During the first meeting between the President of the FIDH, Souhayr Belhassen and the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Ban Ki-Moon affirmed his desire to work closely with the FIDH for the protection and promotion of Human Rights.
Taking the seriousness of the situation into account, the Secretary-General gave assurances once again that Myanmar (Burma) was one of his priorities. He intends to mobilise all his powers of influence, especially in China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore, as well as in Thailand and the Philippines. He emphasised his ‘steadfast determination to make every effort’ to remedy the situation in that country.
The Secretary-General also considers the situation in Darfur to be the first priority of his mandate. He spoke of his hope regarding some recent developments concerning the deployment of the ‘hybrid force’1 and the progress of the political negotiations in view of the conference of 27th October.
The FIDH President denounced the scandal of the two Sudanese accused by the International Criminal Court (ICC) where one was released and the other promoted, pointing out that the Court’s enquiry, called upon by the Security Council, was being flouted. Replying to her concerns, the Secretary-General emphasised that "justice is a condition of peace" and "peace and justice are indivisible". He undertook to continue working with the Sudanese government to promote cooperation with the ICC.
The Secretary-General also reaffirmed his desire to operationalise the principle of the responsibility to protect recognised by the General Assembly a year ago.
On the eve of the World Day Against the Death Penalty, the Secretary-General repeated his commitment to its abolition and expressed his support for the adoption of a universal moratorium by the General Assembly.
Finally Mr. Ban Ki-Moon declared that he "shared the concerns" of the FIDH about the Human Rights situation in Iran, and encouraged the Federation in its mobilisation of the International Community’s Member States to condemn the deterioration of this situation.
The Secretary-General also thanked the FIDH for its contribution to the work of the United Nations, stressing the ‘noble’ and ‘fundamental’ character of its commitment, declaring that the important perspective of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 2008 would be an important occasion to uphold the struggle in which they were engaged.