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Deputy PM’s statement at UNSC meeting celebrating end of World War II

Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh on May 8 attended and delivered a speech at the UN Security Council high-level Arria-formula meeting “75 years from the end of the Second World War on European Soil – lessons learned for preventing future atrocities, responsibility of the Security Council.”

Following is the full test of the speech.

Thank you, Mr. President, for bringing us together, though only virtually, on this important occasion.

Mr. President,

Seventy-five years ago, the deadliest war in human history ended, but only after having caused untold suffering to hundreds of millions of people around the world.

We are indebted to those who fought and sacrificed, in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Allied Powers, and lest we forget, the people of the former Soviet Union.

The defeat of the fascists and aggressors in the Second World War, and indeed in all wars and conflicts, proved that actions driven by expansionism, militarism and the thirst for conquest and dominance can never bend the will of nations to fight for their independence and freedom.

It also demonstrated that no force can triumph over the burning desire of nations for peace and the shared values of humanity.

For Vietnam, the end of World War II helped bring a new beginning, as the nation emerged independent, after nearly a century under colonialism.

Rising from the ashes of World War II, nations have come together to rebuild a more peaceful, stable and prosperous world.

At the center of these efforts emerged a collective security system anchored in the UN Charter and international law.

Unfortunately, the end of the Second World War did not mean that peace was guaranteed. Colonialism and aggression continued to wreak havoc on nations. Vietnam, for one, suffered decades of devastating wars before our final victory in gaining independence, unification and peace.

Therefore, given the lessons learnt from the World War II and from our own history, Vietnam believes strongly that upholding international law, strengthened solidarity, cooperation and mutual trust on a global scale must underline our efforts to preserve the hard-won peace and stability in all parts of the world.

The principles of the Charter, particularly those of sovereign equality, territorial integrity, non-use of force and peaceful settlement of disputes, have proven to be pivotal in preventing another disastrous world war and maintaining sustainable peace.

This was echoed at the Security Council earlier this year, as the Council itself “reaffirmed its commitment to an international order based on international law as the indispensable foundation of a more peaceful, prosperous and just world.”

In Asia, the success of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in turning Southeast Asia from a war-torn and deeply divided region into a region of friendship and cooperation is a powerful example. It also highlights the crucial role of regional organizations in maintaining peace, security and stability in the region and beyond.

Let me conclude, Mr. President, with the wise words of President Ho Chi Minh, a UNESCO Great Man of Culture, who led the nation of Vietnam to independence exactly seventy-five years ago. He wrote, and I quote “The people everywhere love peace, and they hate wars. People everywhere wants to live in independence and freedom", end of quote. His words capture our collective desire to silence all guns, to end all wars, and achieve sustainable peace.  We continue to believe that our common human aspiration for peace, freedom and justice, and our determination to defend our independence, sovereignty and territory, will prevail over confrontation, the use of force and attempts for domination and conquest.

I thank you, Mr. President./.