THE SECRETARY-GENERAL REMARKS AT OPENING OF COP24
Katowice, 3 December 2018
Excellencies, Distinguished delegates, Ladies and gentlemen, Welcome to COP 24.
I thank President Duda, Minister Kowalczyk and COP President Designate Mijal Kurtyka for their warm welcome. We are in trouble. We are in deep trouble with climate change.
Climate change is running faster than we are and we must catch up sooner rather than later before it is too late.For many, people, regions even countries this is already a matter of life and death.
This meeting is the most important gathering on climate change since the Paris Agreement was signed. It is hard to overstate the urgency of our situation.
Even as we witness devastating climate impacts causing havoc across the world, we are still not doing enough, nor moving fast enough, to prevent irreversible and catastrophic climate disruption. More
MESSAGE ON THE INTERNATIONAL DAY
OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES
3 December 2018
More than 1 billion people in the world live with some form of disability. In many societies, persons with disabilities often end up disconnected, living in isolation and facing discrimination.
In its pledge to leave no one behind, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development represents a commitment to reducing inequality and promoting the social, economic and political inclusion of all, including people with disabilities. That means implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, in all contexts and in all countries. It also means integrating the voices and concerns of people with disabilities into national agendas and policies.
Today, the United Nations is issuing the UN Flagship Report on Disability and Development 2018 – Realizing the SDGs by, for and with persons with disabilities. The Report shows that people with disabilities are at a disadvantage regarding most Sustainable Development Goals, but also highlights the growing number of good practices that can create a more inclusive society in which they can live independently.
On this International Day, let us reaffirm our commitment to work together for a better world that is inclusive, equitable and sustainable for everyone, where the rights of people with disabilities are fully realized.
STATEMENT BY UN SECRETARY-GENERAL ANTONIO GUTERRES ON THE OUTCOME OF THE G20 SUMMIT IN ARGENTINA
Today’s G20 Declaration underscored three key messages.
First, it reaffirmed support to the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, our global blueprint for a fair globalization that leaves no one behind; and pledged to use all policy tools to achieve strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth.
Second, G20 leaders, stressed the need to raise ambition in the fight against climate change and expressed their very strong support of countries that are signatories to implement their commitments set out in their nationally determined contributions. Agreement on the Paris Work Programme at COP 24 in Katowice – essentially the rule book for implementation – will significantly advance implementation.
Third, G20 leaders recognized the importance of a multilateral approach to trade and of the reform of the World Trade Organization and renewed their commitment to a rules-based international order.
These agreements by the leaders of the world’s 20 largest economies, which also contribute the largest share of global green-house gas emissions, can help rally the international community to make sure that climate change is a race we can win. Indeed, it is a race we must win.
1 December 2018
The long-term warming trend has continued in 2018, with the average global temperature set to be the fourth highest on record. The 20 warmest years on record have been in the past 22 years, with the top four in the past four years, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
Other tell-tale signs of climate change, including sea level rise, ocean heat and acidification and sea-ice and glacier melt continue, whilst extreme weather left a trail of devastation on all continents, according to the WMO provisional Statement on the State of the Climate in 2018. It includes details of impacts of climate change based on contributions from a wide range of United Nations partners. More
MESSAGE ON WORLD AIDS DAY
1 December 2018
Thirty years after the first World AIDS Day, the response to HIV stands at a crossroads. Which way we turn may define the course of the epidemic—whether we will end AIDS by 2030, or whether future generations will carry on bearing the burden of this devastating disease.
More than 77 million people have become infected with HIV, and more than 35 million have died of an AIDS-related illness. Huge progress has been made in diagnosis and treatment, and prevention efforts have avoided millions of new contaminations.
Yet the pace of progress is not matching global ambition. New HIV infections are not falling rapidly enough. Some regions are lagging behind, and financial resources are insufficient. Stigma and discrimination are still holding people back, especially key populations— including gay men and other men who have sex with men, sex workers, transgenders, people who inject drugs, prisoners and migrants—and young women and adolescent girls. Moreover, one in four people living with HIV do not know that they have the virus, impeding them from making informed decisions on prevention, treatment and other care and support services.
There is still time — to scale-up testing for HIV; to enable more people to access treatment; to increase resources needed to prevent new infections; and to end the stigma. At this critical juncture, we need to take the right turn now.
REMARKS ON THE INTERNATIONAL DAY OF SOLIDARITY WITH THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE
28 November 2018
More than forty years ago, the General Assembly established an International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people to remind us of our collective, unfinished task of resolving the question of Palestine.
Over the decades, this has become one of the most intractable challenges for the international community, and we know only too well the tragic results.
Demolitions, illegal continued settlement expansion and construction, forced evictions and collective punitive measures will not bring peace.
The same goes for violence and incitement, and similarly, unilateral steps will not resolve final status issues or the conflict.
Violence against women and girls is not only a fundamental human rights issue but also a “moral affront” against them and a “mark of shame” on all societies, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has said, calling greater action by everyone around the world to root out the scourge. More
Friday’s historic conviction by a United Nations-backed international tribunal of two former Khmer Rouge leaders in Cambodia on genocide charges has been welcomed by the UN Special Adviser on the issue.
In a statement, Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, Adama Dieng, described the conviction by a UN-backed international tribunal in Cambodia as “a good day for justice”, adding that “it demonstrates that justice will prevail, and that impunity should never be accepted for genocide and other atrocity crimes.”
UN humanitarian agency the World Food Programme (WFP) has appealed for access to a key storage facility in the port of Hudaydah, which is now under the control of a Saudi-led military coalition that supports the internationally recognized Government. More