Reflect upon Lives Changed Forever by Terrorism, Urges Secretary-General in Message on Second International Day of Remembrance, Tribute to Victims
Following is UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message on the second International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism, observed on 21 August:
Terrorism in all its forms and manifestations remains a global challenge. It causes lasting damage to individuals, families and communities. These scars run deep, and while they may fade with time, they never disappear.
This International Day reminds us that no matter how long ago an attack happened, victims continue to struggle with its legacy. Victims and survivors all over the world need a chance to heal through justice and support. Thousands show great resilience, courage and spirit. They have forged global alliances, addressed and countered the false narratives spread by terrorists, and raised their voices against the threat of terrorism and the absence of justice.
We need to provide long-term, multi-faceted support to victims and survivors of terrorism, including through partnerships with governments and civil society, so that they can heal, recover, rebuild their lives and help others. Supporting victims of terrorism is one way in which we live up to our responsibility to defend their rights and our common humanity. By listening to them, we can also learn much about how best to unite our communities against terrorism.
The United Nations has helped to connect and raise the voices of victims of terrorism through the activities of the Office of Counter Terrorism. The General Assembly’s recent adoption of a resolution on victims, and the establishment of a Group of Friends of Victims of Terrorism are further steps to ensure that our support is enhanced and increased, addressing all aspects of victims’ needs. The organization of the first-ever United Nations Global Congress of Victims of Terrorism next year will further strengthen our collective work.
On our second observance of the International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to Victims of Terrorism, I ask that we all reflect on the lives that have been changed forever as a result of terrorism. Let us commit to showing victims that they are not alone, and that the international community stands in solidarity with them, wherever they may be. In their call for healing and justice, they speak for all of us.