21 September 2018

Amid Prolific Suffering, Insecurity, ‘We Will Not Give Up’ to Achieve Human Rights, Fair Development, Secretary-General Says on International Peace Day

Following are UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ remarks at the Peace Bell ceremony on the occasion of the thirty-seventh anniversary of the International Day of Peace, in New York today:

It is for me an enormous pleasure to be with all of you during this International Day for Peace.  We are here because we are determined and we do not give up.

We see conflicts multiplying everywhere in the world.  We see links between conflicts and terrorism.  We see insecurity prevailing.  We see people suffering.  But we don’t give up.

We know that when we appeal for combatants to have a pause to respect this day, we know that many will not respect it.  But we don’t give up.

When we are celebrating the seventieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, we know that human rights are violated in so many parts of the world, we even know that the human rights agenda is losing ground.  But we don’t give up because respect for human rights and human dignity is a basic condition for peace.

It is true that extreme poverty is being reduced but we see inequality growing.  But again, we don’t give up because we believe inequality is one of the most important factors of instability and conflict.  So, we will pursue our Agenda, the 2030 Agenda, the Sustainable Development Goals, our struggle for a fair globalization because there is no development without peace but there is also no peace without development.

We will not give up.  Peace is the unifying concept that brings us together at the United Nations.  Peace is at risk.  Peace is violated in so many places.  But we will not give up.

Thank you for your determination and thank you for your strong commitment for our common cause.

For information media. Not an official record.