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HRH Premier urges concerted efforts to achieve peace

New York, His Royal Highness Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa affirmed that the implementation of security and peace is the real beginning for progress and development and ensuring that national gains are preserved, called on international community to take urgent action to defuse crises in various regions and agree on a comprehensive vision for human development and welfare of mankind.

He stressed the belief of the Kingdom of Bahrain that achieving peace and going forward on the path of development is the most pressing requirement, at the moment. He pointed out in this regard that many peoples, especially in the Middle East, are looking for lasting and just peace to end their tragedies and catch up with development and progress.

HRH warned that today's world is facing a cycle of challenges fueled by ethnic �and- sectarian conflicts and expansive ambitions, emphasizing that the imminent threat posed by terrorism, the frenzied race to possess weapons of mass destruction, all of which threaten the present and future of humanity and warn dire consequences if the will of the international community does not unite to end its bleeding and eradicate its causes.

His Highness went on to say that the path to the good sought by mankind begins with the intertwining of the hands of the international community, to achieve peace throughout the world through a sincere will that believes that the world can all know and co-exist and share the benefits.

He stressed that the will of the people and their good morals aspire to live in peace in a world free of wars and bloody conflicts.

He said that the Kingdom of Bahrain, under the leadership of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, has been known for its openness and cultural diversity.

Bahrain is a living example of coexistence between different religious and ethnic groups, within a solid social fabric in which everyone lives in a climate of security and stability, he affirmed.

HRH's remarks came in his speech delivered at the Bahrain Visions Forum, which was held at the headquarters of the United Nations, on the sidelines of the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly, under the theme "Shared Visions for a Successful World Future.

The forum was organized in collaboration between Bahrain and the Global Security Institute.

HRH's speech was delivered by Mr. Mohammed bin Ibrahim Al Mutawa, Minister of Cabinet Affairs, in presence of Ms. Amina Mohammed, Undersecretary General of the United Nations, the President of the UN General Assembly Maria Grace, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, Secretary General of the League of Arab States, and Dr. Abdul Latif Bin Rashid Al Zayani, Secretary General of the Gulf Cooperation Council, and Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa and other senior officials.

HRH stressed that the chaos and destruction seen in many regions must move the conscience of the international community to develop a comprehensive vision to address security, political and economic challenges. The United Nations, he said, should play a bigger role in resolving crises and taking more effective measures to ensure the establishment of peace and the elimination of causes and tension in many parts of the world.

"The Bahrain Visons Forum comes within the framework of the Kingdom of Bahrain's interest in issues of peace, security and sustainable development, which is constantly motivating and mobilizing efforts for peace in the world and for the development process to take its proper course, so that humanity can enjoy prosperity and stability, HRS said.

He added that the initiative of the Kingdom of Bahrain to organize this important international forum is to emphasize that the first approach to security and stability, and thus to the advancement and development, is achieving a comprehensive and just peace, which can be implemented through reaching peaceful solutions to the crises and conflicts some regions are suffering from, in accordance with the principles on which the United Nations was founded.

He pointed out that the holding of the forum coincided with the celebration of the United Nations International Day of Peace on September 21, which focuses this year on the "Right to Peace" as a human right, comes in support to the objectives of sustainable development adopted by the United Nations.

He expressed his hope that Bahrain, through this forum, is looking forward to support the noble goal of peace and justice.

In the conclusion, HRH extended his thanks to all participants in the forum, expressing his hope that this initiative will contribute to the promotion of the lofty values of promoting co-existence and cooperation among peoples.

He also thanked the World Security Institute and all other organizations concerned for their efforts to spread a culture of peace, coexistence and cooperation based on common interests so that we can live in a world free of conflict, tension and terrorism.

For her part, UN Undersecretary-General Amina Mohamed praised the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Global Security Institute for their continued support and hosting the Bahrain Visions forum. She said she was pleased to participate in the forum as an opportunity to discuss the current challenges facing the world and to explore how to address together the interconnected threats to peace and development.

Conflicts are sadly the biggest obstacle to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the largest cause for humanitarian suffering', she said.

Peace and security must be based on a shared vision, she added.

She said that according to the recent United Nations - World Bank study Pathway to Peace better funded, more focused preventive action could have saved between 5 to US$70 billion per year for the affected countries and the international community combined.

The Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations said that the sustainable development goals, address many drivers of armed conflicts. SDG5 on gender equality and womens' empowerment, is not only essential in itself, but is also an enabler to perform other goals, she added.

She noted that the participation of women in decision-making at all levels makes peace agreements stronger, makes societies more resilient and economies stronger, commending the efforts of the Government of the Kingdom of Bahrain in supporting and empowering women.

She affirmed that the 2030 Sustainable Development Plan was a global road map and that she looks forward to hearing new ideas on how to cooperate and work for a sustainable and peaceful future that would leave no one behind, as well as exploring innovative financing mechanisms, including contributions from individual institutions and collective funding.

Mr. Ahmed Abul-Gheit, Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, delivered a speech in which he thanked the Kingdom of Bahrain for inviting him to attend Bahrain Vision Forum in its first edition.

He said the world is witnessing the rise of China as a major economic power and said it is expected to become the largest economic power within a few years, referring to the current global scene and the impact of events on the Arab region and the Middle East.

Highlighting the return of Russia as an emerging power in the international arena, the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States expressed his belief that both China and Russia seem to be forming a strategic alliance if not a strategic partnership or perhaps a block of some kind, as he termed it.

Aboul Gheit said that it is clear that the manner in which global trade had been conducted over the past seven decades was characterized by an onslaught nature, pointing out that although trade is a driving force for development, it may also be the cause of triggering wars and conflicts if interrupted .

For his part, Foreign Minister Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa said the Bahrain Vision Forum is a testament to the forward looking and visionary leadership of H.R.H Prince Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Bahrain.

H.R.H understands the need for a forum that looks beyond the immediate concerns of day to day policymaking, proposes bold visions, and tackles in a thorough and encompassing way the challenges we face as an international community, and the underlying questions that will determine the future paths of our societies' he confirmed.

He said that the Bahrain Visions Forum will become through the coming years, a place where leaders at UNGA meet to discuss and find solutions to such regional and global topics of concern such as climate change in our region, the effect of automation on our economies and long-term geopolitical consequences of current events that deserve close attention.

We in Bahrain have maintained a diverse and multicultural society for centuries, and under the leadership of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, we strive to preserve and promote the values of mutual acceptance and respect for all, particularly the diverse communities from all over the world that call Bahrain their home, the foreign minister said.

Our diversity has given our society its strength and dynamism and allowed us to overcome the many challenges around us and to prosper despite a challenging regional environment, he added.

In his speech, the foreign minister reviewed Bahrain's achievements at all levels, pointing out that Bahrain has long been a pioneer in the field of economic and human development.

We seek to provide all Bahrainis with the opportunities to advance themselves by shifting our economy away from oil wealth to a productive and globally competitive economy driven by the private sector, the minister said.

Despite a challenging economic environment in recent years, he said, we have maintained a constant growth rate of over 3%. Ongoing Infrastructure investment projects in Bahrain total over $32 billion, and we have invested over 800 million Dinars to help Bahraini entrepreneurs create 35,000 new businesses.

The foreign minister went on to say the Kingdom aims to utilize the achievements it has made since the launch of His Majesty King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa's reform program in 2001 to improve the role and work of the Human Rights Council to better promote the protection of human rights worldwide.

He highlighted in this respect the U.S Department of State's recognition of Bahrain's unprecedented regional role in tackling Human trafficking and forced labor by elevating Bahrain to TIER 1 in its latest Trafficking in Persons Report.

He stressed that Bahrain's commitment to peace, mutual understanding, and shared prosperity is solid and unwavering.

We are constantly striving to learn from others and are willing to engage and share our experience with the world, the minister concluded.

Dr. Abdul Latif bin Rashid Al Zayani, Secretary General of the Gulf Cooperation Council, delivered a speech in which he expressed his thanks and appreciation to His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa for his wise leadership, vision and sincere call to promote the values of religious tolerance and peaceful coexistence to ensure the values of diversity and pluralism and to preserve national unity in the Bahraini society, which he said was clearly demonstrated at the Forum and the accompanying exhibition, organized by the King Hamad International Center for Peaceful Coexistence at the United Nations Headquarters.

He also expressed his sincere thanks and appreciation to the leadership, the Government of Bahrain, His Royal Highness the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Institute for Global Security for their understanding of the need for these deliberations and providing this unique opportunity to explore the visions and aspirations.

For their part, participants in the forum praised the serious discussions and dialogues on the issues of peace and development in the world and the presentation of realistic solutions to the crisis in the region and the world, stressing that the interest of the Kingdom of Bahrain in the establishment of such events reflects its commitment to participate actively in the international community and to mobilize efforts to address world issues.

They also noted the importance of the vision of participants in the Forum to promote understanding and awareness of regional and global challenges and to identify new approaches and formulas for addressing threats and instability at the regional and global levels.

At the end of the forum, they called for the continuation of this event on an annual basis as a forum that brings together a wide range of politicians and experts to discuss and present visions and ideas related to the most important issues and challenges faced by the peoples of the world in terms of living standards, health and natural health, constituted by modern weapons, weapons of mass destruction and indiscriminate weapons, in particular.

Source: Bahrain News Agency

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