‘Together, we can move from aspiration to action,’ Ban tells global, regional leaders in Qatar

With the Doha Forum meeting “at a time of fragility and vulnerability,” United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today that while progress on the UN’s 2030 Agenda is crucial to usher in sustainability and equity, more must be done now to end conflict and suffering.

“Our world faces multiple armed conflicts, rising extremism and the widening impacts of climate change. One hundred and thirty million people need life-saving humanitarian assistance. War and persecution have forced 60 million people from their homes,” Mr. Ban told world and regional leaders gathered in Qatar for the opening of the annual Forum.

Indeed, he continued, in the Middle East and Gulf region, millions of people are suffering the consequences of conflict, terrorism, inequality, regional rivalries and severe deficits in basic freedoms. “The scale of these challenges demands a more concerted global response,” he said.

Stressing that encouragement could be drawn from recent landmark agreements, including the Paris Agreement on climate change, and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which he called an “integrated and inspiring blueprint for peace and prosperity on a healthy planet,” that takes aim at many of the drivers of instability and anger around the world.

“It calls on us to fight corruption and joblessness, and to ensure that natural resources are managed for the many, not the few. It highlights the importance of building accountable institutions capable of providing services and justice for all,” said the UN chief, adding that at its core, the Agenda’s commitment is to leave no one behind.

“[Yet] as we set our sights on the year 2030, we must do far more to end conflict and suffering in 2016. We are striving to build a culture of prevention by stressing the peaceful resolution of disputes, and by focusing early on violations of human rights before they escalate,” the Secretary-General underscored.

On one of the major prevention challenges of our times — violent extremism — he said the international community must avoid “short-sighted policies and heavy-handed approaches” that only exacerbate the problem and give terrorists their best recruitment tools.

Source: National News Agency

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