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Speeches

  • The Secretary-General's message on Nelson Mandela International Day Jul 18, 2017

    Nelson Mandela continues to inspire the world through his example of courage and compassion, and his commitment to social justice and a culture of freedom and peace. I had the honour of meeting Nelson Mandela several times, including during South Africa’s transition. Each time, I was struck by his wisdom, his compassion, and above all, his humility.

  • UN Secretary-General's Message on World Refugee Day Jun 22, 2017

    World Refugee Day is an expression of solidarity with people who have been uprooted from their homes by war or persecution. The latest figures from the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, show that at least 65.6 million people -- 1 of every 113 members of the human family -- have been forcibly displaced within their own countries or across borders.

  • UN Secretary-General's Message for the 100-day countdown to the International Day of Peace Jun 13, 2017

    The International Day of Peace, observed every year on 21 September, embodies our shared aspiration to end the needless suffering caused by armed conflict. It offers a moment for the peoples of the world to acknowledge the ties that bind them together, irrespective of their countries of origin. It is a day on which the United Nations calls for a 24-hour global ceasefire, with the hope that one day of peace can lead to another, and another, and ultimately to a stilling of the guns.

  • World Oceans Day “Our Oceans, Our Future” Jun 8, 2017

    The oceans make our home a blue planet. The oceans regulate climate, generate oxygen, and provide ecosystem services, energy and minerals. The life teeming below their surfaces and along the shorelines is a source of food and medicines. Oceans connect all of us, linking people and nations in cultural ties, and they are essential for sharing goods and services across the world. The importance of our oceans to every single living being on our planet cannot be overstated. Today, we celebrate all that the oceans give us, and reaffirm our commitment to being good stewards.

  • UN Secretary-General's Message on International Women's Day Mar 8, 2017

    Women’s rights are human rights. But in these troubled times, as our world becomes more unpredictable and chaotic, the rights of women and girls are being reduced, restricted and reversed. Empowering women and girls is the only way to protect their rights and make sure they can realize their full potential.

  • The Secretary-General’s Message on International Day of Women and Girls in Science Feb 11, 2017

    As a trained engineer and former teacher, I know that these stereotypes are flat wrong. They deny women and girls the chance to realize their potential – and deprive the world of the ingenuity and innovation of half the population.

  • The Secretary General's Message on International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation Feb 6, 2017

    The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development promises an end to this practice by 2030.

  • Statement by the UN Secretary-General on Refugees Feb 1, 2017

    Countries have the right, even the obligation, to responsibly manage their borders to avoid infiltration by members of terrorist organizations.

  • UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres appeals for peace Jan 3, 2017

    On my first day as Secretary-General of the United Nations, one question weighs heavily on my heart. How can we help the millions of people caught up in conflict, suffering massively in wars with no end in sight?

  • Antonio Guterres pays Tribute to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and takes oath of office Dec 12, 2016

    It is time to reconstruct relations between people and leaders – national and international. Time for leaders to listen and show that they care, about their own people and about the global stability and solidarity on which we all depend. And it is time for the United Nations to do the same: to recognize its shortcomings, and to reform the way it works. This Organization is the cornerstone of multilateralism, and has contributed to decades of relative peace. But the challenges are now surpassing our ability to respond. The UN must be ready to change.