Director Valda Vikmanis-Keller
Office of Space Affairs in the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs
New York, New York
October 28, 2022
I would like to first thank Mr. Omran Sharaf, Chair of the Committee of the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, as well as the Office for Outer Space Affairs for your continued work in advancing the significant contributions of this Committee to the responsible and safe use of space.
As the only standing body of the United Nations concerned exclusively with the peaceful uses of outer space, COPUOS has spent the past six decades working tirelessly to foster international cooperation in the peaceful exploration and ever-expanding use of outer space to benefit all of humanity.
The work of the Committee and its two subcommittees is more important now than ever, as evidenced by the on-going efforts to implement the 21 guidelines for the long-term sustainability of outer space activities and the recently established Working Group on Legal Aspects of Space Resource Activities of the Legal Subcommittee. My delegation would also like to extend our thanks to Mr. Umamaheshwaran of India for his leadership in the LTS working group, and we look forward to participating in the upcoming
November intersessional meeting in Vienna. The LTS and Space Resources working groups are just a few examples of the extensive efforts within the Committee to provide opportunities for member states to discuss how best to implement the principles established by the 1967 Outer Space Treaty.
The United States reaffirms its belief that the principles contained in the Outer Space Treaty, as well as other applicable international obligations, guide the full range of governmental and private sector space activities. These include space debris mitigation, the long-term sustainability of outer space activities, and space resource utilization – all important areas of international cooperation where this Committee has primary responsibility within the UN system.
We also look forward to further discussion with the Committee on the Artemis Accords, which is a shared endeavor between the United States and twenty other nations to establish a common vision through a practical set of principles, firmly grounded in the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, on how to enable a safe and transparent outer space environment for all of humanity. We welcome all who have committed to these principles and encourage other nations to do the same.
Thank you Mister Chair.