With barely less than a few hours to the winding up of 2017, the United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has issued what he termed “a red alert for the world” ahead of the year 2018.
The UN chief, in a New Year message, expressed regret that in 2017, the world went in reverse to the appeal for peace.
He said that when he assumed office one year ago, he had appealed for 2017 to be a year for peace.
The secretary-general said: “When I took office one year ago, I appealed for 2017 to be a year for peace. Unfortunately – in fundamental ways, the world has gone in reverse. On New Year’s Day 2018, I am not issuing an appeal. I am issuing an alert — a red alert for our world.”
“Conflicts have deepened and new dangers have emerged. Global anxieties about nuclear weapons are the highest since the Cold War. Climate change is moving faster than we are. Inequalities are growing. We see horrific violations of human rights. Nationalism and xenophobia are on the rise.”
As the world begins 2018, the UN chief called for global unity.
Mr. Guterres added that he truly believed we could make our world more safe and secure.
The only way to counter these challenges is to work together, he stressed. “As we begin 2018, I call for unity,” he said, adding “I truly believe we can make our world more safe and secure. We can settle conflicts, overcome hatred and defend shared values. But we can only do that.” together.
“I urge leaders everywhere to make this New Year’s resolution: Narrow the gaps. Bridge the divides. Rebuild trust by bringing people together around common goals. Unity is the path. Our future depends on it.”
Towards the end, the secretary-general added, “ I wish you peace and health in 2018. Thank you. Shokran. Xie Xie. Merci. Spasiba. Gracias. Obrigado.”