05:56 GMT +316 December 2019
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    Russia is submitting to the UN General Assembly a draft resolution on strengthening the arms control system, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.

    Blasting the US: Key Moments of Day 4 of UNGA Debate

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    The fourth day of the United Nations General Assembly High-Level Debate was dominated by criticism of the United States by several governments, and by warnings of the Pakistani Prime Minister about the prospect of a nuclear war with India.


    In his speech to the General Assembly, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi focused primarily on the economic development of his country. He denounced the spread of terrorism, but never made mention of the embattled region of Jammu and Kashmir.

    "We belong to a country that has given the world not war, but Buddha's message of peace. And that is the reason why our voice against terrorism, to alert the world about this evil, rings with seriousness and outrage,” Modi said.

    "The lack of unanimity among us on the issue of terrorism dents those very principles that are the basis for the creation of the United Nations," he said in his address. "A fragmented world is in the interest of no one."


    Unlike Prime Minister Modi, the Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan’s speech was almost entirely dedicated to the issue of Kashmir. He warned the international community against possible escalation of conflict between Pakistan and India over the disputed regions.

    "When a nuclear-armed country fights to the end, it will have consequences far beyond the borders. It will have consequences for the world," Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan , as he called Modi's actions in Kashmir "stupid" and "cruel."

    "That's not a threat," Khan said. "It's a fair worry. Where are we headed?"

    Khan said the United Nations had a responsibility for robust involvement in the problem, adding that inaction would produce negative results.

    He also called on India to lift the curfew imposed on Kashmir for “55 days” to date and called on the international community to grant the people of Kashmir the right of self-determination.


    Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi slammed the US in a speech before the General Assembly, for unilateral imposition of tariffs which led to a trade war in which the two nations are still bogged down.

    "Erecting walls will not resolve global challenges, and blaming others for one's own problems does not work," he said, in a reference likely aimed at the United States. "Tariffs and provocation of trade disputes, which upset global industrial and supply chains, serve to undermine the multilateral trading regime and global economic and trade order. They may even plunge the world into recession."

    He also said China had initiated domestic legal procedures to join the Arms Trade Treaty – which Trump recently vowed never to ratify.

    "As a responsible member of the international family, China is willing to continue to strengthen exchanges and cooperation with all parties and work together to build a standardised and reasonable arms trade order and make positive contributions to maintaining international and regional peace and stability,” Wang Yi said.


    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in his speech blamed the US and its allies for the challenges the world faces at the moment, and for the increasing fragmentation of the international community. He scolded Western nations for pursuing badly out-of-date ideas fit for the Cold War era.

    "It is hard for the West to accept seeing its centuries-long dominance in world affairs diminishing," Lavrov said. "Leading Western countries are trying to impede the development of the polycentric world, to recover their privileged positions, to impose standards of conduct based on the narrow Western interpretation of liberalism on others."

    He also scorned Western nations for maintaining double standards, and for manipulating their own citizens to feed them the agenda.

    "When it is advantageous, the right of the people to self-determination has significance. And when it is not, it is declared 'illegal'," he said.


    Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodriguez condemned the US and its allies who recognized the opposition leader Juan Guaido - after he proclaimed himself an “interim president” of Venezuela - as the nation’s president, calling it the “worst mistake in the diplomatic history of these countries.”

    She condemned the US for imposing sanctions “focused on strangling the Venezuelan economy,” as the country, cut off from its main source of income, struggles with political and social crisis, exacerbated by what Maduro claims is US interference.

    When Rodriguez stepped up to the General Assembly tribune, the US delegation demonstratively left the assembly hall, joined by several other delegates.

    “The Maduro regime’s lies & deceit corrupt the UN charter. We gather to solve the world’s problems, not stand by while Maduro starves the people of Venezuela,” the US mission to the UN tweeted following the event. "That’s why we joined other nations to walk out of #UNGA74 when Maduro’s crony took the stage.”


    The Prime Minister of Malaysia Mahathir bin Mohamad called in his speech for refurbishment of the veto power of the United Nations Security Council, saying that in current form it is too easy to abuse.

    "How much longer should this group be allowed to exercise this power? How long, forever? The unspoken time frame seems to be eternal," he said, referring to the five permanent members of the Security Council – China, France, Russia, the UK and the US. "The veto powers should not think they would always be above international laws and norms.”

    According to Mahathir, the veto should only apply if two Veto Powers apply it together and three non-Veto members agree with it.

    “We must resuscitate the original purpose of this great organisation – the United Nations Organisation. We must punish warmongers. We must make the world peaceful for all.”


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