World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


UN Sec-Gen Calls for Unity on Climate Change in Kiribati

United Nations Secretary General Calls for Unity on Climate Change in Kiribati

Tarawa, 6 September 2011—Pacific Island countries have to rise above their differences, join forces and make common cause towards the urgent issue of climate change.

The Secretary-General calling on The President, Beretitenti Anote Tong, Tarawa, Kiribati. UNICEF Pacific/Naoki Takyo.

The Secretary-General at Eita Maneaba, Tarawa, Kiribati, UNICEF Pacific/Naoki Takyo.

“I know you are frustrated by the divisions, I am too,” the Secretary-General said at a state dinner on Sunday. “Instead of seeing divides, I look for commonalities. Instead of seeing separation, I look for unity.”

The Secretary-General spoke of his personal commitment to the issue of climate change that has sent him to areas around the world which were manifesting climate change-induced changes like the Antarctica and the Amazon River Basin.

“Kiribati will strengthen my belief, my conviction that this climate change is a much more serious security issue,” the Secretary-General said.

Mr. Ban said we needed to protect this world to avoid future generations labeling this generation “irresponsible.” The Secretary-General told those gathered at the Kiribati State House that he would continue to advocate for vulnerable populations like Kiribati.

“I will bring your concerns back to the world, to the United Nations General Assembly, to the climate change negotiations in Durban later this year and to the Rio20 Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012.”

“I will keep pressing for progress until we get real results.” Mr Ban had earlier been ‘blessed’ by village elders where he had returned the gesture in the local language by a greeting encompassing health (Te Mauri), peace ( Te Raoi) and prosperity (ao Te Tabomoa) to the delight of the islanders who had gathered at the Eita District maneaba, a local meeting house.

“This is a beautiful Kiribati greeting that also sums up the values of the United Nations,” he said. "I am here because Kiribati and the United Nations share important values and important goals. We share the goals of peace, health and prosperity.

“We are both concerned about climate change. I hope by coming here ... I can call attention to this urgent problem. Many countries are dealing with climate change but here climate change is threatening your territory, your culture, your very way of life.”

The Secretary-General who is accompanied by Mrs. Ban and his delegation left yesterday afternoon on his way to attend the annual Pacific Island Forum Leaders meeting in New Zealand.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


OECD: G20 GDP Returns To Pre-pandemic Level In The First Quarter Of 2021, But With Large Differences Across Countries

Gross domestic product (GDP) of the G20 area returned to pre-pandemic level in the first quarter of 2021, growing by 0.8% compared with the fourth quarter of 2020. However, this figure conceals large differences across countries... More>>

Myanmar: ‘Mass Deaths’ Alert As 100,000 Flee Junta’s Heavy Weapons

In Myanmar, international action is needed urgently to prevent “mass deaths” there, after civilians fled attacks by so-called “junta bombs”, a top independent UN rights expert has warned... More>>

UN: WHO Warns Of ‘Two-track Pandemic’ As Cases Decline But Vaccine Inequity Persists

Even though COVID-19 cases and deaths have declined in recent weeks, the world is facing a “two-track pandemic”, the UN’s top health official said on Monday in his ongoing campaign to get more vaccines to developing countries... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

G7: No Major G7 Stock Index Aligned With Paris Climate Goals

New research by CDP and the United Nations Global Compact on behalf of the Science Based Targets initiative calls on the largest G7 companies to take ambitious climate action... More>>

Report: Universal Access To Sustainable Energy Will Remain Elusive Without Addressing Inequalities

During the last decade, a greater share of the global population gained access to electricity than ever before, but the number of people without electricity in Sub-Saharan Africa actually increased... More>>

UN: Launches Decade On Ecosystem Restoration To Counter ‘Triple Environmental Emergency’

Heads of Government, religious leaders, activists and artists joined the United Nations on Friday in a rallying cry to heal the planet, launching the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration... More>>