Speech by H.I.M. HAILE SELASSIE I
California 28th February 1968
"Last May, in Addis Ababa there was convened a meeting of Heads of African States and Governments. In three days, the thirty-two nations represented at that Conference demonstrated to the world that when the will and the determination exist, nations and people of diverse back rounds can and will work together in unity for the achievement of common goals and the assurance of that equality and brotherhood which we desire"
"Although our position vis-à-vis the power-blocs is identified with the policy of non-alignment, our past history testifies to the fact that we have always endeavored to cooperate with all nations, without exception. Thus, one of the fundamental principles we have agreed upon at the Addis Ababa Summit Conference give expression to our fundamental desire to live in harmony and cooperation with all States"
"On the question of racial discrimination, the Addis Ababa Conference taught, to those who will learn, this further lesson:"
"that until the philosophy which holds one race superior and another inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned; that until there is no longer any first-class and second-class citizens of any nation; that until the color of a man's skin is of no more significance than the color of his eyes; that until the basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all, without regard to race -- until that day, the dreams of lasting peace and world citizenship and the rule of international morality will remain but a fleeting illusion, to be pursued but never attained. And also, that until the ignoble and unhappy regimes that hold our brothers in Angola, in Mozambique and South Africa in subhuman bondages have been toppled and destroyed; until bigotry and prejudice and malicious and inhuman self-interest have been replaced by understanding, tolerance and good-will; until all Africans stand and speak as free beings, equal in the eyes of all men as they are in Heaven -- until that day the African continent will not know peace. We Africans will fight, if necessary and we know that we shall win, as we are confident in the victory of good over evil."
"The United Nations has done much, both directly and indirectly, to speed the disappearance of discrimination and oppression from the earth. Without the opportunity to focus world opinion on Africa and Asia which this Organization provides, the goal might, for many, still lie ahead, and the struggle would have taken far longer. For this we are truly grateful."
Royal Palace Addis Abba
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