Global challenges require collective responses: Senior UN diplomat

By Zhu Bochen
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, September 3, 2020
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UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres addresses the opening of the General Debate of the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly at the UN Headquarters in New York, Sept. 25, 2018. [Photo/Xinhua]

Senior United Nations (UN) diplomat David A. Chikvaidze urges UN member states to join forces and collectively address global challenges under the emerging social and economic paradigm.

"At this watershed moment for humankind that is 2020, we need to develop a more modern multilateralism, one that is more inclusive and collaborative," said Chikvaidze, chef de cabinet to the director-general of the UN Office at Geneva, during an online conference commemorating the 75th anniversary of the UN.

Whilst recognizing the achievements being made since the end of the second world war, Chikvaidze also reviewed the "complex interlocking challenges" that have faced humanity over the past two decades, such as climate change, the refugee crisis, inequality, trade dispute, and "growth in nationalistic and isolationist politics of fear and resentment," to name a few.

"What we are living today is not a routine change of environment, rather a pivotal moment which only occurs maybe every other century," Chikvaidze warned, adding that the world today is lacking strategic stability.

In view of the global response to the social and economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, Chikvaidze pointed out that existing multilateralism is yet to be improved. "Leadership in the 21st century must come from all quarters on all levels," he urged.

Regarding the emerging problems facing the UN today, Chikvaidze suggested that member states should take action and play their part in the UN system.

"However, they are not stepping up to fine-tune and strengthen their organization, resorting instead to starving it of funds, and demanding that the bureaucracy reform itself," he said.

Similar appeals have also been put forward by other UN diplomats in recent years. During the opening of the General Debate of the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly in September 2018, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres underscored that "multilateralism is under fire precisely when we need it most." He called for member states to act according to the UN Charter and rebuild trust.

"We need to pull back from the precipice in time, [and] modern multilateralism is the only way to do this," Chikvaidze urged, encouraging UN member states to collaborate under the 2030 sustainable development agenda.

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