72 UNGA: Statement by H.E. Mrs. Anayansi Rodríguez Camejo, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of Cuba to the United Nations under item 15: "Culture of Peace". New York, 8 December 2017.

Mr. Chairman,

The Agenda Item 15 of the General Assembly reminds us that peace is not only a goal to be fulfilled but a supreme objective to be preserved.

There can be no peace without full respect for the sovereignty of States; and there can be no peace without respect for the self-determination of peoples and the territorial integrity of States.

Violence must be brought to an end, life must be respected, dialogue and cooperation must be considered, and emphasis must be placed on education and the transmission of values for peace.

Cuba notes with concern that the deep fault line that divides human society between the rich and the poor and the ever-increasing gap between the developed and developing world pose a major threat to global prosperity, peace and security and stability.

We are convinced that in order to preserve and promote peace, the policies of States must focus on removing the threat of war, particularly nuclear war, the commitment to the peaceful settlement of international disputes and the respect and promotion of the right to development.

In promoting and developing a culture of peace it is necessary to condemn all acts, methods and practices of terrorism, including State terrorism, and to take concrete actions to fight this scourge.

Mr. Chairman,

We note with concern that there are persistent phenomena such as intolerance and discrimination on ethnic, religious or racial grounds; the threat and use of force; the promotion of covert change of regime agendas, promoted by great powers in developing countries that do not bend to their designs; the development of new and more sophisticated weaponry; the persistence of large nuclear arsenals. All of this compromises the real possibilities of advancing a culture of peace.

Putting an end to the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States against Cuba would be an action in favor of peace and the peaceful settlement of differences.

Mr. Chairman,

Peace can only be reproduced if it responds to a set of values, attitudes, traditions, behaviors and lifestyles: to a genuine culture of peace.

Cuba believes that education is the pathway to contributing to the promotion of a culture of peace through the inclusion of the study of various cultures and civilizations in teaching programs, including languages, history and socio-political philosophy, as well as the exchange of knowledge and information on these subjects.

Furthermore, we highlight the role of mass media in disseminating human values and the need to contribute to mutual respect among civilizations by means of an ethical conduct.

We reaffirm that peace is a fundamental requirement for the promotion and protection of all human rights of all people.

Finally, we reiterate the full validity of the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace, adopted by the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States in January 2014; as well as the Declaration and Program of Action on a Culture of Peace.

Thank you very much.