Dhaka, Jan 1 (UNB) - United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said the UN will continue to bring people together to build bridges and create space for solutions in 2019.
“We’ll keep up the pressure. And we’ll never give up,” he said on Tuesday as New Year begins urging all to confront threats, defend human dignity and build a better future – together.
In recent weeks, Guterres in a message said the United Nations also oversaw landmark global agreements on migration and refugees that will help save lives and overcome damaging myths.
“And everywhere, people are mobilising behind the Sustainable Development Goals – our global blueprint for peace, justice and prosperity on a healthy planet,” he said adding that when international cooperation works, the world wins.
Guterres said the United Nations was able to bring countries together in Katowice to approve the Work Programme for the implementation of the Paris Agreement on climate change.
“Now we need to increase ambition to beat this existential threat. It’s time to seize our last best chance. It’s time to stop uncontrolled and spiraling climate change,” he said.
The UN chief wished fellow citizens of the world a happy, peaceful and prosperous new year. “Last New Year, I issued a red alert, and the dangers I mentioned still persist. These are anxious times for many, and our world is undergoing a stress test.”
Guterres said climate change is running faster than they are and geopolitical divisions are deepening, making conflicts more difficult to resolve.
“And record numbers of people are moving in search of safety and protection. Inequality is growing. And people are questioning a world in which a handful of people hold the same wealth as half of humanity,” he said.
The UN chief said intolerance is on the rise and trust is on the decline. But, he said, there are also reasons for hope.
Guterres said the talks on Yemen have created a chance for peace and the agreement signed in Riyadh in September between Ethiopia and Eritrea has eased long-running tensions and brought improved prospects to an entire region.
And the agreement between the parties to the conflict in South Sudan, the UN chief said, has revitalized chances for peace, bringing more progress in the past four months than in the previous four years.
“I wish you and your families a peaceful and healthy New Year,” he said.