UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’s Message on Nelson Mandela International Day 18 July 2019

On this day, we pay tribute to an extraordinary global advocate for dignity and equality, and one of the most iconic and inspirational leaders of our time.  Nelson Mandela exemplified courage, compassion and commitment to freedom, peace and social justice.  He lived by these principles and was prepared to sacrifice his liberty and even his life for them.

Nelson Mandela’s calls for social cohesion and an end to racism are particularly relevant today, with hate speech casting a growing shadow around the world.  As we work collectively for peace, stability, sustainable development and human rights for all, we would be well served to recall the example set by Nelson Mandela.

Our best tribute is found in actions.  Nelson Mandela’s message to the world is clear.  Every one of us can step up and act for enduring change.  We all have the duty to do so.  On this day of reflection on Nelson Mandela’s life and work, let us embrace his legacy and aspire to emulate his example.