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United Nations Day 24 October 2009

General Assembly President's Message

Remarks by H.E. Mr. Joseph Deiss
President of the Sixty-Fifth Session of the United Nations General Assembly
on the Occasion of the UN Day Concert, 22 October 2010

Mr. Secretary-General,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am pleased and honoured to welcome you tonight in the General Assembly Hall to listen to the United Nations Day Concert. I warmly thank you, Mr. Secretary-General, and your wife, Mrs. Ban Soon-taek, as well as the Government and Permanent Mission of the Republic of Korea for making this beautiful tradition possible.

The theme of this year’s UN Day concert is the Millennium Development Goals. This is an excellent occasion to recall that a month ago exactly, world leaders convened in this Hall to take stock of progress in implementing the Millennium Development Goals. They reconfirmed their strong commitment to significantly reduce poverty and improve the lives of millions of poor people worldwide by 2015.

With the adoption of the Millennium Development Goals in 2000, we expressed our solidarity with the most vulnerable. We demonstrated that all the peoples of the United Nations form a single community and that no one has the right to remain indifferent to abject poverty and the suffering of others.

We gave great hope to millions of men and women. We now have to unite our efforts to meet these expectations and to keep our promise. This is our moral duty. In so doing, we will make a significant contribution to global peace, security and prosperity, the primary mission of the United Nations.

Such solidarity, which is at the core of the Millennium Development Goals, is also essential when musicians perform. Personal issues must be set aside and people must work cooperatively in order to produce beautiful music.

Like musicians who play their part in the orchestra and who transform the hesitations at rehearsal and the cacophony at tuning in perfect harmony during the concert, so shall we, the peoples of the United Nations, work for the greater good in a spirit of cooperation and consensus.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Music brings us together across cultures and borders to promote peace and harmony. The one who sings does not argue, the one who plays an instrument does not carry a weapon.

To use Plato’s words, we should now let music give soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.

Thank you.