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News > Statement by H.E. Kazem Gharib Abadi Before the 56th Scientific and Technical subcommittee of COPUOS

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Statement by H.E. Kazem Gharib Abadi Before the 56th Scientific and Technical subcommittee of COPUOS

In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful


Madam Chair,                

At the outset, I would like to thank you for your leadership over the subcommittee. I assure you Madam Chair of our full cooperation and support for your endeavors. I also wish to extend my appreciation to, Madam Simonetta Di Pippo, distinguished Director of UNOOSA, and the Secretariat for their excellent efforts.

While aligning myself with the statement of the Group of 77 and China delivered by H.E. Ambassador of Egypt, I would like to raise the following points in my national capacity.


 Madam Chair,Distinguished delegates,

The Islamic Republic of Iran, as one of the 24 founding members of the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space in 1958, continues to reaffirm the universally agreed principle that outer space is the common heritage and province of all mankind and must be explored and utilized exclusively for peaceful purposes and for the benefit of the present and future generations.

 We also firmly believe in other agreed principles, including, that outer space shall be free for exploration, use and access by all States, on the basis of equality; the principle of non-ownership of any part of outer space be fully respected; non-discriminatory cooperation in outer space activities be promoted; and non-intervention and non-interference in activities of States in exploring and utilizing outer space for peaceful purposes be fully observed. In this regard, to ensure a peaceful outer space environment, prevention of its weaponization and arms race therein is an essential and urgent priority.

There is no doubt that space is a pivotal driver for socio-economic growth in many arenas. For instance, space technologies and their applications contribute to addressing the challenges in the field of climate change and natural disasters such as flood, dust storms and drought, which now constitute serious problems in Iran and other countries in West Asia. According to the National Disaster Management Organization (NDMO) data, Iran is geographically located in one of the most seismically active  parts of the world, being crossed by several major faults, which together with flooding potentials, covering  a vast area of the country . In this vein, following the peaceful space activities and programs, including satellites launches, to meet its dire needs, is vital for the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Madam Chair,

Recognizing the common interest of all mankind in the progress of the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes, the Islamic Republic of Iran has always believed and emphasized that such activities shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interest of all countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific and technological development. In this regard, capacity-building activities organized under the United Nations Programme on Space Applications should be considered as unique and commendable step that has been taken to meet the needs of developing countries. However, in order to promote an equitable sharing and free dissemination of space knowledge and awareness of the benefits obtained, in particular for the use of developing countries, a new capacity should be established under the auspices of UNOOSA and its relevant outreach activities should be strengthened.

 My delegation firmly believes that the space emerging countries should benefit from the technical assistance and capacity-building in space science, knowledge and technology application; therefore, we should take concrete and tangible steps to promote and facilitate the transfer of know-how, technology and equipment, under the auspices and support of UNOOSA as a unique platform in the field of peaceful space activities.

Madam Chair,

We are of the view that the international cooperation should be an essential component of the peaceful space activities, especially in developing countries, and it is essential for the extensive plan of pursuing the sustainability in space activities as a common objective of all . The international cooperation in scientific and technical aspects of the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes will, indeed, contribute to, among others, the development of common understanding and to the strengthening of friendly relations among Member States.

Madam Chair,

In this context, we have the same concerns about the increase of space debris and its impacts on sustainable use of outer space. Learning lessons from the sustainable development goals process, we believe that in addressing this concern, the principle of "Common but Differentiated Responsibility" should be applied; that is to say that, it is a common concern, and therefore, a common responsibility of all States; however, clearly those who have mainly created the space debris, they should have the exclusive responsibility for their removal. This principle also recognizes historical differences in the contributions of developed and developing States to outer space problems, and acknowledges differences in their respective economic and technical capacity to tackle these problems. In our view, all issues related to the space debris need to be considered thoroughly, taking into account the same concerns and interests of all States, and agreed by consensus.

Madam Chair,

Space Science and technology and their applications may contribute to relevant aspects of sustainable development particularly in developing countries,. In this regard, the small-satellites missions are becoming increasingly vital in building up and supporting the capacities in the developing countries, taking advantages of the relevant scientific and technological advancement.

Having said that and considering the essential roles of small satellites in the socio-economic development of the Member States, we are of the view that no ad-hoc legal regime -soft or hard- or any other tools or mechanisms should be created which might impose limitations on the designing, building, launching and using of small satellites, and, as “ Space Objects”, in legal sense, they are subject to the same legal and regulatory obligations and regime as all other space objects and should not be singled out or be subject to specific rules and regulations.

Madam Chair,

Due to the fact that Iran is subject to various types of natural disasters, and considering the advantages of space technology and remote sensing, Iranian Space Agency has made extensive efforts in this regard to manage the natural disasters and has supported the UN-SPIDER program via establishing a regional support office since 2009.  Likewise, a system of monitoring to combat the spread of sand and dust storms was established. This project is related to the system called “Earth observation”, which focuses on forest fire detection, snow mapping, cloud, water bodies and dust storms distribution in Alborz Space Center.

 Recently at our UN-SPIDER Regional Support Office, we are working on a project to provide technical documents for sand and dust storms monitoring, by using archived satellite imagery for developing countries. The results would provide the latest database of information on sand and dust storms conditions and management in Iran and the neighboring countries. However, in order to enrich SPIDER knowledge portal, Iran’s Regional Support Office is fully prepared to enhance cooperation with UNOOSA and its programs, and establish a center for addressing sand and dust storms using space-based technologies. My delegation would like to acknowledge the effort of UNOOSA Director and the UN-SPIDER staff and express its sincere appreciations to them for all kindly efforts and cooperation regarding the past disasters in my country.

To conclude, my delegation, would like to ensure you, Madam Chair, of its full support in achieving the noble objectives of the Committee on peaceful uses of outer space.

I thank you, Madam Chair.

22:17 - 17/02/2019    /    Number : 558260    /    Show Count : 30


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