Mr. President of the General Assembly,
Excellencies, distinguished guests,
Messengers of Peace, dear students, ladies and gentlemen.
Thank you for joining us to sound the call for peace.
As we meet today, peace is under assault.
Across regions, countries and communities.
The poison of war is infecting our world.
Jeopardizing the lives of millions.
Turning people against each other.
Pitting nation against nation.
Eroding security and wellbeing.
And it is also pushing our shared goals for the future farther and farther away.
Instead of fighting each other on the battlefield, humanity should be rallying together to tackle the common challenges we face.
Like poverty, hunger and inequality.
Climate change and biodiversity loss.
The COVID-19 pandemic, which continues to devastate lives and economies alike.
And racism – the focus of this year’s International Day of Peace.
Advancing the cause of peace is the primary mission of the United Nations.
But the task of building peace belongs to every person.
Together, let’s wage peace.
Peace for our planet.
Peace for developing countries being victimized by a deeply unfair global financial system.
Peace in the name of equality for all – by ending all forms of discrimination, racism and hate speech.
Peace for the young people who have joined us here today, who will inherit the consequences of the decisions we make – or we fail to make.
And most importantly, peace for those millions of people today living through the horrors of war.
Now more than ever, we need global solidarity, collective action, commitment and mutual trust.
It starts here – and it starts now.
Let us sound the call for a world of peace for all people.
Before I ring this peace bell, please join me in a brief moment of silence to reflect on the meaning and necessity of peace.