HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam, Russia, and South Africa, three members of the UN Security Council, jointly held an event on December 17 (US time) to mark the 60th anniversary of the UN Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, also known as the Declaration on Decolonalisation.
The meeting, organised on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, saw the presence of ambassadors and chargé d’affaires of nearly 100 missions of UN member states. It was co-chaired by Ambassador Đặng Đình Quý, head of the Vietnamese mission to the UN, the Chargé d’affaires at the Russian mission, and the deputy head of the South African mission.
UN member states highlighted the significance of the Declaration on Decolonalisation, adopted by the UN General Assembly in Resolution 1514 in 1960, saying this declaration remains one of the most important documents of the UN to present.
They held that since its adoption, the declaration has been a source of strong support for colonial territories’ struggle and aspiration for independence and an end to colonialism, resulting in the liberation of more than 750 million people in over 80 former colonial countries in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and Oceania.
However, the member states also shared the view that had been noted at recent UN meetings that the decolonisation process has yet to complete and still has many shortcomings. In particular, there remain 17 non-self-governing territories with nearly 2 million people yet to be able to practise self-determination.
They re-affirmed the commitment to continue implementing the Declaration on Decolonialisation and promote the decolonialisation process via cooperation with relevant UN agencies.
Ambassador Quý spoke of the difficulties that Việt Nam faced and its substantial efforts during the fight for national liberation and independence, stressing the connection between the Vietnamese people’s struggle and those of other peoples around the world and the UN.
He also told the story about Nguyễn Ái Quốc, who was later known as President Hồ Chí Minh, the founding father of modern Việt Nam, sending a document detailing the claims of the Annamite people to the Versailles conference in 1919, where colonialist powers discussed colonial issues, and writing a letter to the President of the first session of the UN General Assembly in 1946 to express Việt Nam’s wish to join the UN.
Quý emphasised that Việt Nam’s path to national independence and reunification was associated with the struggles of many countries around the world, especially in Africa, noting it received strong spiritual support from many nations and international friends during this fight.
The diplomat affirmed the importance of the decolonialisation process and the exercise of countries and peoples’ right to self-determination in line with the Declaration on Decolonialisation, the UN Charter, and related resolutions.
He called on countries to enhance cooperation with relevant UN agencies to step up decolonialisation and declaration implementation in the spirit of solidarity and mutual support. — VNS