has been given to businesses and people affected by the pandemic, especially vulnerable groups like the elderly, women, children and people with disabilities.

What we have experienced and achieved clearly indicate that efforts to ensure human rights must take into account the historical, political, social and developmental particularities of each country.

Madam President,

COVID-19 has left no country untouched. No one can be safe until everyone is safe. As the international community, we are all in this together. Therefore, international solidarity and cooperation is critical to help us rise above challenges and move forward.

Viet Nam is grateful for the valuable support from our partner countries, international organizations, non-governmental organizations and people around the world. On its part, Viet Nam has provided medical masks and supplies to support more than 50 countries and international partners in their response to the pandemic.

As proposed by Viet Nam, the United Nations General Assembly adopted by consensus a resolution proclaiming December 27 as the International Day of Epidemic Preparedness to help raise awareness on the importance of preventing and responding to epidemics.

Desiring to further contribute effectively to joint efforts in protecting and promoting human rights, Viet Nam presented its candidature for membership of the Human Rights Council for the term 2023-2025. We are honored to have been endorsed as the ASEAN candidate for this post, and look forward to the support from all UN Member States.

We are confident that together we can overcome that challenges posed by the current pandemic and build a better future for all.

Thank you./.