United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres arrived in Auckland, New Zealand, kicking off a weeklong trip to the Pacific region where he will be calling for action on climate change. After meeting with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, the Secretary-General hailed the partnership between New Zealand and the United Nations.
Secretary-General’s remarks to Māori and Pasifika youth at event hosted by James Shaw, New Zealand Minister for Climate Change Auckland, 13 May 2019
Dear friends, it is an enormous pleasure to be here with some of the members of Generation Zero representing the very important leadership that youth around the world is providing to make sure that we are able to reach our central objective: not to have more than 1.5 degrees of increasing temperature at the end of the century.
The international community , and especially the scientific community, has been very clear that to reach this goal we absolutely need to have carbon neutrality by 2050. I’m extremely grateful to the leadership of New Zealand in this regard and extremely grateful to the leadership to the youth in New Zealand in this regard.
I’m confident that youth around the world will be able to convey to their governments a very clear message which is the message that I would like to convey here from the Pacific.
First, shift taxes from salaries to carbon. We must tax pollution not people.
Second stop subsidies to fossil fuels. Taxpayers’ money should not be used to boost hurricanes, to spread drought and heat waves, to bleach corals or to melt glaciers.
Finally, stop the construction of new coal plants by 2020. We want a green economy not a grey economy in the world.
It is very important that around the world young people, civil society and those that in the business community have understood that the green economy is the economy of the future and the grey economy has no future, it’s very important that you convince governments that they must act because there’s still a lot of resistance.
I went to Katowice not one, but three times, and I felt that resistance. Governments are still afraid to move forward. They feel the costs of climate action forgetting that the costs of inaction are much bigger than any costs of climate action. It’s very good to see – as we know, that nature does not negotiate – it’s very good to see youth in the frontline and I’m delighted to be with you here today and to learn from you, what you want us to do.
Thank you very much for your presence and it’s very important that your own government recognizes you’re a very important influence in what has been the exemplary New Zealand leadership in this regard.
Video message from H.E. António Guterres , United Nations Secretary General, on World Press Freedom Day 2019.
A free press is essential for peace, justice, sustainable development and human rights.
No democracy is complete without access to transparent and reliable information. It is the cornerstone for building fair and impartial institutions, holding leaders accountable and speaking truth to power.
This is especially true during election seasons — the focus of this year’s World Press Freedom Day.
Facts, not falsehoods, should guide people as they choose their representatives.
Yet while technology has transformed the ways in which we receive and share information, sometimes it is used to mislead public opinion or to fuel violence and hatred.
Civic space is been shrinking worldwide at an alarming rate.
And with anti-media rhetoric on the rise, so too are violence and harassment against journalists, including women.
I am deeply troubled by the growing number of attacks and the culture of impunity.
According to UNESCO, almost 100 journalists were killed in 2018.
Hundreds are imprisoned.
When media workers are targeted, societies as a whole pay a price.
On World Press Freedom Day, I call on all to defend the rights of journalists, whose efforts help us to build a better world for all.
Statement by the Secretary-General
A “disturbing groundswell” of hate-based violence and intolerance aimed at worshippers across all faiths, must be countered soon before it’s too late, the United Nations Secretary-General said on Monday, noting murderous attacks in just the past few days on a synagogue in California, and a church in Burkina Faso.
International Day of Multilateralism and Diplomacy for Peace
24 April 2019
This first observance of the International Day of Multilateralism and Diplomacy for Peace underscores the value of international cooperation for the common good. For nearly 75 years, the multilateral arrangements established after the Second World War have saved lives, expanded economic and social progress, upheld human rights and, not least, helped to prevent a third descent into global conflagration. From the articulation of international law to the advancement of gender equality, from protecting the environment to limiting the proliferation of lethal weapons and deadly disease, multilateralism and diplomacy have a proven record of service to people everywhere.
But such cooperation cannot be taken for granted. This new International Day falls at a time when multilateral efforts are under pressure from unresolved conflicts, runaway climate change, widening inequalities and other threats. New technologies are creating diverse opportunities but also the potential for disruptions to job markets, social cohesion and the enjoyment of our rights. We are living with a paradox: global challenges are more connected, but our responses are growing more fragmented. We are seeing an increasing deficit of trust in governments, political establishments and international organizations, and the rising appeal of nationalist and populist voices that demonize and divide. This is very dangerous in the face of today’s challenges, for which collective action is essential.
In this difficult context, we need to recall the urgency felt by the founders of the United Nations and reinvigorate the Organization’s tools. The principles of working together endure, but the specifics must take account of our rapidly changing world. We need stronger commitment to a rules-based order, with an effective United Nations at its centre. We need a networked multilateralism, with close cooperation among international and regional organizations, including development banks. And since governments and international organizations cannot do it alone, we need an inclusive multilateralism, rooted in partnerships with the business community, civil society, parliaments, the academic and philanthropic communities and other stakeholders, in particular young people.
But it is not enough to proclaim the virtue of multilateralism; we must prove its added value. Nor is it acceptable to dismiss the doubters; we must show that multilateralism can respond to global anxieties and deliver a fair globalization that lifts all.
The United Nations Charter points the way, with its vision of people and countries living as good neighbors, defending universal values and recognizing our common future. Strengthening multilateralism means strengthening our commitment to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and building a safer, more just world for future generations. That commitment is needed now more than ever – from the United Nations and from leaders and citizens everywhere.
Message From The Secretary-General
World Health Day
7 April 2019
This World Health Day focuses on universal health coverage and the crucial role primary health care plays in making such coverage a reality.
Half the world’s population is still unable to obtain the essential health services they need. Universal Health Coverage is about changing this and ensuring equitable access to health services for all, without people experiencing financial hardship as a result.
This is central to building healthy societies and economies and to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. And it is not just about improving health services. It is about policies and action across many sectors. We need to address the broader determinants of health, including social, economic and environmental factors.
And we must invest in people. We need highly trained and skilled health workers who can educate and advocate for their patients. We need empowered individuals who know how to take care of their health and that of their families. And we need communities to have access to health care when and where they need it. We must also highlight the importance of mental health, so often stigmatized and forgotten.
Primary health care is the key to achieving these goals and universal health coverage. Last year’s Astana Declaration has paved the way for the world to prioritize the investments we need. Now it is time to implement the commitments made.
Health is a human right. Political commitment and partnerships will be crucial in bringing it to life. Let us show the world that we are ready to bridge the gaps in health coverage worldwide and deliver health for all.
The Secretary-General is shocked and appalled at the terrorist attack at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. He extends his deepest condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government and people of New Zealand.
The Secretary General recalls the sanctity of mosques and all places of worship. He calls upon all people on this holy day for Muslims to show signs of solidarity with the bereaved Islamic community.
The Secretary-General reiterates the urgency of working better together globally to counter Islamophobia and eliminate intolerance and violent extremism in all its forms.
Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General
New York, 15 March 2019
The Secretary-General was deeply saddened at the tragic loss of lives in the airplane crash today near Addis Ababa. He conveys his heartfelt sympathies and solidarity to the victims’ families and loved ones, including those of United Nations staff members, as well as sincere condolences to the Government and people of Ethiopia.
The United Nations is in contact with the Ethiopian authorities and working closely with them to establish the details of United Nations personnel who lost their lives in this tragedy.
Spokesman for the Secretary-General
10 March 2019
THE SECRETARY-GENERAL REMARKS AT OPENING OF COP24
Katowice, 3 December 2018
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
From conflict and economic downturn to disease and climate change, global problems require “more than ever” a strengthening of international cooperation, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres told world leaders at the Paris Peace Forum on Sunday, commemorating 100 years since the end of the First World War. More