18 April 2001
SECRETARY-GENERAL, IN MESSAGE TO KIEV CONFERENCE ON CHERNOBYL DISASTER,
Following is the message of Secretary-General Kofi Annan to the conference “Fifteen Years After the Chernobyl Accident, Lessons Learnt”, delivered on his behalf by the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Kenzo Oshima, in Kiev on 18 April:
It is a pleasure to send my greetings to all of you who have gathered for this important conference that will take stock of the lessons learnt 15 years after the Chernobyl accident.
In the 10 years it has been engaged with Chernobyl, the United Nations system has endeavoured to address the diverse effects of this terrible accident. Therefore, we look forward with interest to the forthcoming exchange of views, which will help all of us to draw valuable lessons for the future, not only for the people affected by the Chernobyl disaster, but also to ensure that such a tragic event will never recur.
I trust that this conference will provide ideas on how to strengthen emergency preparedness worldwide and to address the recovery needs of the contaminated areas, which continue to be affected by the consequences of the Chernobyl disaster.
Solidarity, transparency and understanding must prevail for humanity to prevent and cope effectively with industrial accidents, as well as other types of emergencies.
The future of our children is at stake. With this in mind, I wish you success in your deliberations.
* *** *