New York, 20 September 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks to Appeal of Conscience Foundation Annual Awards Dinner [as prepared for delivery]Your Excellency, President Lee Myung-bak, My good friend, Rabbi Schneier, Excellencies, Ladies and gentlemen,
Good evening to you all.
Rabbi Schneier, I want to thank you and the Appeal of Conscience Foundation for your leadership.
At a time of too much division in the world, too much discord, you stand strong for our most cherished values: Religious freedom. Human rights. Human dignity. Tolerance and understanding.
That is what our world needs. You give them life each and every day.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
This is a time of great churning, challenge and change. I believe that world leaders recognize the gravity of the moment. Leaders like President Lee Myung-bak.
As a Korean, I am especially pleased to see President Lee receive this prestigious Appeal of Conscience Foundation Award tonight. I applaud President Lee's leadership in building an ever stronger and more advanced nation.
As Secretary-General of the United Nations, I am even more proud of his commitment to building a Global Korea – a Korea that reaches out and engages deeply with the wider world.
As challenges grow, we need the Republic of Korea across the full spectrum of our UN agenda – from advancing sustainable development to building sustainable peace.
Often when I travel, Korea is held up as a model – especially in Africa. The story of my country is one of change and inspiring transformation – from poverty to prosperity, and from repression to robust democracy. This gives Korea a special obligation to help poorer nations have the same opportunities and a better future.
President Lee embodies that Korean spirit of resilience, compassion and hard work. Along with so many millions of Koreans, he grew up in poverty in a Korea destroyed by war.
Today he presides over one of the leading economies of the world and hosted the most recent G-20 Summit of global economic powers.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Let me also thank all of you for your commitment.
We cannot build a world worthy of our children's dreams unless everyone does their part.
Governments, yes. But leaders ? doers ?people of conscience everywhere.
Thank you for summoning the best in each of us to build a better world for all of us.
Statements on 20 September 2011
- New York, 20 September 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks to "Every Woman, Every Child" Event
- New York, 20 September 2011 - Statement by the Secretary-General on the death of Prof. Burhanuddin Rabbani, Chairman of the High Peace Council, former President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, on 20 September 2011
- New York, 20 September 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks at G8 Meeting on the Deauville Partnership [as prepared for delivery]
- New York, 20 September 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks at High-Level Event on Scaling up Nutrition
- New York, 20 September 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks at UN Private Sector Forum on Sustainable Energy for All [delivered on his behalf by Deputy Secretary-General, Asha-Rose Migiro]
- New York, 20 September 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks at High-Level meeting on Libya
- New York, 20 September 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks at High Level Meeting on Desertification
- New York, 20 September 2011 - Le Secrétaire Général - Allocution Prononcée à la Conférence Ministérielle Informelle de la Francophonie Consacrée aux Grandes Transitions Politiques en cours dans la Francophonie [French version as delivered - scroll down for English]