Việt Nam's election to UN Human Rights Council a testament to its tireless efforts: Foreign Minister

October 12, 2022 - 19:00
"In Việt Nam, the Party and State consistently identify the people as the centre, the actor, the most important resource, and the purpose of the developmental process," Minister of Foreign Affairs Bùi Thanh Sơn said.
Việt Nam's delegation at the voting sesion. VNA/VNS Photo

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HÀ NỘI — Minister of Foreign Affairs Bùi Thanh Sơn has hailed the election of Việt Nam to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for the 2023-25 tenure as just reward for the "tireless efforts" the country has made in fulfilling its international human rights commitments.

He was addressing local media on Wednesday after Việt Nam was elected to the council for the second time on October 11 at the 77th session of the UN General Assembly in New York.

"In Việt Nam, the Party and State consistently identify the people as the centre, the actor, the most important resource, and the purpose of the developmental process," FM Sơn said. "This well-founded view has been set out in detail in Việt Nam's socio-economic development plans and strategies and is also institutionalized under the Constitution and the law."

He added that human rights and citizens' political, civil, economic, cultural and social rights are recognised, respected, protected and ensured under the Constitution and the law.

As an active and responsible member of the international community, Việt Nam always "seriously and fully implements its international commitments on human rights, and makes all efforts to advance human rights domestically and internationally," he noted.

Việt Nam successfully fulfilled its UNHRC membership between 2014-16 and actively promoted dialogue and cooperation in this process. The diplomat remarked that such efforts left positive impressions and are highly regarded by the international community.

According to Minister Sơn, Việt Nam's election to the UNHRC for 2023-25 is very important in three ways.

Firstly, it helps reaffirm Việt Nam's sound and consistent position and policy on the special importance of the human factor and on how best Việt Nam can harness the human element in national development. This view holds that economic growth must be closely linked with cultural and human development, and social progress and justice must be upheld. It is also a testament to Việt Nam's immense achievements in upholding the peoples' rights, particularly in championing human and civic rights according to the Constitution and the law.

Second, it contributes to implementing the foreign policy line set by the 13th National Party Congress in 2021. The policy calls for the elevation of multilateral diplomacy to a higher level, active participation and proactive engagement at instrumental multilateral forums of strategic significance as a channel to further enhance Việt Nam's global standing and prestige. Việt Nam's election to the UNHRC is testimony to Việt Nam's tireless efforts to fulfil its international human rights commitments. More than that, it is also a confirmation of the international community's support, trust and expectation for Việt Nam, given its important and responsible contributions to advancing human rights worldwide.

This event is all the more significant as this year marks the 45th anniversary of Việt Nam's accession to the UN. This will be an excellent opportunity for Việt Nam to continue contributing to the joint efforts of the UN and the international community in protecting and advancing the universal values of human rights, striving together for peace, national independence, democracy, and development cooperation and social progress.

Third, Việt Nam's active participation in and contributions to the UNHRC will broadcast a strong message of a peace-loving Việt Nam that champions humanistic and humanitarian values. It will also be instrumental in helping Việt Nam's ministries and agencies at all levels, its people and international friends gain a more complete, accurate and deeper understanding of Việt Nam's position, policy and achievements in human rights. In addition, it enables Việt Nam to call on the support, advice, and experience sharing from the UN and other international partners to uphold better human rights, civic rights, and the people's right to mastery in the new national development.

Việt Nam's priorities

Addressing the questions regarding Việt Nam's priorities and agenda directions as a council member, Sơn said Việt Nam would continue to work closely with fellow member states and make substantial contributions to the common work of the UNHRC.

These include advancing the dialogue and international cooperation in the spirit of mutual respect and understanding and promoting human rights by considering the particular conditions and legitimate needs and interests of countries, especially developing countries.

"We will join hands with other member states to advance initiatives and solutions for the right to live in peace, right to development, rights of vulnerable groups, gender equality, right to access to healthcare, education and employment, and response to climate change and epidemics, among many others. Furthermore, in its 2023-25 term, Việt Nam will perform its reporting obligation under the 4th Cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) and other international conventions on promoting civil and political rights, fighting discrimination, and championing the rights of women and persons with disabilities," the diplomat noted.

With the consensus and close coordination within the entire political system under the Party's leadership and the State's administration, alongside the support of the international community, Sơn believes that Việt Nam will undoubtedly fulfil its mandate at the UNHRC.

"We will work alongside the international community to build a world of peace, where all people, states and nations may benefit from the fruits of development and social progress and where no one is left behind," he concluded. — VNS

Speaking to Vietnam News Agency reporters, State Minister for Bangladesh's Foreign Affairs Shahriar Alam congratulated the Vietnamese Government and people on the election result.Bangladesh and Việt Nam have close bilateral relations. He said both countries were UNHRC members and had reached a consensus on many important issues, such as climate change response or migration.He said Việt Nam and Bangladesh would continue strengthening cooperation to make more contributions to the UNHRC.The challenges will be even greater in the current changing world order than in the previous term. Minister Shahriar Alam said the two countries must quickly adapt and understand each other better.He also emphasised the importance of understanding among countries and regions.Human rights is a broad field closely related to economic development. Việt Nam and Bangladesh share common features in terms of culture and have gone through years of brutal wars to gain independence and freedom. He said that the two countries are in a position to tell the world that peace is the central value, the common aspiration of people and the foundation for the country when making decisions.Veeramalla Anjaiah, a senior researcher from the Centre for Southeast Asian Studies (CSEAS) in Indonesia, said Việt Nam's election to the UNHRC for the 2023-2025 tenure is international recognition of Việt Nam's commitment to respecting and protecting human rights.In an interview with the Vietnam News Agency, he said that Việt Nam is a peaceful and stable country, with its Government always committed to protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms at home.As a responsible nation, Việt Nam supports the protection of human rights and dignity worldwide and always participates in such efforts at the UN and other international organisations, he added.Stressing that, as well as nine ASEAN member countries, many Asian, African and Latin American nations also voted for Việt Nam, Anjaiah said Vietnamese people enjoy many freedoms and human rights. VNS