Tag Archives: UN Secretary-General’s Message

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’s Message on World Oceans Day: “Our Oceans, Our Future”, 8 June 2017

 The oceans make our home a blue planet.  The oceans regulate climate, generate oxygen, and provide ecosystem services, energy and minerals. The life teeming below their surfaces and along the shorelines is a source of food and medicines.   Oceans connect all of us, linking people and nations in cultural ties, and they are essential for sharing goods and services across the world.  The importance of our oceans to every single living being on our planet cannot be overstated. Today, we celebrate all that the oceans give us, and reaffirm our commitment to being good stewards.

On this World Oceans Day, we look to the future.  Caring for, and using, our oceans in sustainable ways is critical to achieve ecological and economic goals for communities everywhere.  However, the future of our oceans is burdened by numerous threats – such as climate change and ocean acidification, pollution, unsustainable and destructive fishing practices, – and the lack of capacities to address these threats.  Continue reading

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Message on Human Rights Day – 10 December 2016

hrd-logoAs United Nations Secretary-General over the last decade, I have repeatedly stressed the interdependence of the three pillars of the United Nations — peace, sustainable development and human rights. Together, they form the basis of resilient and cohesive societies rooted in inclusion, justice and the rule of law.

I have also underscored that human rights are at the heart of the work and identity of the United Nations. This understanding is at the core of our Human Rights up Front initiative. Continue reading

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Message on International Volunteer Day, 5 December 2016

featured-image-sgmessage  Volunteers work tirelessly to create a better future for all. They contribute to national well-being and show global solidarity at times of crisis. We see this in action all over the world, most notably over the past year as volunteers have provided shelter and wide-ranging support to millions of refugees forced from their homes by armed conflict and persecution.

Volunteers help to eliminate poverty and reduce the impact of disasters. In Haiti, we saw the efforts of thousands during the recent floods, helping to re-build devastated communities. In Sri Lanka, volunteers were instrumental in achieving the great feat of eradicating malaria. In Mali and Colombia, UN Volunteers are among those working to achieve peace. Continue reading

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Message on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, 3 December 2016

idpd-logo-rev-4-300Ten years ago this month, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.  One of the most widely ratified international human rights instruments, with 169Parties, the Convention has spurredsignificant progress in commitment and action for equality, inclusion and empowerment around the world, with disability being increasingly incorporated into the global human rights and development agendas.

This year, United Nations Member States have embarked on implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, our blueprint for peace, prosperity, dignity and opportunity for all on a healthy planet.  With its 17 interdependent Sustainable Development Goals, the 2030 Agenda is based on a pledge to leave no one behind.  Achieving this requires the full inclusion and effective participation of persons with disabilities in society and development. Continue reading

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Message on World AIDS Day, 1 December 2016

featured-image-indexThirty-five years since the emergence of AIDS, the international community can look back with some pride but we must also look ahead with resolve and commitment to reach our goal of ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030.

There has been real progress in tackling the disease. More people than ever are on treatment. Since 2010, the number of children infected through mother-to-child transmission has dropped by half. Fewer people die of AIDS-related causes each year. And people living with HIV are living longer lives.

The number of people with access to life-saving medicines has doubled over the past five years, now topping 18 million. With the right investments, the world can get on the fast-track to achieve our target of 30 million people on treatment by 2030. Access to HIV medicines to prevent mother-to-child transmission is now available to more than 75 percent of those in need. Continue reading

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Message on the International Day of Non-Violence: 2 October 2016

gunEvery year on the International Day of Non-Violence, we re-commit ourselves to the cause of peace, as exemplified by the life of Mahatma Gandhi who was born on this day 147 years ago.

We know that a culture of non-violence begins with respect for others, but it does not end there.  To nurture peace, we must respect nature.  I am pleased this year’s International Day of Non-Violence puts the focus on sustainability and the environment.

In all he did, Gandhi honoured our obligation to all living things.  He reminded us that “Earth provides enough to satisfy everyone’s needs, but not everyone’s greed.”   Gandhi also challenged us to “be the change we wish to see in the world”. Continue reading

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Video Message for Eid Al-Adha

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moonNew York, 12 September 2016:

Assalam Alaikum. Eid al-Adha is a celebration of sacrifice for the common good, family and community, and compassion and solidarity with the least amongst us. At a time when societies face complex challenges — violent conflict, displacement, division – let us draw on our common humanity to build a better world for all.  I wish all Muslims around the world a blessed and peaceful Eid.  Eid Mubarak.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Message on International Literacy Day: 8 September 2016

173378This year, the world the world has embarked on implementing the ambitious and transformational 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.  With its 17 universal, integrated and interdependent Sustainable Development Goals, the 2030 Agenda is an action plan for people, planet, partnership and peace.

Literacy stands at heart of the 2030 Agenda.  It is a foundation for human rights, gender equality, and sustainable societies.  It essential to all our efforts to end extreme poverty and promote well-being for all people.  That is why the Sustainable Development Goals aim for universal access to quality education and learning opportunities throughout people’s lives.

One of the targets of Sustainable Development Goal 4 is to ensure that all young people achieve literacy and numeracy and that a substantial proportion of adults who lack these skills are given the opportunity to acquire them. Continue reading

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Message on World Humanitarian Day, 19 August 2016

featured-image-sgmessageA record 130 million people are dependent on humanitarian assistance to survive.  Grouped together, these people in need would comprise the tenth most populous nation on Earth.

These figures are truly staggering, yet they tell only a fraction of the story.  Hidden behind the statistics are individuals, families and communities whose lives have been devastated.  People no different to you and me: children, women and men who face impossible choices every day.  They are parents who must choose between buying food or medicine for their children; children who must choose between school or working to support their families; families who must risk bombing at home or a perilous escape by sea.

The solutions to the crises that have plunged these people into such desperate hardship are neither simple nor quick.  But there are things we can all do – today, and every day.  We can show compassion, we can raise our voices against injustice, and we can work for change. Continue reading

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Message on International Youth Day 2016

featured-image-sgmessageThe world’s young people – who make up the largest generation of youth in history – can lead a global drive to break the patterns of the past and set the world on course to a more sustainable future. Young people are directly affected by the tragic contradictions that prevail today: between abject poverty and ostentatious wealth, gnawing hunger and shameful food waste, rich natural resources and polluting industries. Youth can deliver solutions on these issues, which lie at the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

In this first year of that15-year plan for a healthier, safer and more just future, we count on the active engagement of the world’s young people to transform the production and consumption of goods and services so they meet the basic needs and aspirations of the world’s poorest people without overburdening already strained ecosystems. Continue reading