Human Rights, democracy

01 December 2020, General Assembly

Remarks at General Assembly Solemn Meeting in Commemoration of All Victims of the Second World War

This year, we marked the 75th anniversary of the United Nations with tributes to the Organization’s achievements and calls to strengthen multilateralism to meet longstanding and new challenges.  
But our observance of this milestone would not be complete without recognition of the losses of the Second World War, which led to the formation of the United Nations itself.  

The millions who fell on the battlefield; 

The millions murdered by the Nazis in the Holocaust; 

01 December 2020, UN Headquarters

Remarks at the commemoration of the 25th Anniversary of the World Summit for Social Development

Excellencies, distinguished delegates,

I am pleased to join you in commemorating the twenty-fifth anniversary of the World Summit for Social Development. 

It is a critical time to reflect on what it will take to ensure equality for all and achieve the goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

There is no denying that the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated pre-existing gaps in social development.

It has wiped out important development gains in a matter of months.

For the first time in decades, extreme poverty is rising.

01 December 2020, UN Headquarters

Remarks at International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People 2020 Virtual Meeting

At the outset, allow me to reiterate my heartfelt condolences on the passing of our dear friend, Dr. Saeb Erekat.  Today is very much about recommitting to the peaceful vision that he worked so hard to realize, and that I myself testified for more than twenty years. 

Regrettably, there is a long way to go.  

I address you today with a deep sense of worry about the grim realities in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and the diminishing prospects of resolving the conflict, which has been with the United Nations since its very creation.

30 November 2020, UN Headquarters

Opening remarks at Thirteenth Session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

I am pleased to join you for the 13th session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Later this week, we will also observe the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

I take this issue of disability inclusion extremely seriously.

Securing the rights of persons with disabilities is necessary for upholding the values and principles of the United Nations Charter. 

That is why, last year, I launched a UN system-wide Disability Inclusion Strategy.

25 November 2020, UN Headquarters

Remarks on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

Excellencies, dear friends,

I am pleased to join you on this important day for the United Nations and for the world.

Violence against women and girls is a pervasive global human rights challenge, rooted in unequal gender power relations, structural inequality and discrimination.

That is why we launched the global UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign.

The COVID-19 crisis has further exposed violence against women and girls as a global emergency requiring urgent action.

19 November 2020, UN Headquarters

remarks on Racism in the Workplace

Dear Colleagues,

Welcome to this very important discussion on racism in the workplace.

I want to thank Dr. Kanem and our distinguished panel members who bring impressive expertise to this difficult issue.

Racism is a persistent scourge of our world.

People’s opportunities for education and employment, and their access to healthcare and justice, are often determined by their race.

Much of today’s racism is deeply entrenched in centuries of colonialism and slavery.  I am Portuguese – I think I know this story very well. 

08 October 2020, UN Headquarters

Remarks at Roundtable Discussion on Women, Peace and Security in Peacekeeping Contexts

[Bilingual, as delivered]

Excellencies, colleagues and friends,

Today, I have the honor of meeting – albeit remotely – four formidable women leaders who strive for peace in their regions and countries.

Thank you for joining us as we mark both the 75th anniversary of the United Nations and 20 years since the adoption of Security Council Resolution 1325 that Melissa has referred. 

That resolution was a landmark -- a ground-breaking step spearheaded by the women’s movement and women leaders. 

08 October 2020, UN Headquarters

Launch of "Call to Action" following Roundtable Discussion on Women, Peace and Security in Peacekeeping Contexts

Indeed I wanted to launch a call to action, and to call on Governments, on the United Nations system - because it starts by us all and the way we behave - on Regional Organizations, African Union, European Union, many others, Civil Society Organizations, academia, and the wider international community to take bold actions to translate commitments into reality. 

To prioritize women’s leadership.

To invest in community-based women’s networks as equal partners. 

To embrace evidence-based decision-making through a gender data revolution. 

05 October 2020, UN Headquarters

Remarks at High-Level Event on Libya

Ladies and Gentlemen,
Thank you for participating in this meeting.
I would like to thank Germany for co-chairing this meeting with the United Nations and for its leadership demonstrated through the Berlin process.
Resolving the crisis in Libya remains a top priority for the United Nations.
The conflict has been going on for far too long and today we have an opportunity to recommit to its ending.

01 October 2020, UN Headquarters

Remarks to the High-Level Meeting on the 25th Anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women

Monsieur le Président,
Mesdames et Messieurs les Ministres,
Chers collègues,

À vous tous, bonjour et bonsoir.

C'est un plaisir de m'adresser à vous à l'occasion du 25ème anniversaire de la quatrième Conférence mondiale sur les femmes.

La Conférence de Beijing a été un moment charnière ; un point de repère ; un tournant.

Pour beaucoup d'entre nous, ce fut un temps de réflexion profonde.