Following are UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s remarks at the opening of the UN-Women office in Buenos Aires today:
Today I am very happy to witness this very important signing ceremony of intent to establish a UN-Women office here in Buenos Aires. We have 20 United Nations Funds and Programmes and Agencies offices here. It will now add one more, but [a] very important organization. This is an historic day.
This country is a pioneer for women’s political participation. A quarter of a century ago, Argentina [concluded] the first quota law in the world.
As Secretary-General, I have had many important priorities, but gender empowerment, gender equality, has been one of the top priorities and during my time I am very proud that we have established UN-Women in 2010 with the full blessing and support of the international community and Member States of the UN.
While the Argentinian Government has been making great strides in enhancing women’s empowerment, there are many challenges around the world. Based on discrimination and marginalization of women and girls. Based on social tradition or depriving the opportunities, equal opportunities, for decent jobs and education wherever it may be. Therefore, we have to eradicate these kind of practices which are still happening all around the world.
I commend Argentina for standing strong for women’s human rights. I sincerely hope that, with the signing of this letter of intent to establish the UN office here, this will bring a greater gender equality across disciplines with women contributing in fields that were traditionally dominated by men.
Finally, I commend highly and appreciate the vision and commitment, leadership, of Mauricio Macri for his continuing commitment for gender empowerment. Also the very distinguished Foreign Minister, Susana Malcorra. I hope you will make sure that this letter of intent will be fully and smoothly implemented, whereby we can see much bigger increase in gender empowerment in this country and in the region.