Statement by Mr. Raza Bashir Tarar, Deputy Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations, at the Security Councilís Open Meeting on The promotion and strengthening of the rule of law in the maintenance of international peace and security (19 January 2012)

Mr. President,

Pakistan welcomes this debate and is grateful to the South African presidency for the initiative.

  1. I would also like to thank the Secretary General for his report on ĎThe rule of law and transitional justice in conflict and post-conflict societiesí, and his statement this morning.
  2. The international community's efforts to define and implement the rule of law reflect the march of civilization. Today, rule of law is considered a critical component in our endeavours to build a durable system for peace and prosperity for all. It is also central to the concept of global peace and security and promotion of fair practices in the struggle for social and economic justice.
  3. The charter of the UN, its principles and international law are at the heart of a rule-based international system. Upholding principles of justice and rule of law, sovereign equality, settlement of disputes by peaceful means, the conduct of international relations without threat or use of force and; non-interference in domestic jurisdiction of any State is essential for the maintenance of international order.

Mr. President,

  1. The Security Council should lead by example in upholding and promoting the rule of law. The use of Article 39 of the Charter to determine the existence of any threat to peace or breach of peace must be made by the Security Council in accordance with the principles and purposes of the Charter as indicated in paragraph 2 of Article 24. In particular, the use of force should be consistent with the Charterís principles relating to collective security.
  2. In its decisions and practices, the Security Council must adhere to its legal foundation which is the Charter and international law. The institutions which are responsible for the implementation of the rule of law must strengthen it first by their own decisions and actions. If the Councilís decisions are informed by the same norms of fair play and justice which it seeks to promote, that would redound to the benefit of implementation of its decisions and manifold increase in the Councilís effectiveness.
  3. Concerted efforts should be made to ensure that the resolutions and decisions of the Security Council are implemented uniformly and without discrimination. Selective implementation must be avoided as it creates an unjust environment, which deepens conflicts and compounds sufferings of peoples. It also erodes confidence in the UN system and undermines credibility of the organization.
  4. International Humanitarian Law must remain the guiding norm in all situations of armed conflict. The Security Council must persist in demanding its full compliance by all to prevent or mitigate the appalling consequences of armed conflicts.

Mr. President,

  1. We agree with the recommendation of the Secretary General that the Council needs to strengthen its support for the International Court of Justice. The Security Council should request advisory opinions from the International Court of Justice whenever it is faced with issues of legal intricacy. The Council can make better use of Article 36 of the Charter by referring parties to a conflict to the International Court of Justice. Pacific settlement of disputes should be promoted by negotiation, mediation, conciliation, arbitration and other means as enshrined in Article 33 of the United Nations Charter.
  2. Pakistan appreciates the recent efforts for making the Security Council sanction regimes streamlined and transparent. The role of the Ombudsperson has been enhanced in the Security Council Resolution 1989. We are of the view that while much has been done, a lot of work is still needed to improve the procedures and meet the requirements of rule of law for ensuring a fair and transparent listing or de-listing of individuals and entities under the Councilís regimes.

Mr. President,

  1. Each conflict situation is unique and has its own dynamics. However, justice and rule of law needs should be integrated into any international or UN involvement in post-conflict societies. While working towards seamless transition from peacekeeping to peace-building and long-term political stability, partnerships among various stakeholders need to be expanded by placing national ownership and perspectives at the center of the rule of law assistance.

Mr. President,

  1. Practices encouraging impunity in cases of war crimes, genocide, and crime against humanity must be rejected. We support the mandates and work of the International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia. These tribunals are playing an important role. They have shown that, within their scope, no one is above or beyond the reach of international law.

Thank you Mr. President.