Peace and Security

18 August 2021, Security Council

Remarks at Security Council High-Level Open Debate on United Nations Peacekeeping Operations: Technology and Peacekeeping

I thank the Government of India for convening today’s Open Debate on Technology and Peacekeeping.

Over recent decades, conflicts have become more intractable and protracted.

Actors have multiplied and diversified.

Tools of warfare are increasingly sophisticated.

And the growing internationalization of civil wars has made their resolution even more complex.

18 August 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks at Solemn Ceremony ahead of the Security Council High-level Open Debate on United Nations Peacekeeping Operations: Technology and Peacekeeping 

Excellencies, 
 
I thank the Government of India for bringing us together at the Peacekeeping Memorial today to honour the service and sacrifice of our peacekeepers.  
 
More than one million men and women have served under the blue flag of the United Nations since 1948. 
 
More than 4,000 peacekeepers have lost their lives in the line of duty.  
 
Among them are 174 Indian peacekeepers, the highest number of all the troop-contributing countries.  
 
We are forever grateful for their service. 
 

13 August 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks to the press on Afghanistan

Secretary-General António Guterres removes his mask before briefing reporters on the situation in Afghanistan. UN Photo/Evan Schneider

I have just returned to New York and would like to speak to you about the grave situation in Afghanistan.
 
Even [for] a country that has tragically known generations of conflict, Afghanistan is in the throes of yet another chaotic and desperate chapter – an incredible tragedy for its long-suffering people.
 
Afghanistan is spinning out of control.
 
In the last month alone, more than 1,000 people have been killed or injured from indiscriminate attacks against civilians, notably in Helmand, Kandahar and Herat provinces. 
 

16 August 2021, Security Council

Remarks to the Security Council on Afghanistan 

The world is following events in Afghanistan with a heavy heart and deep disquiet about what lies ahead.

All of us have seen the images in real time.  Chaos.  Unrest.  Uncertainty.  And fear.

Much lies in the balance. The progress.  The hope.  The dreams of a generation of young Afghan women and girls, boys and men.    

At this grave hour, I urge all parties, especially the Taliban, to exercise utmost restraint to protect lives and to ensure that humanitarian needs can be met. 
 
Conflict has forced hundreds of thousands from their homes. 

28 June 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks at the Second High-Level Conference of Heads of Counter-Terrorism Agencies of Member States

I am pleased to welcome you to the Second High-level Conference of Heads of Counter-Terrorism Agencies of Member States.

The fight against terrorism has seen important advances. Attacks have been thwarted across the world, and hundreds of terrorists have been brought to justice.

Yet the threat has persisted and diversified.

And the fight against terrorism has itself caused damage.

Al-Qaida and ISIL have continued to exploit social grievances and gender stereotypes to inspire lone actors and co-opt other groups.

28 June 2021, Security Council

Remarks to the Security Council on Children and Armed Conflict

Madam President,    
Excellencies,

I thank the Government of Estonia for convening today’s Open Debate on Children and Armed Conflict.

Conflict devastates societies and hits children particularly hard.

The start of 2021 has been no exception and, although monitoring of violations against children committed during 2021 will not be reported until my report of next year, I call on all parties to conflict to prioritize the prevention of violations against children and to engage in dialogue, ceasefires and peace processes.

23 June 2021, Security Council

Remarks to the Security Council on the Humanitarian Situation in Syria

[Delivered by VTC]

Thank you, Mr. President.

I welcome this opportunity to brief the Security Council about the humanitarian situation in Syria.

My latest report is now before the Security Council.  The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs will brief you in detail.

I will focus my remarks on the decisions soon to be taken by the Security Council.

For many of Syria’s people, the situation today is worse than at any time since the conflict began.

13.4 million people need humanitarian assistance.

20 May 2021, UN Headquarters

Opening statement at press stakeout following the ceasefire announcement between Gaza and Israel

Secretary-General António Guterres addresses the media following the ceasefire announcement between Gaza and Israel.

I welcome the ceasefire between Gaza and Israel, after 11 days of deadly hostilities. I extend my deepest condolences to the victims of the violence and their loved ones.

I commend Egypt and Qatar for the efforts carried out, in close coordination with the UN, to help restore calm to Gaza and Israel. I call on all sides to observe the ceasefire.

20 May 2021, General Assembly

Remarks to the General Assembly Meeting on the Situation in the Middle East and Palestine

The past ten days have witnessed a dangerous and horrific surge in deadly violence in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, particularly Gaza, and in Israel. 

I am deeply shocked by the continued air and artillery bombardment by the Israeli Defence Forces in Gaza. As of 19 May, this had claimed the lives of at least 208 Palestinians, including 60 children, and injured thousands more.

19 May 2021, Security Council

Remarks to UN Security Council Open Debate on Peace and Security in Africa: "Addressing root causes of conflict while promoting post-pandemic recovery in Africa"

Thank you for the opportunity to brief the Council on the important subject of addressing the root causes of conflict while promoting post-pandemic recovery in Africa.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, I have warned of the risks it poses to people and societies around the world, especially in countries affected by conflict. The series of Policy Briefs I issued last year included one that focuses only on the impact of COVID-19 on Africa.
 
This was the backdrop to my appeal for a global ceasefire to enable us to focus on our common enemy: the virus.