UN role and reform

11 February 2008, General Assembly

Remarks to the General Assembly High-Level Thematic Debate: “Addressing Climate Change: the United Nations and the world at work”

Allow me to begin by adding my voice to all who pray for the full and speedy recovery of Timor-Leste’s President, Jose Ramos-Horta, after the brutal and unspeakable attack he suffered yesterday. We stand in solidarity with the Government and people of Timor-Leste, in the hope that peace and stability will prevail, and thank Australia for its swift contribution to this end.

We meet at a crucial juncture in our collective efforts to address climate change. If 2007 was the year when climate change rose to the top of the global agenda, 2008 is the time we must take concerted action.

04 February 2008, UN Headquarters

Remarks at the signing ceremony for senior managers’ compacts

Thank you all for being here.  With this ceremony, we confirm the goals that each one of you will endeavour to reach during 2008, based on priorities set by Member States.  I am grateful to every one of you for your commitment in developing your compacts.

23 January 2008, Geneva

Remarks to the memorial ceremony for United Nations colleagues who perished in the Algiers bombing

I stand before you today humbled in tribute to the colleagues we have lost. Humbled by their courage, dedication and sacrifice. Humbled before their loved ones, who have lost so much and who have bravely travelled long distances to be with us today. Humbled by the task of doing justice to the memory of our irreplaceable friends.

The truth is, we can never really do justice to those we have lost. We can only miss them and mourn them. We can only unite in grieving for what is too hard to endure alone.

10 January 2008, UN Headquarters

Statement to regional groups of Member States

I am grateful for this opportunity to address you so early in the new year.

The year 2008 provides a unique opportunity to enhance the central role of the United Nations in world affairs. A number of developments align to make this so: the sixtieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the midpoint in the work to reach the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the high-level meeting on financing for development; the climate change negotiations; the unprecedented peacekeeping operation in Darfur.

07 January 2008, UN Headquarters

Opening remarks at news conference

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. First of all, I would like to send my best wishes for a very happy, healthy and prosperous New Year. I hope that New Year 2008 will bring to all of you and your families best wishes, happiness and prosperity. It has been a great privilege for me to work with you during last year, my first year, and I count on continuing such a good relationship and friendship and exchange of ideas, including constructive criticism, even. Thank you very much.

By tradition, this is the season for taking stock – and for looking ahead.

21 November 2007, UN Headquarters

Briefing to an informal meeting of the General Assembly on key issues of interest to Member States

I am grateful for this opportunity to bring you up to date on some of the wide-ranging issues of interest to Member States -- from climate change, the budget and the Capital Master Plan to the Middle East, Myanmar and Darfur.

Allow me to begin with a few observations from my recent travels.

Last week could be called a moment of epiphany on climate change -- for me personally, as I visited South America and Antarctica, and for the international community, with the launch of the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

17 November 2007, Valencia

Remarks at the signing of the agreement between the Government of Spain and the United Nations on the Valencia logistics base

Buenos dias!

I want to thank the Government of Spain for its generous offer to host a new United Nations logistics base here in Valencia

I welcome the successful conclusion of negotiations the text of the agreement on the use of the premises. This agreement and other administrative agreements will need to be duly considered and approved by the United Nations General Assembly and the Government of Spain.

25 October 2007, UN Headquarters

Remarks to the Fifth Committee of the General Assembly on the proposed programme budget for the biennium 2008-2009

It’s a great pleasure to be here this morning. You may have heard me say, at the opening of the general debate, that I expect the year ahead to be among the most challenging in our history. I am confident that, together, we can also make it one of the most successful.

Our work begins, in earnest, with this proposed programme budget of $4.2 billion, broadly in line with what the General Assembly has approved. It represents real growth of $23 million over the previous biennium, or half a percentage point.

24 October 2007, General Assembly

Remarks at the United Nations Day concert

Happy United Nations Day, everyone, and welcome to our common House, the United Nations! I am glad that so many of you could make it. Surely, there could be no better way than music to commemorate this Day –- United Nations Day. Because this is a day when the UN family comes together not only as nations, but as human beings united in our quest for a better world.

25 September 2007, General Assembly

Address to the 62nd General Assembly: "A Stronger UN for a Better World"

Mr. President,

Distinguished Heads of State and Government,


Ladies and Gentlemen:

Congratulations on your election, Mr. President. Welcome, all, to New York in this beautiful autumn season.

It is a pleasure and an honor to be with you, at this opening of the general debate of our 62nd General Assembly. I expect the year ahead to be among the most challenging in our history. And I am sure that, together, we can make it one of the most successful.