United Nations: Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has called upon the UN to build a more equal international order, saying that "the might of powerful nations cannot prevail".
Rajapaksa made the remarks here Friday as he was speaking at the general debate of the 65th session of the UN General Assembly, with the theme of the role of mediation in settling disputes by peaceful means, reported Xinhua.
"The might of powerful nations cannot prevail against justice and fair play," the president said, adding that at the heart of dramatic changes of world order lies "the need to protect smaller countries in the developing world and to advance their interests vigorously."
Rajapaksa said every country's values, traditions and religious convictions cannot be diluted or distorted by the imposition of alien cultures under the guise of human rights.
"If this were done, it would amount to a violation of human rights in a fundamental sense," Rajapaksa said.
He urged the international community to take into account the vulnerability of developing nations and protect them by means of appropriate institutional arrangements.
"Dumping of commercial and industrial goods manufactured in developed countries imperils the economies of many Asian and African countries represented here," Rajapaksa said.
He pointed out that developed countries' substantial subsidies to support agricultural production and other forms of protectionism, have caused serious distortion of the interplay of market forces, and reduced to a great extent the ability of farmers in many developing countries to access international markets for their export products on an equitable basis.
Rajapaksa also talked about the disproportionate environmental pollution by industrialised countries and the resultant impact on global warming and climate change.
He said that these impacts "cannot be remedied with any semblance of justice by imposing harsh restraints on developing countries which have contributed very little to aggravation of the problem".
"These circumstances heighten the importance of social equity at the international level," Rajapaksa said.
First Published: Saturday, September 24, 2011, 23:26