Hope for a peaceful world in 2017
Tuesday, January 03, 2017 - 16:40:15
(VOVworld) – In an address marking the New Year and his first day in office as UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres said that in 2017 the top priority must be ensuring peace in the world.
|New UN chief Antonio Guterres
Tumultuous 2016 brought severe challenges like Brexit, a controversial US presidential election, and an overwhelming migrant crisis in Europe. Frustration skyrocketed as a result of widening inequality and unemployment caused by globalization and technological advances. In their New Year addresses, world leaders pinned their hopes on the year 2017.
Solidarity and peace
On the first day of 2017, UN chief Antonio Guterres said: “Let us resolve to put peace first. Let us make 2017 a year in which we all – citizens, governments, leaders – strive to overcome our differences. From solidarity and compassion in our daily lives, to dialogue and respect across political divides. From ceasefires on the battlefield, to compromise at the negotiating table to reach political solutions. Peace must be our goal and our guide.”
In his New Year address, Chinese President Xi Jinping said he hopes the international community will promptly overcome difficulties. He said as “mankind shares the same fate”, the planet should be built into a more peaceful and prosperous place to live in.” German Chancellor Angela Merkel painfully recalled the terrorist attack in Berlin on December 19 and other attacks carried out by immigrants. But she said Germany will fight the “hatred” of terrorism with “humanity” and “unity” and is “doing everything it can to ensure its citizens’ security in freedom.”
Myanmar State Counsellor and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi pledged to establish a lasting peace throughout the nation in 2017 with the citizens’ efforts and international friends’ support. South Korea’s leader promised to expand cooperation with the US, Japan, China, and Russia for regional peace.
2017 brings hopes
Optimistic observers predicted that in 2017 the world will see more cooperation between countries for peace and development. The signing of the Paris agreement on climate change by 175 UN members and ratification of the deal by the US, China, and the EU gives momentum to environmental protection efforts.
The world community has confidence that the new UN chief, an experienced diplomat who has led a refugee rescue agency, can mediate global hot button issues.
Late in 2016, there were signals that US-Russia ties will thaw under the Donald Trump administration, and so will the China-Philippines relations despite their East Sea dispute.
Let us hope for a better 2017, in which the sound of guns and bombs will no longer be heard and civilian blood and tears will stop being shed.