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Speech by Ambassador Tang Guoqiang, Head of Chinese Delegation to the 49th Session of Committee On Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) and Permanent Representative of Chinese Permanent Mission to the UN and Other International Organizations in Vienna On the Unveiling Ceremony of Permanent Display of the UN Flag Carried by Shenzhou V Spacecraft


2006/06/21

Distinguished Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna Mr. Antonia Maria Costa, distinguished Chairman of the Committee on the Peaceful uses of Outer Space (Copuos) Mr. Gerard Branchet and honorable members of the Bureau, distinguished Director of the Office for Outer Space Affairs Mr. Sergio Camacho Lara, distinguished Ambassador Lu of People's Republic of China to the Federal Republic of Austria, honorable delegates of attending the 49th session of the Copuos, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,

Good evening.

First of all, I would like to extend to all of you my warmest welcome to this ceremony organized by the United Nations and China on the permanent display of the United Nations flag carried by China's Shenzhou V Spacecraft into space.

While many people have made their contributions, special thanks should go to Mr. Antonia Maria Costa. His dedication to the Chinao-UN cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space, and especially his assistance in helping China realize its wish to carry the UN flag by its first manned spacecraft, Shenzhou V, are particularly commendable.

I am also deeply grateful to Mr. Sergio Camacho and his colleagues who have closely worked with the Chinese Permanent Mission in Vienna to smooth out all relevant details concerning this arrangement. Their excellent skills and valuable experiences in dealing with these highly technical matters laid a solid foundation for the success of the mission.

The complete success of the first Chinese manned spacecraft flight by Shenzhou V is more than just a Chinese event. I am happy to note that many countries, especially the developing countries, have conveyed their warm congratulations to us on that occasion. They shared the great joy and excitement of the Chinese people over this magnificent feat. Their special interest in and continuous support for China's peaceful exploration of the outer space have fully demonstrated that, in the field of outer space, the achievements accomplished by one country belong not only to itself, but also to the entire international community.

The 21st century witnesses the flourishing of space science, technology and their applications. More and more countries have come to realize the need for international cooperation to explore outer space, given the complexity, high cost and tremendous risk involved in outer space activities. The cooperative approach can be very productive in meeting the needs of human society by expanding the exploration and peaceful uses of outer space and advancing the development of space science, technology and their applications. We all know that COPUOS operates as a unique forum for encouraging and promoting international cooperation in the conduct of outer space activities at the global level, and we have every reason to believe that COPUOS will do its utmost to further strengthen the international legal regime governing outer space, thus creating a more favourable condition for the expansion of international cooperation in space activities.

China consistently supports all the UN activities in the field of

the peaceful uses of outer space. We are looking forward to furthering our exchange of information and international cooperation under the aegis of the UN, with countries committed to the peaceful uses of outer space for the benefit of the humankind, thus contributing to the sustainable social and economic development and the progress in human civilization through the exploration and peaceful uses of outer space.

Ladies and gentlemen and my dear friends,

This seemingly simple UN flag displayed here carries a great significance which should not be underestimated. This flag signifies the fruitful China-UN cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space and symbolizes the courage and determination of the developing countries to make unremitting efforts in exploring outer space. It also testifies to the historical endeavour of the Chinese people to peacefully explore outer space for the common interests of mankind. The flag carries with it the ardent expectation of the 1.3 billion Chinese people that the UN will achieve its objectives of safeguarding world peace, promoting the human development and expanding international cooperation. Let us joint our hands to build a harmonious world under the aegis of the UN where everyone will enjoy peace and development.

Thank you for your attention.

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