The war in Ukraine continues to have a devastating impact on the people of that country. Civilians are dying in the most tragic circumstances every day. Millions of lives have been destroyed or put on hold.
Now, since the Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine, the world’s attention has been focused on the war’s terrifying levels of death, destruction and suffering.
We begin this year with a heightened awareness of the importance of resilience. The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us that we cannot afford to ignore known risks.
As we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic response, I would like to assure you once again that the health and safety of personnel and delegates continues to be our number one priority.
The ideals of the United Nations – peace, justice, equality and dignity — are beacons to a better world.
But the Organization we celebrate today emerged only after immense suffering. It took two world wars, millions of deaths and the horrors of the Holocaust for world leaders to commit to international cooperation and the rule of law.
I want to once again express to all colleagues my enormous appreciation, my enormous gratitude, for your fantastic professionalism, your flexibility and the way you have been able to fully deliver for the people we care for during this period.
2020 marks the 75th anniversary of the United Nations. I draw tremendous strength from all that we represent and all that we have achieved together.
As we prepare to bid farewell to 2019, we must take a clearsighted look at the global situation and the new challenges we face.
Our world is undergoing a shift. It is no longer bipolar or unipolar. But it is not yet truly multipolar. Balances of power are changing, creating new and dangerous risks.
We are facing tense and turbulent times around the globe. Rising inequality is a danger everywhere. Trade and technology tensions are building. Growth forecasts are being revised down. Unease and uncertainty are going up. This is a global phenomenon. No region is immune.