NEW YORK, Sept 24 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is expected to stress on respect for international organisations and international laws in his speech to the 74th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) here on Friday.
Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah said although these organisations and laws may not be perfect, there was no option other than to obey them while reforms were being undertaken.
“Based on last year where Dr Mahathir repeated his call for the reformation of the UN, I believe that in his speech this year, he will stress on the importance of respect for international organisations and laws.
“This is because the Malaysian government, including the current administration has always believed in the concept of multilateralism and this concept is facing a lot of challenges now,” he told the Malaysian media here yesterday.
Saifuddin said another important event for Malaysia during the 74th UNGA will be the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Summit Leaders Dialogue 6 entitled “The 2020-2030 Vision” tomorrow, where the prime minister will be speaking.
“The other is a side event at the UN Headquarters on Thursday (Sept 26) entitled 'Environmental Stewardship in Addressing Poverty to Achieve Sustainable Development For All' organised by Malaysia and co-sponsored by Turkey and Pakistan and the UN Department of Social Economic Affairs.
“Malaysia puts a lot of importance on sustainable development as it is already embedded in the 11th Malaysia Plan and will very much feature in the 12th and 13th plans as well as we see the implementation of SDG as an extension of Vision 2020,” he added.
Saifuddin said Dr Mahathir will also be speaking at the World Leaders Forum at the University of Columbia.
“The university usually invites prominent world leaders to deliver a lecture and the prime minister has been invited to talk on the topic 'Rule of Law Through Multilateralism'.
“Dr Mahathir will also be involved in a dialogue organised by the UN Council on Foreign Relations and a side event on the Rohingya crisis.
“Besides these, the prime minister will also give interviews to the Wall Street Journal and the Oxford Business Group.
“Dr Mahathir is scheduled to also hold various bilateral meetings, including with Pakistan Premier Imran Khan and Turkey's president Recep Tayyip Erdogan,” said Saifuddin.
The foreign minister added that Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, who is also in the Malaysian delegation to the 74th UNGA, will be involved in a series of meetings here pertaining to the SDG Summit.
“The lead agency when it comes to SDG is the Ministry of Economic Affairs.
“Datuk Seri Azmin will also be attending high level dialogues on financing for development.
“In all, the Malaysian delegation has 90 meetings in the pipeline here,” said Saifuddin.