By His Excellency Mr Pham Viet Anh, Ambassador of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam to the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
My tenure as the Ambassador of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam to the Kingdom of the Netherlands began against an unexpected and unprecedented backdrop: the Covid-19 pandemic has been spreading all over the world, affecting every aspect of life and fundamentally changing how people live, work and think.
We have never fully acknowledged the severity of the global challenges until they knock at our doors. Although peace, cooperation, and development remain major trends in the world today, global challenges have become more severe, multi-dimensional and intertwined. The Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated the existing problems, worsened the inequalities and vulnerabilities in all countries, and threatened to impact the global progress in many areas. This unforeseen situation has caused confusion and disruptions to all countries, even the developed ones.
The Covid-19 pandemic marked an extraordinary turn for humanity as it has aroused stronger needs for global collaboration and joint responsibility. This microscopic coronavirus is similar to other global challenges such as climate change, poverty, conflicts, inequality, etc. in the sense that they know no border, making us realize how vulnerable our lives are if we do not stand together in solidarity. I would like to echo the call made by the UN Secretary-General, H.E. Mr. Antonio Guterres which goes “Covid-19 must be a wake-up call for us”. It should be a call to strengthen multilateralism in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world, in which no single country or organization is able to address the global challenge on their own.
Seventy-five years ago, the creation of the United Nations inaugurated a new era of cooperation and multilateralism. In the same year, on 2 September 1945, President Ho Chi Minh delivered the Declaration of Independence that proclaimed the birth of the Democratic Republic of Viet Nam (now the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam). Since those early days, President Ho Chi Minh, on multiple occasions, sent messages expressing Viet Nam’s desire to become a member of the United Nations and to be friend with all countries. Since then, Viet Nam has always shared the ideals and principles of freedom, peace and justice. We have always been grateful for the generous support from all countries and international friends towards our past righteous struggle for national independence and present national development. Today, Viet Nam is a reliable partner of 189 countries and territories, including 30 strategic partners, and a constructive and responsible member of more than 70 international and regional multilateral organizations and mechanisms.
In 2020, we are proud and honor to shoulder the dual responsibility as non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (for the term 2020-2021) and ASEAN Chairmanship. Being elected a UNSC non-permanent member for the second time is both a challenge and opportunity for us, especially when the record number of votes (192 out of 193) indicates high confidence the international community has placed in Viet Nam.
With this in mind, Viet Nam commits to deliver our best to contribute to global efforts towards a better world, where the people are placed at the center and no one is left behind. We shall continue efforts to promote dialogue towards fair and reasonable solutions to regional and global peace and security issues. We uphold multilateralism and the respect for international law and the UN Charter, and strengthen the cooperation between the United Nations and regional organizations, especially ASEAN.
As the 2020 ASEAN Chair, Viet Nam is working closely with other member states to build a region of peace, friendship, and cooperation, in order to realize the vision of ASEAN as a politically cohesive, economically integrated and socially responsible community.
Finally, as the Ambassador of Viet Nam to the Netherlands, it is my great honor to join hands with everyone to foster solidarity, friendship, and cooperation between Viet Nam and the Netherlands, as well as with all countries to overcome the immense challenges, for a brighter future for all./.