Muscat: The Sultanate, under the wise leadership of His Majesty Sultan Haitham Bin Tarik, has affirmed its continuous commitment to the main fundamentals and principles of its foreign policy.
Oman’s foreign policy advocates good neighbourliness, non-interference in the internal affairs of others, respect for international laws and charters, support for cooperation among countries and the enhancement of opportunities for internal dialogue.
The Sultanate also stressed its conviction on the need to resolve differences in a spirit of harmony and tolerance that has always been the mainstay of the country’s human civilisation. Oman believes that harmony and tolerance lead to better and more lasting results than could be achieved by conflict and strife.
This was stated in the Sultanate’s speech delivered by Foreign Minister Sayyid Badr Hamad Al Busaidi before the 76th session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly.
Sayyid Badr reiterated the Sultanate’s continued cooperation with the UN Secretary General and all member states with the prime aim of achieving the UN’s noble goals, notably establishing and consolidating international peace and security.
In the speech, Sayyid Badr also highlighted the efforts exerted by the Sultanate while dealing with coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
He said that “Crises and challenges are also opportunities for nations to test their readiness and enhance their capabilities. Despite the great challenges and hurdles posed to our daily lives by Covid-19, the pandemic did not discourage us, neither did weaken our resolve to confront it or address its impacts and repercussions.
“In the Sultanate of Oman, the availability of vaccines has had a significant positive effect in strengthening our drive to address this pandemic. This consolidated our hope to eradicate the pandemic and experience a gradual return to normal life,” said Sayyid Badr.
“Through preventive measures and by conducting the National Immunisation Campaign (covering all targeted age-groups), my country has been able to curb the spread of the epidemic and cut down the number of infections deaths and cases of hospitalization. This helped us resume to normalcy all economic, commercial and social activities and opening all sorts of travel, while at the same time adhering to preventive and precautionary measures,” Sayyid Badr added.
“As we continue our efforts to tackle this pandemic, we call upon the international community to strengthen cooperation and solidarity. We also urge vaccine producing and donor states to do their best to ensure an equitable distribution of vaccines to all countries and peoples, especially those in less developed regions suffering sharp shortage of medical facilities and capabilities. The aim is to sustain international cooperation and societal interdependence and to ensure decent life for people everywhere,” said Sayyid Badr.
“We seize this opportunity to offer a word of sincere appreciation and admiration to those in charge of health systems, especially frontline teams in all countries of the world. We value the tremendous efforts and great sacrifices made by international organisations for the sake of all humanity,” said Sayyid Badr.
The rest of the speech reads as follows: “We, in the Sultanate of Oman, are part of this interconnected world with which we share common interests and destiny. We are pleased with what pleases the world and regret what is harmful to it. Therefore, we strive with all our energies and capabilities to contribute to the advancement of peace at all regional and international levels. We are committed to our position of clarity, frankness and objectivity. We are also firm in our adherence to our values and principles. We uphold a balanced and constructive approach in dealing with all issues.
“From this standpoint, my country supported and welcomed positive developments that resulted from Al-Ula summit held in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. We appreciate the success of reconciliation efforts led by the State of Kuwait.
“We also affirm our support for the fair cause of Palestinian people and their legitimate demands for independence from Israel. We support Palestinian people’s right to establish their own independent state, with East Jerusalem as its capital, in accordance with the international law, relevant Security Council Resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative.
“As for the Yemeni crisis, my country will go ahead with its persistent efforts and will continue to work with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Nations (UN) envoy, the United States envoy for Yemen and the Yemeni parties concerned, with the aim of ending the war by reaching a comprehensive and permanent ceasefire respected by all sides, as well as full resumption of humanitarian efforts to provide the needs of the brethren in Yemen, especially medicine, healthcare, food, fuel and housing.
“We add our voice to all who believe in the need to reach a comprehensive political settlement to crisis in Yemen in a manner that restores to its people a return to security, stability and normal life, while at the same time safeguarding the security and interests of the countries of the region.
“In the meantime, we hope that the Vienna talks over Iran’s nuclear programme will lead to results that achieve the desired consensus among all parties because we strongly believe that this will be in the interest of the region and the entire world.
“Like the rest of world countries, we have followed up the recent developments in Afghanistan. Here, we would like to express our hope that all Afghan parties would work towards reconciliation and advance the higher interests of the Afghan people and their aspiration for security, stability, economic and social development as well as measures to establish positive relations with neighbouring countries and the international community.
“My country condemns all forms and manifestations of terrorism and supports all efforts and strategies aimed to eradicate this negative phenomenon which contradicts religious and human values, clashes with civilized ethics and threatens global security and stability.
“The Sultanate also calls for eliminating threats to international maritime trade. It urges full adherence to treaties, agreements and the international law to ensure freedom of navigation in a manner that secures the flow of trade between countries and enhances opportunities for economic growth. We appeal to all member states to fulfil their commitments made under relevant treaties and disarmament agreements, in particular treaties on denuclearization and removal of weapons of mass destruction in order to secure global stability.
“My country has sought to translate its international commitment towards the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 2030 (SDG 2030) by integrating its three SDG components (economic, social and environmental), as well as the goals of the Sultanate’s development strategies and plans. We view this as a major pillar of Oman Vision 2040 and its executive plans.
“We are fully aware that the road to sustainable development remains a long and difficult one and that, to meet our obligations, we have to depend on our ability to face challenges, and this requires solid international and regional cooperation. Towards this end, we recognize that renewed commitment to social justice serves as the real foundation for work at both levels of national and international policy. Here, we welcome and support investment and economic diversification programmes, which constitute key priorities of development plans in the Sultanate of Oman. This will contribute to maximizing benefits and imparting opportunities to our partners and society.
“Like other countries of the world, the Sultanate of Oman attaches great attention to the risks posed by climate change. They are hazards that affect environmental, agricultural, economic and infrastructure systems. To counter climate change and limit its increasing negative effects, the Sultanate of Oman has implemented the draft National Strategy for Adaptation and Mitigation of Climate Change, which includes reports on the expected impacts on development sectors and sets out plans for appropriate adaptation. My country has recently submitted the second Nationally Determined Contributions Report on reducing greenhouse gas emissions as part of its commitments to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
“The world has been witnessing new transformations brought about by scientific and technological progress, which makes it incumbent upon us all, once again, to emphasise the importance of strengthening global partnership in order to maximise the benefits to be gained from advanced technologies. It is also necessary to keep pace with technological progress within the context of SDG and to confront the challenges of the modern age, a byproduct of which is the threat to the climate.
“There is no doubt that women have a great role to play, alongside men, in building a social fabric that ensures the proper upbringing of young people upon whom the hopes of nations rest. You are well aware that young people are the hope of the present and the mainstay of the future and countries rely upon their young generations for their development. Therefore, it has been essential for governments to place youth on top their priorities, and to provide everything that would advance young people’s capabilities. I emphasise my country’s commitment to enabling women and youth to acquire knowledge and all possible capabilities, and to ensure their active participation in the process of construction, development, innovation and prosperity.
“In conclusion, Your Excellency the President, we observe that the international community faces pressing issues that must be addressed with international cooperation to attain the goals of stability, harmony and prosperity as aspired by humanity. Hence, we believe that consolidating the true concept of partnership and common destiny among all peoples and societies is the most appropriate means to achieve these goals and enhance the esteemed status that the United Nations aspires for and seeks to sustain”. -ONA