Tag Archives: Secretary General’s Message

International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Secretary-General’s Message for 2018

Twenty-five years ago, the world commemorated the first International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. Since then, nearly 1 billion people have escaped poverty, thanks to political leadership, inclusive economic development and international cooperation.

However, many are still being left behind. Over 700 million people are unable to meet their basic daily needs. Many live in situations of conflict and crisis; others face barriers in accessing health care, education and job opportunities, preventing them from benefiting from broader economic development. And women are disproportionately affected.

Eradicating poverty in all its forms and dimensions, as embodied in Goal 1 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, remains one of the greatest global challenges and a major priority for the United Nations.

This year, as we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, let us remember that ending poverty is not a matter of charity but a question of justice. There is a fundamental connection between eradicating extreme poverty and upholding the equal rights of all people.

We must listen to the millions of people experiencing poverty and destitution across the globe, tackle the power structures that prevent their inclusion in society and address the indignities they face. We must build a fair globalization that creates opportunities for all and ensure that rapid technological development boosts our poverty eradication efforts. On this International Day for the Eradication of Poverty let us commit to uphold the core pledge of the 2030 Agenda to leave no one behind.

António Guterres

Secretary General’s Message on World Press Freedom Day 2018

A free press is essential for peace, justice and human rights for all. It is crucial to building transparent and democratic societies and keeping those in power accountable. It is vital for sustainable development.

Journalists and media workers shine a light on local and global challenges and tell the stories that need to be told. Their service to the public is invaluable.

Laws that protect independent journalism, freedom of expression and the right to information need to be adopted, implemented and enforced. Crimes against journalists must be prosecuted.

On World Press Freedom Day 2018, I call on governments to strengthen press freedom, and to protect journalists. Promoting a free press is standing up for our right to truth.

Thank you.

António Guterres


U N I T E D   N A T I O N S                                    N A T I O N S   U N I E S

THE SECRETARY-GENERAL

MESSAGE FOR HUMAN RIGHTS DAY

10 December 2017

This year’s commemoration of Human Rights Day marks the beginning of a year-long celebration of seven decades since the adoption of one of the world’s most profound and far-reaching international agreements.  The Universal Declaration of Human Rights establishes the equality and dignity of every human being and stipulates that every government has a core duty to enable all people to enjoy all their inalienable rights and freedoms.

All of us have a right to speak freely and participate in decisions that affect our lives.  We all have a right to live free from all forms of discrimination.  We have a right to education, health care, economic opportunities and a decent standard of living.  We have rights to privacy and justice.  These rights are relevant to all of us, every day.  They are the foundation of peaceful societies and sustainable development.

Since the proclamation of the Universal Declaration in 1948, human rights have been one of the three pillars of the United Nations, along with peace and development.  While human rights abuses did not end when the Universal Declaration was adopted, the Declaration has helped countless people to gain greater freedom and security.  It has helped to prevent violations, obtain justice for wrongs, and strengthen national and international human rights laws and safeguards.

Despite these advances, the fundamental principles of the Universal Declaration are being tested in all regions.  We see rising hostility towards human rights and those who defend them by people who want to profit from exploitation and division.  We see hatred, intolerance, atrocities and other crimes.  These actions imperil us all.

On this Human Rights Day, I want to acknowledge the brave human rights defenders and advocates, including UN staff, who work every day, sometimes in grave peril, to uphold human rights around the world.  I urge people and leaders everywhere to stand up for all human rights – civil, political, economic, social and cultural — and for the values that underpin our hopes for a fairer, safer and better world for all.

Secretary General’s Message on International Day of Friendship 30 July 2014

SG-BanKi-moon-OfficialPortrait This year’s International Day of Friendship comes at a time of widespread war, violence and mistrust  in many parts of the world. People who have previously lived in harmony find themselves in conflict with their neighbours; people who have no choice but to live together find themselves ever farther apart.

Whatever the cause, and however powerful the forces that drive animosity and armed violence, the human spirit is potentially much stronger. It is our solemn duty to see that it prevails.

In these difficult and unpredictable times, it is vital that we reach out to another in order to prevent conflict and build the long-term foundations of lasting peace.

On this International Day of Friendship, let us remember the ties that bind us together, regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or borders. Let us cultivate solidarity as a single human family on our one and only planet. Let us pursue true and lasting friendship.