António Guterres. Photo Credit: Google
The United Nations has described 2023 as a year of enormous suffering and violence across the world.
In a solemn video message released on New Year’s Eve, the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, called for concerted efforts to end wars and start the process of rebuilding in 2024.
The PUNCH reports that Israel and Palestine are currently at war following the invasion of Israel by Hamas on October 7. At least 21,320 people have been killed.
The Rusian-Ukranian war, which broke out in February 2022, is still ongoing and raging. In April this year, Sudan, in North Africa, plunged into another war. There was a coup and military takeover in the Niger Republic in July, resulting in suffering following sanctions imposed on the country by the Economic Community of West African States.
Addressing the world on Sunday, the UN Secretary-General said, “2023 has been a year of enormous suffering, violence, and climate chaos.
“Humanity is in pain. Our planet is in peril. 2023 is the hottest year on record. People are getting crushed by growing poverty and hunger; wars are growing in number and ferocity; and trust is in short supply. But pointing fingers and pointing guns lead nowhere.”
He called for unity and urgent concerted efforts to overcome the challenges that lie ahead.
“Humanity is strongest when we stand together. 2024 must be a year for rebuilding trust and restoring hope.
“We must come together across divides for shared solutions, for climate action.
For economic opportunity and a fairer global financial system that delivers for all.
“Together, we must stand up against the discrimination and hatred that are poisoning relations between countries and communities. And we must make sure new technologies such, as artificial intelligence, are a force for good.
“The United Nations will keep rallying the world for peace, sustainable development and human rights. Let’s resolve to make 2024 a year of building trust and hope in all that we can accomplish together.”