SECRETARY-GENERAL EXPRESSES INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY'S INTEREST IN HAITI'S DEMOCRATIC FUTURE, AT DINNER HOSTED BY PRESIDENT ARISTIDE
SECRETARY-GENERAL EXPRESSES INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY'S INTEREST IN HAITI'S DEMOCRATIC FUTURE, AT DINNER HOSTED BY PRESIDENT ARISTIDE19951017
Following is the translation of the toast proposed by Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali at the dinner hosted by President Jean-Bertrand Aristide on Saturday, 14 October, in Port-au-Prince:
I should like first of all to say what a great pleasure it is for me to be once again among you, at this dinner.
I should, in particular, like to thank you, Mr. President, for the warmth of your welcome and the quality of your hospitality, which my wife and I particularly appreciate.
The dinner this evening is for us, above all, a dinner of friendship. And I should therefore like to enjoy with you only the pleasure of this reunion.
I should nevertheless like to say a few words in tribute to your commitment and your determination in the service of the Republic of Haiti. And I should like to tell you, very simply but most sincerely, that each of you is to be congratulated on the cooperation which has been established between the authorities of your country and the international institutions which are working beside you.
I have long been convinced that democratization is one of the essential objectives of the world Organization. It is in this spirit that, as the United Nations is celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of its Charter, I have decided to submit a report on this topic for discussion by the States Members of the United Nations.
But I must tell you, Mr. President, that the example of collaboration which has been established with your country has greatly enriched our experience and has given me much food for thought.
From this standpoint, therefore, I believe that, while the international community has served the cause of democratization in Haiti, the Republic of Haiti, in turn, has served the cause of democratization in the world.
- 2 - Press Release SG/SM/5765 HI/56 17 October 1995
More than ever, I am convinced that democratization cannot be reduced merely to institutions or procedures, but that it is, more profoundly, a state of mind and a culture.
This is how I conceive the action which we must take. What would elections be without the civic conscience of the people? What would pluralism be without the accountability of the parties? What would the rule of law be without the spirit of tolerance and reconciliation?
What Montesquieu once called "the democratic virtues" still, more than ever, constitute the political foundation of a stable and lasting regime, respectful of public liberties and of the security of its citizens.
I am convinced, Mr. President, of your profound commitment to these democratic virtues. It is this which inspires the confidence which I place in you and in the future of your country.
We are well aware that, in these present times, the Republic of Haiti must clear some decisive stages. In the circumstances, I should like once again this evening to tell you what a keen interest the entire international community takes in the democratic future of your country and how closely it feels involved in it.
It is therefore a message of hope which I wished to bring you. A message which is addressed to you personally, to all the Haitian people and to all those men and women in your country who act in the name of the noble ideals proclaimed, 50 years ago, by the founding fathers of the Charter of the United Nations.
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