In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

Mr. President,

It gives me pleasure to congratulate you, and your friendly country, on
assuming the presidency of the General Assembly in its current session. I
wish you success in your mission. I would like to express my sincere
appreciation to your predecessor Nassir AI-Nasser, and to the brotherly State
of Qatar, for the outstanding stewardship of the previous session. I would
also like to salute the Secretary General of the United Nations for striving to
preserve the role of the organization and enhance its effectiveness. I assure
you of Egypt’s support to all the efforts he is exerting for this purpose.


Coming here today and addressing the General Assembly carry
meanings reflected in the fact that I am the first Egyptian civilian President
elected democratically and freely, following a great peaceful revolution
hailed by the world. This revolution established a genuine legitimacy,
through the efforts of all Egyptians, inside and outside Egypt and with the
Grace of God.

Today, every Egyptian shares a sense of self-confidence, which puts
him/her on higher moral grounds. We have taken several steps on the road
towards establishing the modern state the Egyptians aspire for. One that is in
tune with the present, is based on the rule of law, democracy, and respect
for human rights, and does not compromise the values firmly embedded in
the souls of all Egyptians. A state that seeks justice, truth, freedom, dignity
and social justice.

The Egyptian revolution that was founded on the legitimacy that I
represent before you today was not the product of a fleeting moment, or a
brief uprising. Nor was it the product of the winds of change of spring or
autumn. Rather, this revolution, and all the ones preceding it and following it
in the region, were triggered by the long struggle of authentic national
movements that sought a life of pride and dignity for all citizens. It is thereby
reflecting the wisdom of history, and is sending a clear warning to those
attempting to put their interests before those of their peoples.

Mr. President,

The vision of the new Egypt that we strive to realize for our nation also
constitutes the frame of action we present to the world, and which should
guide our cooperation with the international community, in a spirit of
equality and mutual respect, entailing non-intervention in the affairs of
other states as well as the implementation of the international principles,
agreements and conventions. Today we reiterate our commitment to them,
particularly the United Nations Charter, which Egypt took part in drafting.

Post-revolution Egypt, having freed itself from the contradictions of a
bygone era, is among the leading nations defending justice, truth, freedom,
and dignity. We endeavor, on this moral and civilizational basis, and from the
platform of the United Nations, to advance these human and spiritual values,
through sustained work, genuine efforts, and the quest to solve problems
and address their root causes, without relinquishing the principles of law, or
the well-established values, to which the members of the international
community must adhere, to avoid grave consequences.

The New Egypt is determined to regain its standing among nations, and
assume an effective role in global issues, stemming from the will of its
people, as well as the legitimacy on which its regime is founded. This will is
rooted in Egypt’s ancient and modern history, its Arabic and Islamic spheres,
as well as its African identity. Egypt’s involvement in Arab, Islamic and
African issues is the reflection of the essential role it plays in defense of
interconnected fates and interlinked interests and values.

Mr. President,

The first issue which the world must exert all its efforts in resolving, on
the basis of justice and dignity, is the Palestinian cause. Long decades have
passed since the Palestinian People expressed their longing for restoring
their full rights and for building their independent state, with Jerusalem as
its capital. Despite their continued struggle, through all legitimate means to
attain their rights, and despite the acceptance by their representatives of the
resolutions adopted by the international community as a basis for resolving
its problems, this international legitimacy remains unable until now to
realize the hopes and aspirations of the Palestinian people. The resolutions
remain far from being implemented.

Our brothers and sisters in Palestine must also taste the fruits of
freedom and dignity. It is shameful that the free world accepts, regardless of
the justifications provided, that a member of the international community
continues to deny the rights of a nation that has been longing for decades for
independence. It is also disgraceful that settlement activities continue on the
territories of these people, along with the delay in implementing the
decisions of international legitimacy.

Proceeding from the perspective of defending truth, freedom, and
dignity and from my duty to support our Palestinian brothers and sisters, I
place the international community face to face with its responsibilities which
require the achievement of a just and comprehensive peace and the end of
all forms of occupation of Arab lands, and the implementation of relevant
international resolutions. I call for immediate and significant measures to
put an end to colonization, settlement activities, and the alteration in the
identity of Occupied Jerusalem.

The entire Palestinian leadership has charted a clear path towards the
restoration of the rights of the Palestinian people, within and outside
Palestine. The Arab world has given it its full support. The latter has also
presented a comprehensive peace initiative based on just peace. One that
restores the usurped rights of the Palestinian People, is founded on
international legitimacy, and lays the foundation of an independent
sovereign Palestinian state. One that also achieves the security and stability
the peoples of the region have long been waiting for.

On that basis, I assure you of Egypt’s full support to any course of
action Palestine decides to follow in the United Nations. I call upon all of
you, just as you have supported the revolutions of the Arab peoples, to lend
your support to the Palestinians in their endeavors to regain the full and
legitimate rights of a people struggling to gain its freedom and establish its
independent state.

I say it loudly to those wondering about our position vis-a-vis the
international agreements and conventions that we have previously adhered
to: we are committed to what we have signed on. We also support the
inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and are determined to pursue all
efforts side by side with them until they regain their rights.

Mr. President,

From this podium and at this eminent gathering I must address the
issue that weighs heavily upon all of us. The bloodshed in Syria and the
humanitarian crisis that has unfolded, must be stopped. The blood that is
shed in this country that is dear and near to us is far too valuable to continue
to be shed, and the Syrian people, dear to our hearts, deserve to hope for a
future of freedom and dignity. This has been the essence of the initiative I
proposed last month in the holy city of Mecca, and have reiterated on
subsequent occasions to avoid the worst, and prevent the continued
sufferings of the Syrian people, and the evolvement of the conflict into a full
scale civil war, with negative effects extending outside Syria and its
immediate neighbors.

Egypt, along with the three other countries involved in our initiative,
has held meetings, that have shown that there are many areas of
commonalities. We will continue to work to put an end to the suffering of
the Syrian people and provide them an opportunity to choose freely the
regime that best represents them. One that reinstates their country amongst
democratic states, so that it can once again resume its regional and
international roles based on solid legitimate foundations. I would like to
emphasize that the initiative is open to all those who wish to positively
contribute in resolving the Syrian crisis.

Egypt is committed to pursue the sincere efforts it has been exerting to
put an end to the catastrophe in Syria, within an Arab, regional and
international framework. One that preserves the unity of this brotherly
state, involves all factions of the Syrian people without racial, religious or
sectarian discrimination, and spares Syria the dangers of foreign military
intervention that we oppose. Egypt is also committed to supporting the
mission of AI-Akhdar Al-lbrahimi, the joint special representative of the UN
and the league of Arab states to Syria, and continuing the current efforts
aiming at unifying the Syrian opposition and encouraging it to propose a
comprehensive unified vision of the steady democratic transfer of power in a
manner that preserves the rights of all constituencies in Syria, and maintains
their essential places in the new Syria.

I cannot omit to reiterate here today Egypt’s commitment to working
with its Arab brothers and sisters to reclaim our rightful position in the
world. This Arab nation is an integral component of Egypt’s vision of its
national security, which extends from the Arab Gulf to the Atlantic Ocean,
and is thriving with opportunities of cooperation and constructive
engagement with the entire world.

Egypt also considers that the extremely valuable contribution of the
Arab world within the wider Islamic sphere is of vital necessity to promote
joint action within the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. Egypt will exert
all efforts to ensure that the next OIC conference, to be held early next year
in Egypt, strengthens mutual understanding between Islamic countries and
the rest of the world, and sets in motion the principles of the dialogue of
civilizations, and gets rid of the causes of misunderstanding used by fanatics
on both sides to wrongly prove that differences between us are great, and
achieve political goals completely unrelated to the ideals of religions, as well
as to human values and ethics.

Mr. President,

Our brothers and sisters in Sudan need, more than ever, your support.
This country seeks to achieve stability and development and works on
building healthy ideal relations with South Sudan. I believe that this nascent
state, together with Sudan, are ready to become a center of cooperation
between the Arab world and African countries. Sudan has made great
sacrifices in its quest for peace and stability. It has committed itself to the
implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. It was also the first
country to recognize the nascent state of south Sudan. But let me be frank: it
has not received the support it deserves. The time has come for international
efforts to rally to support it and work on settling differences between Sudan
and its neighboring South Sudan to resolve all outstanding issues.

Mr. President,

The success of the difficult transitional phase the Somali people have
gone through by electing His Excellency Hassan Sheikh Mohamed as their
president is a positive step towards unity and stability. I call upon all
Members of this Assembly to support the efforts of the Somali Government
in fending off those seeking to hinder the efforts exerted to achieve stability,
reconstruct public institutions, and realize the aspirations of the Somali
people for a better future.

Mr. President,

The principles of justice and righteousness are linked to achieving
security and stability in the world, particularly in the Middle East. Over many
years, some have wrongfully sought to attain stability through oppression
and tyranny. Some of us have, alas, applauded their bad deeds. But now that
the peoples of the region have regained their freedom, they will not tolerate
being deprived of their rights, whether by their own leaders or outside

Mr. President,

The will of the people, especially in our region, no longer tolerates the
continued non-accession of any country to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation
Treaty and the non-application of the safeguards regime to their nuclear
facilities, especially if this is coupled with irresponsible policies or arbitrary
threats. In this regard, the acceptance by the international community of the
principle of pre-emptiveness or the attempt to legitimize it is in itself a
serious matter and must be firmly confronted to avoid the prevalence of the
law of the jungle.

Cognizant of the danger that the status quo entails on the security of
this important region, with its natural resources and trade passages, Egypt
stresses the necessity of mobilizing international efforts to hold the
conference on achieving a Middle East free of nuclear weapons and all other
weapons of mass destruction before the end of the current year 2012, with
the participation of all concerned parties without exception. And I say it very
clearly: the only solution is to get rid of nuclear weapons, and all weapons of
mass destruction. But we also emphasize the right of all countries of the
region to the peaceful use of nuclear energy within the framework of the
NPT, with a commitment to honour their obligations in this respect and
provide the necessary guarantees to the countries of the region so as to
remove any doubts surrounding their intentions.

Mr. President,

The concepts of justice, truth and dignity encompass, in our view, the
frameworks that govern international relations. A simple analysis of such
relations will undoubtedly reveal the extent of injustice inflicted upon the
African continent. I will not enumerate the previous commitments made in
this hall to boost development and economic growth in Africa through aid
and investments. The world has the responsibility to support Africa’s efforts,
beyond mere promises, through providing the assistance needed to redeem
its treasures stolen over consecutive eras, the last of which was when some
thought that supporting unjust regimes would assist in achieving a fake
stability that protects their interests, while these regimes were spreading
corruption and smuggling their wealth outside the country.

I am aware that achieving the desired goals can only be realized
through an active participation of the peoples of this continent, and their
assumption of their responsibilities. This is something that we, as Africans,
are ready and willing to do in our quest for a better future for our countries.
Today, we, as Africans, have to achieve for our continent a new set of
ambitious goals that would ensure Africans are on the right track towards
sustainable development, and realizes their aspiration for a better future,
and a real participation of African in the international economic system.

I assure you that Egypt continues to support its brothers and sisters in
Africa, and is ready to cooperate with any relevant stakeholder within the
continent or outside to raise living standards in Africa, through the exchange
of expertise and best practices.

Mr. President,

My speech leads me to talk about justice, freedom and dignity within
the framework of the current international system. Egypt’s young men and
women did not revolt only because of the internal situation, but they also
expressed the aspirations they had at the regional and international levels.
This youth representing the majority of the Egyptians believes that real
legitimacy is the one derived from the people’s will, not the one imposed by
an assertive authority that lacks any legal or moral basis. We look similarly to
the current situation in the international financial system, and stress the
need to work diligently to reform it, based on the same principles, to renew
its legitimacy, and preserve its credibility. This is a legitimate quest for
peoples and nations that express themselves, and seeks to participate in
shaping a new world, and a better future for their children.

Revitalizing the General Assembly, since it is the only democratic forum
representing all member states, and reforming the Security Council, which
still reflects an arrangement agreed upon in an era very different from
today’s realities, must remain high on the priority list of issues we must start
tackling with the necessary seriousness.

I would like from this podium to emphasize the need for the United
Nations to give special attention to supporting issues of women and youth. I
have proposed during the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Tehran a new
initiative to establish a UN body solely dedicated to youth issues, giving
particular attention to the issues of education, training, employment, and
improving their participation in political life. The aim is to build the capacity
of future generations to realize their aspirations.

Mr. President,

Egypt would like to stress that the international system will not get
fixed as long as the application of double standards remains. We expect from
others, as they expect from us, that they respect our cultural particularities
and religious points of reference, and not seek to impose concepts that are
unacceptable to us or politicize certain issues and use them as a pretext to
intervene in the affairs of others.

What Muslims and migrants are going through in a number of regions
worldwide, in terms of discrimination and violation of their human rights,
and vicious campaigns against what they hold sacred, is unacceptable. It is
opposed to the most basic principles of the Charter of the Organization
where we meet today. These practices have become pervasive enough that
they now carry a name: Islamophobia.

We must join hands in confronting these regressive ideas that hinder
cooperation among us. We must act together in the face of extremism,
discrimination, and incitement to hatred on the basis of religion or race. The
General Assembly, as well as the Security Council, has the principal
responsibility in addressing this phenomenon that is starting to have
implications that clearly affect international peace and security.

The obscenities recently released as part of an organized campaign
against Islamic sanctities is unacceptable and requires a firm stand. We have
a responsibility in this international gathering to study how we can protect
the world from instability and hatred. Egypt respects freedom of expression.
One that is not used to incite hatred against anyone. One that is not directed
towards one specific religion or culture. A freedom of expression that tackles
extremism and violence. Not the freedom of expression that deepens
ignorance and disregards others. But we also stand firmly against the use of
violence in expressing objection to these obscenities.

Mr. President,

Before I conclude, I must state that the severity and recurrence of
financial and economic crises, must lead us to review the international
economic decision making process that affect the fate of peoples that do not
participate in their formulations, yet are the first to bear their negative
consequences on growth, trade, the environment, as well as on the social
fabric of society, as a result of unfair trade rules and the conditionalities
imposed on the transfer of technology and access to the necessary financing
for development.

There is a need for a new global economic governance centered on
people, and aiming at consolidating cooperation between partners in
development on the basis of mutual benefit and interests.

Mr. President,

I have laid before you our vision. A vision shared by the Egyptian
people. I have also attempted to briefly outline Egypt’s views on the main
issues in the Middle East, Africa and the world. From this perspective and
place of responsibility, I reaffirm the need for all member states to
collectively address, swiftly and seriously, these issues, in tandem with other
crucial and persisting matters. This is needed to safeguard the credibility and
effectiveness of this inclusive organization and to uphold the noble principles
on which it stands tall.

I trust that the United Nations is capable of assuming its intended role
in addressing all global and regional challenges through dialogue,
understanding and joint cooperation between its member states on the basis
of the principles of international law.

Meanwhile, post-revolution Egypt will exert all possible efforts to
strengthen cooperation and engagement with all members of this
organization. We will always remain at the forefront of international
endeavors aiming at achieving freedom, justice and dignity of all peoples, as
well as maintaining the security and stability of all our countries.

May God’s peace and mercy be upon you.

I thank you Mr. President.