MESSAGE: António Guterres appeals for Peace

New UN Secretary-General António Guterres calls for peace in his first message.

New York, 1 January, 2017 - On this first day as Secretary-General of the United Nations, there is, above all, a question that assaults my conscience:

How can we help the millions of human beings who are victims of conflict and who suffer enormously in wars that seem to have no end?

Civil populations in various parts of the globe are shattered under the most lethal violence. Women, children and men are killed or injured, forced to abandon their homes, losing everything. Even humanitarian hospitals and trains are hit without consideration.

In these wars there are no victors; Everybody loses. Billions of dollars are spent on the destruction of societies and economies, fueling cycles of mistrust and fear that can perpetuate themselves for generations. Vast regions of the planet are totally destabilized and a new phenomenon of global terrorism threatens everyone.

On this first day of the Year, I ask all of you to share a New Year purpose with me:

Let's make Peace our priority.

Let's make 2017 a year in which all - citizens, governments, leaders - try to overcome their differences.

Whether through solidarity and compassion in our daily lives, or through dialogue and respect, regardless of political differences. Whether through a cease-fire on a battlefield or through understandings at the negotiating table for political solutions.

The pursuit of the supreme good of Peace must be our goal and our guiding principle.

Dignity and hope, progress and prosperity - in short everything we value as a human family - depends on Peace.

But Peace depends on us.

I appeal to all to share with me this commitment to Peace today and every day.

Let's make 2017 a year of Peace.

Thank you.

Check out the biography of Secretary-General António Guterres here.

"We thank our UN Online Volunteer, Juliana Nogueira, for her contribution to the translation of this article".  Juliana is an online volunteer mobilised through". 

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