Presidents, Prime-Ministers and Ministers of Foreign Affairs have gathered in New York for the General Assembly of the United Nations. Most people might know about this annual gathering of world leaders through press coverage, yet few people know about the actual work delivered by the delegations of the 193 member states. In the last year alone, decisions made at the General Assembly have facilitated the governmental transition in Yemen, launched new initiatives on (clean) energy and oceans, and has made steady progress towards the eradication of polio and guinea worm. Yet there are still many crises that need a solution such as the conflict in Syria, the food insecurity in many regions around the world and not least of all, climate change.
364 days a year, the world focuses on crises being faced by the UN. One day a year however, the international community celebrates the achievements of the United Nations since its establishment in 1945. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said about the work delivered by the staff of the United Nations: “UN staff, diplomats and doctors; peacekeepers and aid workers; engineers, economists, interpreters and so many others, they work in areas where human suffering is tragically deep and widespread but they all share the same aspiration: to serve humankind. They care about their neighbours near and far; people who want to build a global community of caring and conscience.”
People from all over the world are invited to celebrate UN Day on 24 October. This day is an opportunity for everyone to show their support for the UN. Only by doing so can we encourage our governments to work together for a strong, credible and effective United Nations. The United Nations Association of the UK (UNA-UK) has started a petition to urge the UK government to work towards a multilateral approach to foreign policy in our increasingly interconnected world. Moreover, the petition gives signatories the opportunity to voice their view on what are the most urgent issues to be dealt with by the United Nations.
For more information:
To follow the General Assembly live: http://webtv.un.org/
The Brussels based United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe - UNRIC provides information on UN activities to the countries of the region. It also provides liaison with institutions of the European Union in the field of information. Its outreach activities extend to all segments of society and joint campaigns, projects and events are organized with partners including the EU, governments, the media, NGOs, schools and local authorities.
United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe (UNRIC Brussels)
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