Foreign Minister John Baird addresses the 67th United Nations General Assembly at the U.N. headquarters in New York Oct. 1, 2012. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird says the United Nations need to rediscover its priorities.
Addressing the UN General Assembly on Monday, Baird told the audience the "United Nations must spend less time looking at itself and more time focused on the problems that demand its attention."
"The preoccupation with procedure and process must yield to tracking of substance and results," he said. "If the UN focuses on the achievement of goals - such as prosperity, security and human dignity - then reform will take care of itself."
Baird added that Canada's permanent mission at the international body would shift its attention to achieving results through its work at the UN, and not on the organization's process and procedure.
"You measure results by measuring results," Baird said. "Not by weighing best efforts, not by counting good intentions."
The foreign affairs minister also targeted the UN over its failure to bring an end to the ongoing crisis in Syria and used the platform to call on Iran to comply with its international nuclear obligations.
The Conservative government has been critical with the international organization, but a spokesman for Baird said Canada will maintain current funding levels to the UN as is. Canada is the seventh-largest contributor to the organization.
Last week, Prime Minister Stephen Harper sparked criticism for refusing an invitation to address its annual gathering of world leaders.
In 2010, Canada lost its bid for a seat at the UN Security Council, which was widely perceived as a slight against the country by the international community.