Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah, Minister of Foreign Affairs, led here yesterday the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's delegation to the opening session of 43rd Human Rights Council in Geneva.
In his speech, Prince Faisal affirmed that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is witnessing a lot of positive developments in several sectors and achieved pioneering reform steps centered on the people and development, stressing that the issuance of several legislations and policies is to strengthen the legal framework for a protection of human rights and a qualitative development with regard to the rights and empowerment of women, in particular.
He added that the Kingdom Vision 2030 represents the basis for the starting point for these developments and reform steps, which include development programs in many economic and social sectors which make the Kingdom a successful and pioneer model in the world at all levels.
"The progress led by the Kingdom in the fields of women's empowerment and efforts to strengthen her role in line with the Kingdom Vision 2030 in addition to conducting important amendments in the systems and executive regulations is a clear reflection confirmed by the World Bank's Women, Business and the Law 2020 report dated on January 15, 2020. This report asserted that the Kingdom made a qualitative leap and topped the most advanced countries among (190) countries. The Kingdom will continue its comprehensive reform process to achieve the goals of the Kingdom Vision 2030," Prince Faisal said.
He pointed out that the Kingdom will preside over the works of the Group of Twenty (G20) Summit 2020 under the slogan "Realizing Opportunities of the 21st Century for All", adding that "the group will focus on three key aims: Empowering People through creating the conditions in which all people, particularly women and youth, can live, work and thrive; Safeguarding the Planet through fostering collective efforts to safeguard our global commons; Shaping New Frontiers through adopting long-term and bold strategies to utilize and share the benefits of innovation."
He affirmed the keenness of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on the effective cooperation with the regional and international bodies in the field of human rights, most notably the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the Human Rights Council and its relevant mechanisms, noting that the Kingdom has submitted its own reports of human rights conventions, to the committees of such agreements, and presented three comprehensive reports in the framework of the periodic review mechanism, and also cooperated with the procedures mechanism, and dealt positively with the inquiries that it receives in this regard.
He also affirmed that the Human Rights Council plays a fundamental and essential role in the protection and promotion of human rights around the world, and that the Kingdom rejects any attempt to reduce this role, affirms the importance of continuing the Council discussions, and takes into account the cultural and social diversity for all peoples.
He also affirmed the rights of the Palestinian people, including their right to self-determination, calling on the international community represented by the Human Rights Council to work on everything that would protect human rights in the occupied Palestinian and Arab territories.
The Foreign Minister strongly condemned all flagrant violations of human rights and abuses committed against Rohingya minority, calling on the international community and the United Nations and its organs to exert more efforts to end this human suffering, and provide emergency humanitarian assistance to ensure their delivery to the needy and affected people.
He also affirmed that the Kingdom has made great efforts over the past years to fight extremism and terrorism, and has taken all the measures and ways to root out this ideology based on murder and destruction, not only at the national level but also at the regional and international levels, as well as affirmation of the Kingdom on the importance of addressing this scourge and condemning all those who support it financially or morally, whether the sponsors are countries, organizations or individuals.
He called on not ignoring acts of some media outlets in supporting and consolidating these ideas in the communities under the pretext of freedom of opinion and expression in order to destabilize the security and stability of countries and societies, pointing out to the legitimate restrictions of freedom of opinion and expression of the international conventions, including respect for the rights of others and protection of national security and public order, health, and morals, and therefore it cannot be accepted to insult and contempt other religions and cultures under the pretext of freedom of opinion and expression, bearing in mind that this leads to the spread of the culture of hatered which leads to violations of human rights.
He stressed the Kingdom's firm position in supporting Yemen, its people and its legitimate government in facing the terrorist Iran-backed Houthi militia, which is the main cause of the conflict in Yemen since its control over the governmental institutions, occupation of capital Sanaa that resulted a humanitarian crisis, practicing of the worst forms of terrorism, siege of densely-populated cities, preventing food and medicine, looting relief and commercial convoys, recruitment of children and exploitation of civilians as human shields.
He stressed the Kingdom's commitment to the political solution of this crisis, the success of which might depend on the acceptance of the Houthi militias to it, according to the efforts of the envoy of the Secretary-General of the United Nations aimed at achieving the political solution based on the three references: the Gulf initiative, the National Dialogue Outputs and the Resolution of the Security Council 2216.
He pointed out that the Kingdom is keen on the supreme interests of Yemen, achieving the aspirations of its people and eliminating its crises. The Kingdom's sponsorship for Riyadh Agreement, which was signed between the Yemeni Legitimate Government and the Southern Transitional Council, is an evidence of this, as this agreement opens wider understandings among Yemeni components to reach a political solution that ends the Yemeni crisis and protects Yemen and its interests.
He said: the Kingdom calls on the international community, international organizations and civil society organizations to a serious stand in supporting Yemen. The Kingdom is also keen to establish peace and security, resolve the conflicts, support the people and communities through initiatives and programs that lead to support sustainable development, and to participate with the international community through the United Nations and their several organizations in order to achieve the development goals, create decent opportunities for life and combat disasters, epidemics and risks threatening humankind.
He noted that the Kingdom is the leading country in terms of providing humanitarian and development assistance, and the United Nations and the donor countries have joined the creation and exaltation for all and the importance of cooperation, and interdependence among the countries of the world.
He said that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia leads many initiatives to resolve disputes between countries, and strive to resolve all conflicts facing the peoples and countries, especially in this region, which suffers from some countries' attempts to destabilize and interference in their affairs.
He cuncluded affirming that the support of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia continues to pursue efforts to promote and protect human rights at all levels.