U.N. Secretariat

22 October 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks at the Meeting of the Peacebuilding Commission: “Our Common Agenda and the New Agenda for Peace”

You all have heard my warnings; and many of you share my sense of urgency.

The climate crisis is looming, the pandemic is upending our world, and conflicts continue to rage and worsen. 

The world is experiencing its biggest shared test since the Second World War, and I believe we are at a turning point.

The choices we make — or fail to make today - could result, as I have been saying, in further breakdown and a future of perpetual crises, or a breakthrough to a better, more sustainable, peaceful future for people and for the planet.

21 October 2021, Security Council

Remarks at the Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security

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

Madam President, excellencies, ladies and gentlemen. 

Madam President, we just came from the exhibition you mentioned and, indeed, we were seeing true women heroes and I think their struggle, their commitment, their courage, is an inspiration for us all and I would say that nothing could start better our debate than the testimony of this group of women heroes.

14 October 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks to the Second Global Sustainable Transport Conference 

Welcome to the Second United Nations Global Sustainable Transport Conference.

I express my profound gratitude to President Xi and the Government of the People’s Republic of China for their generosity in hosting this Conference.

We are meeting in Beijing – and globally - five years after the first Global Sustainable Transport Conference was held in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.

Since that time, and especially over the last eighteen months, the critical role of transport in growth, sustainable development and securing the health of our planet has only become clearer.

12 October 2021, Security Council

Remarks to the Security Council Ministerial Open Debate: "Peacebuilding and Sustainable Peace: Diversity, Statebuilding and the Search for Peace"

[Bilingual, as delivered]

My thanks to the government of Kenya for convening today’s debate on the important issue of diversity, statebuilding and peace.  

Your theme captures a crucial but often overlooked idea.  

That peace is not found in a piece of paper.

It is found in people.

More specifically, a diversity of people from different backgrounds coming together to chart a common course for a country.

Parties to conflict can agree to end hostilities.

11 October 2021, UN Headquarters

Opening remarks to the press on Afghanistan

Thank you very much for your presence.

Exactly four weeks after the humanitarian conference in Geneva, the humanitarian crisis is growing in Afghanistan — and so is the United Nations response to deliver for the Afghan people. 

The crisis is affecting at least 18 million people — half of the country’s population. 

Despite financial shortfalls, logistical challenges, and an increasingly complex geo-political situation, we are undertaking a massive humanitarian operation in the country.

06 October 2021, Security Council

Remarks to the Security Council on Ethiopia

Mr. President, excellencies, 

I welcome this opportunity to brief you concerning the situation in Ethiopia.

In August, I warned the Council that a humanitarian catastrophe was unfolding before our eyes in Ethiopia. Since then, the crisis has worsened. 

Up to 7 million people in Tigray, Amhara and Afar are now in need of food assistance and other emergency support. This includes more than 5 million people in Tigray where an estimated 400,000 are living in famine-like conditions.

07 October 2021, UN Headquarters

Opening remarks at virtual joint press conference to launch the World Health Organization’s Global Vaccination Strategy, with Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

Thank you very much, dear Tedros.

Ladies and gentlemen of the press,

Vaccine inequality is the best ally of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

It is allowing variants to develop and run wild, condemning the world to millions more deaths, and prolonging an economic slowdown that could cost trillions of dollars.

I have long been pushing for a global vaccination plan to reach everyone, everywhere, sooner rather than later. 

08 October 2021, UN Headquarters

Statement on 2021 Nobel Peace Prize

I congratulate Maria Ressa and Dmitry Muratov on being awarded the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.  Throughout the world, a free press is essential for peace, justice, sustainable development and human rights — and the cornerstone for building fair and impartial institutions.  No society can be free and fair without journalists who are able to investigate wrongdoing, bring information to citizens, hold leaders accountable and speak truth to power.  

Yet anti-media rhetoric — and attacks against media workers — continue to rise.  

30 September 2021, UN Headquarters

Remarks at the High-Level Side Event on Sudan 

Welcome to this virtual High-Level Side Event on Sudan. I thank Foreign Minister Eriksen Søreide for co-hosting this meeting.

Two years ago, we gathered here to celebrate the adoption of Sudan’s historic Constitutional Document and to express our solidarity and support to the new transitional Government, led by Prime Minister Hamdok.

30 September 2021, UN Headquarters

Secretary-General's remarks to Pre-COP26

Excellencies,
Distinguished delegates,

There is just one month to go before COP26 -- the most important climate conference since Paris.

It is essential for all humanity that we fulfil the promise of the Paris Agreement.

That means reducing emissions to limit temperature rise to 1.5 degrees from pre-industrial levels.

It means providing $100 billion dollars each year to the developing world for climate action.

And it means balancing financial support for mitigation and adaptation.

We are not there yet.