HomeWorldUN chief warns global leaders: The world is in 'big crisis'

UN chief warns global leaders: The world is in ‘big crisis’

With the UN chief warning that the world is in a “great crisis”, leaders meeting in person for the first time in three years must tackle conflicts and climate catastrophe, rising poverty and inequality – and reduce divisions between major powers. should be addressed. Worse since the Russian invasion Ukraine,

In speeches and remarks before the leaders’ meeting on Tuesday, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres cited the “huge” task of not only saving the planet, “which is literally on fire,” but to deal with the continuing COVID-19 Epidemic. He pointed to “developing countries lacking access to finance to recover – a crisis not seen in a generation”, which has lost ground to education, health and women’s rights.

Guterres will deliver his “state of the world” speech on Tuesday at the opening of the annual high-level global gathering. UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said it would be “a sober, genuine and solution-focused report card” for a world “where geopolitical divides are putting us all at risk.” “There will be no sugar in his remarks, but he will outline reasons for hope,” Dujarric told reporters on Monday.

The meeting of the 77th General Assembly of World Leaders was convened in the shadow of Europe’s first major war since World War II – the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, which sparked a global food crisis and opened a rift between the major powers that Haven’t seen since winter. war.

Yet about 150 heads of state and government are on the list of the latest speakers. It is a sign that despite the fragmented state of the planet, the United Nations remains an important gathering place for presidents, prime ministers, monarchs and ministers to meet in private not only to give their views but also to discuss challenges on the global agenda. Has happened – and hopefully makes some progress.

Top of that agenda for many: Russia’s February 24 invasion of Ukraine, which threatened not only the sovereignty of its smaller neighbour, but Europe’s largest nuclear war in the now-Russian-occupied southeast of the country. There is a fear of nuclear devastation at the plant.

Leaders of many countries are trying to prevent widespread war and restore peace in Europe. However, diplomats do not expect any success this week.

The loss of significant grain and fertilizer exports from Ukraine and Russia has led to a food crisis, especially in developing countries, and inflation and the rising cost of living among many others. These issues are at the top of the agenda.

At a meeting on Monday to promote the United Nations’ goals for 2030 – which include ending extreme poverty, ensuring quality education for all children and achieving gender equality – Guterres said many of the world’s pressures to make it ” Our long-term development priorities make it tempting to put aside.” But the UN chief said some things can’t wait – among them education, respectable jobs, full equality for women and girls, comprehensive health care and the climate crisis. Involves action to deal with. He called for public and private finance and investment, and above all, peace.

The death of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II and her funeral in London on Monday, attended by many world leaders, has caused a last-minute headache for the high-level meeting. Diplomats and UN staff have scrambled to deal with changes in travel plans, timing of events and logistically complicated speaking schedules for world leaders.

The global gathering, known as the general debate, was completely virtual in 2020 due to the pandemic and a hybrid in 2021. This year, the 193-member General Assembly returns to personal speeches only, with one exception – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Over objections from Russia and some allies, the assembly voted last Friday to allow the Ukrainian leader to pre-record his speech for reasons beyond his control – “ongoing foreign aggression” and military hostilities for which he has to It needs to do its “national defense and”. security duties. By tradition, Brazil has spoken for seven decades before, because in the initial General Assembly sessions, it began voluntarily when no other country did.

The US President is traditionally the second speaker representing the host country for the United Nations. But Joe Biden is attending the Queen’s funeral, and his speech has been pushed to Wednesday morning. Senegalese President Mackie Sall is expected to replace Biden.

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