Ban Ki-moon

16 December 2016, New York

Note to Correspondents: The Controversy between Guyana and Venezuela [scroll down for Spanish version]

Fifty years ago, shortly before Guyana’s independence in 1966, the Geneva Agreement was signed with the aim  of amicably resolving the controversy that had arisen as the result of the Venezuelan contention that the Arbitral Award of 1899 about the frontier between Venezuela and what is now Guyana is null and void.  The 1966 Geneva Agreement confers on the Secretary-General of the United Nations the power to choose means of settlement of the controversy from among those that are contemplated in Article 33 of the United Nations Charter.

16 December 2016, New York

Board of Inquiry into the incident involving a UN-Syrian Arab Red Crescent relief operation to Urum al-Kubra

The Board of Inquiry into the incident involving a UN-Syrian Arab Red Crescent relief operation to Urum al-Kubra on 19 September submitted its report to the Deputy Secretary-General this afternoon.  

The Secretary-General will examine it very carefully over the next few days.  We owe it to the victims of the incident and to their courageous humanitarian colleagues who risk their lives every day to help those in need to clarify what happened.  Only by doing so will it be possible to learn the lessons from this incident and help prevent any repetition of it. 

16 December 2016, New York

Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on the controversy between Guyana and Venezuela [scroll down for Spanish version]

The Secretary-General has informed President David Granger of the Republic of Guyana and President Nicolás Maduro of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela of his conclusions on what constitute the most appropriate next steps for the resolution of the controversy between the two countries.

16 December 2016, United States of America

Ban Ki-moon: The world has betrayed South-Sudan

This year marks the fifth anniversary of the world’s newest country, South Sudan. I attended the 2011 independence celebrations in the capital city of Juba. Hopes were high that the long-suffering people of the oil-rich country would finally see the fruits of a peace dividend after a prolonged civil war. Instead, the people of South Sudan now face a more dismal anniversary. This week marks three years since the country plunged into fighting with a terrible and mounting toll.

via Newsweek International (US): newsweek.com

16 December 2016, New York

Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Burkina Faso [scroll down for French version]

The Secretary-General condemns today's attack against a military post in Nassoumbou, province of Soum in the north of Burkina Faso, in which Burkinabè soldiers were killed and injured. He extends his deepest condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government and people of Burkina Faso and wishes a speedy and full recovery to the injured.

16 December 2016, New York

UN Secretary-General's remarks at the Council on Foreign Relations [as prepared for delivery]

Mr. Richard Haass, President of the Council on Foreign Relations, Rabbi Arthur Schneier, President of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation, Distinguished members of the Council on Foreign Relations, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

16 December 2016, New York

Secretary-General's briefing to the Security Council on the Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question [as delivered]

Today, I report to the Security Council for the last time on the Situation in the Middle East. 

It saddens me that my last such briefing brings no sense of optimism for the future. 

Some may ask why, given all the crises in the region, I chose to address the Council on the question of Palestine. 

To them, I say that while the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not the cause of the wars in the Middle East, its resolution can create momentum for peace throughout the region.

16 December 2016, New York

UN Secretary-General's remarks at press conference (with Q&A)

It is a great pleasure to see you this morning. Usually we gather at this time around this year but now we meet at the end of my term. 

Believe it or not, I will miss these exchanges.  We have spent much time together in this room, in the halls of this building and around the world over the last ten years.  You are part of the UN family. And I thank you for your strong commitment and working together, working for the United Nations. 

16 December 2016, Warsaw, Poland

Secretary-General's message to the Warsaw Dialogue for Democracy

I am pleased to send warm greetings all participants at the Warsaw Dialogue for Democracy.  I thank you for coming together to discuss challenges that have never been more acute than they are today.
 
In too many places, democracy is under assault.  Authoritarian rule has deepened.  Civil society and media face increasing restrictions.
 
At the same time, we face violent extremism, unacceptable gaps between rich and poor, and the highest levels of displacement of people since the Second World War.
 

16 December 2016, New York

Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Guinea-Bissau [scroll down for French version]

The Secretary-General is following developments regarding the formation of a new Government in Guinea-Bissau closely, notably the decisions taken by President José Mário Vaz in this regard on 12 December 2016 and the statement by the Partido Africano da Independência da Guiné e Cabo Verde (PAIGC) of 13 December 2016, distancing itself from the new Cabinet.