Human Rights, democracy

25 March 2021, General Assembly

Remarks at General Assembly event marking the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade

Today we honour the memory of the millions of people of African descent who suffered immeasurably under the evil of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade.

We remember with humility the resilience of those who endured.

And we acknowledge the immense contributions slaves and their descendants have made to the economies and culture of the countries to which they were forcibly transported.

25 March 2021, General Assembly

Remarks at General Assembly event marking the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade

Today we honour the memory of the millions of people of African descent who suffered immeasurably under the evil of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade.

We remember with humility the resilience of those who endured.

And we acknowledge the immense contributions slaves and their descendants have made to the economies and culture of the countries to which they were forcibly transported.

29 March 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks at Generation Equality Forum, Mexico

[All-English version; Scroll down for Spanish, as delivered version]

I thank President Obrador for launching this Generation Equality Forum, in Mexico City and virtually, across the world.

My thanks go also to the Governments of France and Mexico and all other participants.

Twenty-six years ago, feminists, activists and young people focused collective action on achieving gender equality through the historic Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.

You continue to drive progress toward that goal.

16 March 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks at Town Hall with Civil Society during the 65th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women 

Secretary-General António Guterres holds a virtual townhall meeting with Women's Civil Society participants during the Commission on the Status of Women. UN Photo/Loey Felipe

Dear friends. Good morning, good afternoon, good evening.

It is a great pleasure to join you today. My priority is not to answer questions, it is to listen; to hear your opinions, to hear your suggestions; and of course, to be able to incorporate them in our thinking and policies.

But first, please allow me to say a few words about the past year and what it has meant for progress on women’s rights and gender equality.

08 March 2021, UN Headquarters

Opening remarks at virtual dialogue with the Group of Friends of Gender Parity

Excellencies,
Ladies and gentlemen,
Friends of gender parity,

Happy International Women’s Day!

Let me thank the Ambassadors Ms. Sheikha Alya Ahmed bin Saif Al-Thani and Ms. Valentine Rugwabiza and the Missions of Qatar and Rwanda for your leadership and commitment to advancing gender parity.

International Women’s Day is an opportunity to celebrate what has been achieved towards realizing women’s rights; and to mobilize around overcoming the remaining challenges.

22 February 2021, UN Headquarters

Message to the Opening of the 46th Regular Session of the Human Rights Council 

[All English version; scroll down for bilingual as delivered and French versions]

Distinguished President of the Human Rights Council,
Madam High Commissioner,
Excellencies,
Ladies and gentlemen,

Human rights are our bloodline; they connect us to one another, as equals.

Human rights are our lifeline; they are the pathway to resolving tensions and forging lasting peace.

Human rights are on the frontline; they are the building blocks of a world of dignity and opportunity for all – and they are under fire every day.

24 February 2021, General Assembly

General Assembly Briefing on the Call to Action for Human Rights

[All-English version; scroll down for bilingual, as delivered version]

Excellencies,
Ladies and gentlemen,

Exactly one year ago, I launched a Call to Action to reaffirm the centrality of human rights to our mission — and to place human dignity at the core of our work.

Echoing the words of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Call to Action affirmed fundamental freedoms as the “highest aspiration for the common people”.

18 February 2021, ECOSOC

Remarks to 2021 ECOSOC Meeting on “Reimagining Equality: Eliminating Racism, Xenophobia and Discrimination for All in the Decade of Action for the SDGs”

[Bilingual; as delivered]

Excellencies,

Ladies and gentlemen,

Racism plagues our world.

It is abhorrent.  It is ugly.  And it is everywhere. 

We must condemn it without reservation, without hesitation, without qualification. 

Racism is the repudiation of our common humanity — of the Charter of the United Nations — of all that we are and all that we do.

We must reject racism.

But we have a long way to go.  It is a challenge and struggle for us all. 

05 February 2021, UN Headquarters

Opening press remarks on selection of Libyan Political Dialogue Forum of unified temporary executive authority

Ladies and Gentlemen of the press, good afternoon.
 
Today we have very good news in our search for peace. I welcome the selection by members of the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum (LPDF) of a unified temporary executive authority.
 
I call on all members of the dialogue and the Libyan and international stakeholders to respect the results of the vote.
 

04 February 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks at the 2021 Opening Session of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People

I was very honoured to preside over the beginning of this year’s first meeting of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. 

My congratulations to the Chair, Ambassador Cheikh Niang, and other members of the Bureau, on your election.

Excellencies,

The unresolved question of Palestine underlines the continued importance of the Committee.

This is affirmed by the General Assembly’s adoption, last December and by large majorities, of all the resolutions on the question of Palestine recommended by the Committee.