HE the Speaker of the Advisory Council Ahmed bin Abdullah bin Zaid al-Mahmoud affirmed that Qatar believes that peace and sustainable development are interdependent and inseparable, which requires United Nations agencies and regional and international organisations, including the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), to work together to address them together.
In his speech before the 139th IPU General Assembly being held in Geneva under the title "Parliamentary Leadership in Promoting Peace and Development in an Era of Innovation and Technological Change", HE al-Mahmoud said that conflicts, wars, displacement and migrations to which human population is exposed to are a result of the failure to achieve economic development and the absence of stability and justice. From this perspective, Qatar has always been calling for addressing the root causes of global problems and not only their manifestations, he stressed.
HE al-Mahmoud added that despite the fact that efforts to achieve sustainable development have led to a rapid modernisation of science and technology and the progress of human society, they have also had negative effects, including non-traditional cyber security threats and interrelatedness with traditional security threats, which pose a danger to international peace and security.
In this context, he noted that some of those who have been devising intrigues against human gains have used modern technology to violate the sovereignty of countries and destabilise their security and economy through spreading lies and spying on countries and tempering with their currencies. In this regard, he pointed to the damage inflicted on Qatar and other countries as a result of hacking and digital espionage and the abuse of technology and modern science by some countries, stressing that those who misuse cyber technology everywhere must be held accountable.
Al-Mahmoud pointed to His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani's address to the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly last September, where the Amir proposed an international conference to regulate the use of digital and information technology in accordance with an international law governing this area, and expressed Qatar's readiness to work with United Nations agencies to organise it legally as well as its willingness to host this conference.
In this regard, he called on the parliaments' meeting in Geneva to link the call for the use of modern technology to the promotion of peace and development, provided that international peace and security are not harmed, which requires to criminalise cybercrime against the sovereignty of States and the threat to their security and stability.
Due to the importance of this, he said, the third meeting of the heads of parliaments of Europe and Asia, which took place last week in Antalya, Turkey, welcomed the call made by the Amir to regulate the freedom of use of digital and information technology, and to hold an international conference on this issue, which Qatar is willing to host.
HE the Speaker of the Advisory Council said: "We, in Qatar under the leadership of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, consider that human development is our national capital and our renewable wealth, and we consider the education and participation of youth as the first line of defense for the collective security system, a matter which makes us attach great importance to education, research and technology.
"In order to achieve these objectives, the Advisory Council has been discussing and deliberating throughout its successive sessions the legislations for knowledge-based sustainable development and linking it to peace and stability and to protecting human rights and dignity not only in Qatar but also in the world", al-Mahmoud pointed out.
For this purpose, Qatar has launched numerous initiatives locally and abroad to support education, foster innovations and inventions such as the Qatar Innovation Community, Education above All, and Protect Education in Insecurity and Conflict, he said, pointing to Qatar's pledge to provide quality education for 1mn girls by 2021 announced by the Amir at the UN headquarters in New York, in addition to its pledge to educate 10mn children, provide the economic empowerment for half a million young people in the region, sponsor Unesco projects and co-operate with the United Nations in implementing projects to promote youth employment through capacity building and launching programs to prevent extremism.
Al-Mahmoud said: “In our Arab region there are many issues from which we continue to suffer, primarily the Palestinian cause. We and the Palestinian people in particular are suffering as a result of Israeli occupation and aggression, as a result of Israel's failure to comply with international resolutions and as a result of its rejection of a two-state solution and the establishment of a Palestinian state on 1967 border with East Jerusalem as its capital, leading to instability in the region, the succession of wars and the destabilisation of security and stability.
He added that there is no solution to the problems except with justice and respect for the dignity and rights of the human being, which is what the Palestinian people are denied in their own homeland.
He added, in this sense an additional item was proposed on the agenda of the meeting to support the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), to which Qatar has recently provided $50mn supporting its budget.
Concluding, HE al-Mahmoud expressed hope that this meeting would come up with resolutions stressing the need to take advantage of science and technology and to hold accountable those who misuse modern technologies, and that the IPU should take a leading role in advocating reform of the UN system, and that the goal of all is to work for the good of the human beings and to protect their rights.
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