Lavrov Seeks Revival Of Global Coalition

UNITED NATIONS — Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called on Saturday for a revival of the global coalition that brought the world together to fight terrorism after Sept. 11, 2001, but started unraveling after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq and what he called the subsequent domination of world affairs by a single power — a veiled reference to the United States.

"The solidarity of the international community fostered on the wave of struggle against terrorism turned out to be somehow 'privatized,'" Lavrov told the UN General Assembly's annual ministerial meeting.

He cited the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq as being "under the false pretext of a war on terror and nuclear arms proliferation" and questions of excessive use of force against civilians in counterterrorism operations in Afghanistan. And he said the recent crisis over Georgia's breakaway provinces of Abkhazia and South Ossetia proved again that "it is impossible or even disastrous to try to resolve the existing problems in the blindfolds of the unipolar world."

"Today, it is necessary to analyze the crisis in the Caucuses from the viewpoint of its impact on the region and the international community on the whole," Lavrov said.

"The world has changed again," he said. "It has become crystal clear that the solidarity expressed by all of us after 9/11 should be revived through the concepts cleared of geopolitical expediency and built on the rejection of double standards when we fight against any infringements upon the international law — be it on the part of terrorists, belligerent political extremists or any others."

Lavrov called for new "solidarity" among the international community and a strengthened United Nations, saying that only in the post-Cold War era can the world body "fully realize its potential" as a global center "for open and frank debate and coordination of international policy on a just and equitable basis free from double standards."

"This is an essential requirement, if the world is to regain its equilibrium."

Declaring that Europe's security framework "did not pass the strength test" in Georgia, Lavrov reiterated President Dmitry Medvedev's proposal in June for a new treaty on European security.

It would strengthen peace and stability and participants would reaffirm the nonuse of force, peaceful settlement of disputes, sovereignty, territorial integrity and noninterference in another country's affairs, he said. Finally, he added, it would promote "an integrated and manageable development across the vast Euro-Atlantic region."

Lavrov said work on the new treaty could be started at a pan-European summit and include governments as well as organizations working in the region. He referred to it as "a kind of Helsinki-2," a follow-up to the 1975 Helsinki Treaty among all European nations, the United States and Canada, which evolved into the present-day Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the largest conflict-prevention and security organization on the continent.