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Statement on United Nations Reforms

December 22, 1986

On December 19 the United Nations General Assembly took an historic step to adopt sweeping reforms of its organization and methods of operation. These reforms are designed to strengthen the organization's effectiveness and efficiency in carrying out its important political, economic, and social objectives. Our success in reaching this agreement reflects the recognition by all member States of the need to restore and strengthen that capability in order for the United Nations to fulfill the promise of its founding principles and continue to act as a force for international peace, freedom, and progress. With the support of Congress, my administration has long advocated such reforms, so we are very pleased that these measures have finally been adopted. I am particularly gratified that the reforms include agreement to use consensus in deciding on budget levels and program priorities. This new procedure will assure broad-based support for the vital programs and activities of the United Nations around the world.

In my speech to the General Assembly in September, I spoke of the crisis of confidence that was facing the United Nations and urged the member States to seize the moment to turn the rhetoric of reform into reality in order to secure the future of the United Nations. And I said that if the necessary reforms were adopted, the United States, "which has always given the U.N. generous support, will continue to play a leading role in the effort to achieve its noble purposes." The United Nations is important to the United States, and we are committed to working closely with other member States and with the Secretary-General to see that the reforms are faithfully implemented and to secure the organization's future.

Ronald Reagan, Statement on United Nations Reforms Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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