Back here at home, we are getting ready for the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly. It opened today. And as you all know, next week is high-level week, and we look forward to being a part of that here at the State Department.
Whether international sanctions succeed or fail depends on the difference between words and deeds. Sanctions are just words on a page unless they are effectively enforced. Russia originally called for this meeting to discuss the implementation of sanctions against North Korea.
Good afternoon distinguished ladies and gentlemen and thank you Mr. Secretary.
I am grateful for the many friends, family, and colleagues who are here today – literally from around the nation and the world.
States have the obligation to respect an individual’s exercise of human rights and fundamental freedoms as set forth in international law. In practice, the rights of expression and movement are closely interrelated. States that unduly restrict one tend to unduly limit the other, often denying freedom of movement in reprisal for peaceful dissent.
The Helsinki Final Act recognizes the right of the individual to act alone or in community with others. In Copenhagen in 1990, the participating States reaffirmed their commitment “to ensure effectively the rights of the individual … to contribute actively, individually or in association with others” to the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, including peaceful assembly and association.
SECRETARY POMPEO: Good afternoon, everyone. The United States anticipates processing up to 310,000 refugees and asylum seekers in Fiscal Year 2019. We propose resettling up to 30,000 refugees under the new refugee ceiling, as well as processing more than 280,000 asylum seekers. They will join the over 800,000 asylum seekers who are already inside the United States and who are awaiting adjudication of their claims.
On this International Day of Democracy, the United States reaffirms its unwavering belief in democracy as the form of government with the greatest capacity to advance peace, prosperity, and security, and to safeguard the universal human rights, fundamental freedoms, and dignity of every person. Enshrined in our own Constitution are bedrock principles essential to the success of any democracy, including freedom of expression, the right to peaceful assembly, respect for the rule of law, and a commitment to the peaceful transfer of political power through free and fair elections.
Let me begin by expressing my delegation’s appreciation to High Commissioner on National Minorities Zannier and his office and note we look forward to his visit to the United States next month. The HCNM has a well-earned reputation for independence, objectivity, and practical approaches to problem-solving.
It has been 15 years since the adoption of the Action Plan on Roma and Sinti. As a guide for the participating States, the OSCE institutions, and field missions, the Action Plan remains an important tool in our common effort to improve the situation of Roma. We are grateful to the Romanian government for the role it played in shepherding the drafting of the Action Plan.
SECRETARY POMPEO: Before I get started, I want to let our fellow Americans know who are affected by Hurricane Florence that our prayers are with them. I understand there may well have been loss of life.