Tue. Oct 20th, 2020
LIVE: UN 'only as strong as its members' Guterres tells UN75 event, looking to the future


In case you missed the speeches  delivered by the Secretary-General and the head of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) earlier this morning, here’s a brief summary.

Mr. Guterres told delegates that no other global organization gives hope to so many people for a better world”,  and reminding participants that the UN “is only as strong as its members’ commitment to its ideals and each other”.

He made a strong call on Member States to act together, saying  “it is now time to mobilize your resources, strengthen your efforts and show unprecedented political will and leadership, to ensure the future we want, and the United Nations we need”.

The top UN official maintained that multilateralism is a necessity in building back “better and greener” for a more equal, resilient, and sustainable world, stressed that the UN must be at the centre of these efforts, and that “an upgraded UN must respond to these challenges and changes to stay relevant and effective”.

The President of ECOSOC, Munir Akram, also spoke at the opening of the event and, in his opening remarks, urged ECOSOC to focus on three practical steps: mobilize financing to meet the current  “triple challenge” (recover from COVID-19, achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, and avoid the “looming climate catastrophe”); greatly expand investment in sustainable infrastructure; and apply new technologies, whilst bridging the digital divide between rich and poor.

Mr. Akram warned that the world is drifting towards an erosion of structures, including the United Nations, that have been built to preserve peace and promote prosperity, risking a “tragedy of epic proportions for all mankind”. He called on UN Member States to reverse this course.

Full speeches from the day will be available on the UN75 website.


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