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Vietnam urges priority to saving lives in resolving global refugee challenge

The UN Security Council look into the worldwide refugee situation at a briefing on December 7 during which a Vietnamese diplomat called on all the parties concerned to prioritise saving lives so that no one dies while crossing a border or sea.

Ambassador Pham Hai Anh, Chargé d’affaires of Vietnam in the UN, said to prevent the wave of refugees, relevant governments hold the main responsibility for ensuring peace and security and resolving root causes of conflicts in a comprehensive and inclusive manner. Countries also need to meet people’s basic needs and create a peaceful environment for development.

He emphasised that people’s lives are the most important asset, appealing to all the parties concerned to prioritise saving lives so that no one dies while crossing a border or sea.

The constructive participation and dialogue by the related sides are the most effective method for refugees’ safe return and re-integration. Solutions, activities, and programmes of international cooperation and support must centre on people, avoid politicisation, and conform with the principle of respecting sovereignty and not interfering in one another’s internal affairs, according to Anh.

The diplomat also underscored the necessity of ensuring transparency in granting the refugee status to the ones seeking asylum, and in making decisions and policies. It is also needed to differentiate refugees, irregular migrants, and those migrating for economic purposes, especially amid the emerging non-traditional security threats.

He reiterated that Vietnam always attaches importance to regional and international cooperation in this issue and respects international law, including performing relevant obligations so as to deal with global challenges in an active and responsible manner.

UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi and other participants said the number of internally displaced people (IDP) and refugees has been on the rise as a result of uncontrolled conflicts and impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change.

In that context, the Council member states held that this is the common responsibility of all countries and the UN Security Council, noting that it is necessary to deal with root causes of the refugee and IDP issue, increase humanitarian aid to guarantee their safety and access to fundamental services.

Countries also need to enhance their political resolve and coordination to seek solutions to this issue and promote international cooperation basing on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities./.