The statement was held in the 6th Commitee on October 13th, under agenda item 141:
"Consideration of effective measures to enhance the protection, security and safety of diplomatic and consular missions and representatives."
Speaking on behalf of the five Nordic countries - Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Sweden and my own country, Norway, I would like to express our appreciation to the Secretary-General for his report on effective measures to enhance the protection, security and safety of diplomatic and consular missions and representatives, as contained in document A/59/125.
The present item was introduced into the Agenda of the General Assembly by the Nordic countries twenty-four years ago. We welcome the fact that the Assembly has continued to consider this item on a regular basis, and that it condemns all violations of the protection of diplomatic as well as consular representatives and premises.
Some of the first principles and rules which emerged on the conduct of international relations were, in fact, on the protection of foreign emissaries, and such rules seem to have appeared in all legal cultures. The very system of international co-operation depends upon the protection of representatives of States.
There can be no doubt that receiving states, according to universally accepted principles and rules of international law, such as the Vienna Conventions on Diplomatic and Consular Relations, are under the obligation to ensure the protection of diplomatic and consular representatives and their premises as well as missions and representatives to international organisations. Respect for the principles and rules of international law governing diplomatic and consular relations is a basic prerequisite for the normal conduct of relations among States and for the fulfilment of the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.
The fundamental reason for the principles of protection of diplomatic and consular missions and representatives is to protect the channels of communications between States. This is essential in order to promote the maintenance of international peace and security and further the normal conduct of business between nations. This is not intended to protect particular individuals. In this context, it should be stressed that, while the sending states are entitled to the best possible protection of their representatives, the duty of those representatives to respect the laws and regulations of the receiving states must be strictly observed, as stated in the Vienna Conventions on Diplomatic and Consular Relations.
The Nordic countries strongly condemn acts of violence against diplomatic and consular representatives, as well as against representatives of international intergovernmental organisations and officials of such organisations, and we would like to stress that such acts can never be justified. We are particularly concerned about incidents that seriously impede the work of representatives and officials. It is alarming that innocent lives have been endangered or lost in a number of incidents in recent years. Once again we would like to emphasise the need for close co-operation between the sending and receiving states in order to prevent violations of the security and safety of diplomatic and consular missions and representatives.
We continue to appeal to all states that have not yet done so to become parties to the international legal instruments relevant in this field. In this context we refer to the Secretary-General’s report section IV, which contains information on signatures, ratifications, accessions and successions relating to relevant conventions and protocols. In this regard, we welcome that several additional States have become participants to these instruments since the previous report on the topic.
The Nordic countries would like once more to draw the attention of delegations to the reporting procedures on violations of the protection of diplomatic and consular premises and personnel; guidelines which have been laid out in the resolutions under this item. In our view, it is important to raise awareness of occurred violations through such reports with a view to contributing to the enhancement of the protection of diplomatic and consular missions and representatives.
We would also like to thank the Secretariat for its work on the operative implementation of those resolutions.
Thank You, Mr. Chairman