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Home » Home, UN NEWS » World Has to be United in Crisis Which Needs More Social Equality and Solidarity

World Has to be United in Crisis Which Needs More Social Equality and Solidarity

Amina Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary General (UN photo by UN News)

Remi Erikson (photo dnwgl.it - for education only)

Amina Mohammed 21-September 2020- at the opening on 75th UN General Assembly virtual session (UN-Photo by Rick Bajornas)

2030 UN agenda (WebPublicaPress photo illustration archive - for education only)

Empty UN delegate lounge at the UN Headquarters in New York - summer 2020 (Photo by Erol Avdovic - WebPublicaPress)

Amina Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary General (UN photo by UN News)

Amina Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary General (UN photo by UN News)

By Erol Avdovic (WebPublicaPress – United Nations) – New York - The COVID-19 pandemic is testing us all, said UN Deputy Secretary General Amina Mohammed delivered in a sobering speech at  G20 Interfaith Forum. The conference brought together religious and faith-based leaders. addressing this issue, mid ongoing global pandemic – health, economic and social crisis.

And considering that the UN is among the first world institutions to understand that this virus is not only a health problem, but in many ways a social one – of course it was necessary to change the semantics. Also, the new narrative that explains, or at least suggests, what needs to change in our lives – not just in the coming months but perhaps many years later is needed. Most importantly, the role of the United Nations remains significant in combating false news and explaining reality. Measures must therefore be based on scientific knowledge.

There are no illusions that it will be difficult and that it should be approached with global understanding.And more social equality and solidarity.

“Our social fabric is being stretched as the threads begin to fray in every corner of the globe. Inequalities are growing.  Divisions are widening. Livelihoods are being lost in the millions. Climate change is not on pause.,”  she said in a timely discussion on sustainability of the UN and world’s effort to coup with the spectrum of problems – originated from the COVID-19 pandemic.

A more resilient World

Ms. Mohammed encouraged all the participants to utilize this Forum to leverage their strength in diversity. “You have joined together from many faiths to reaffirm our shared faith in humanity.In shaping hearts and minds, you are also shaping the better world we need,” she said: “A world that is more inclusive, resilient and sustainable for all.”

2030 UN agenda (WebPublicaPress photo illustration archive - for education only)

2030 UN agenda (WebPublicaPress photo illustration archive – for education only)

While witnessing, as she said – ever-rising assaults on cultural diversity, religious pluralism and human rights around the world, including the resurgence of anti-Semitism, anti-Muslim bigotry, hate speech, racism, xenophobia, and other forms of discrimination –  ”the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development charts a way for a response and recovery that can overcome these challenges.

Mohammad said the Agenda 2030 is “a blueprint for people and planet”, since it provides “a framing for a health response and tackles the socio-economic impact.”

There are no doubts any more that the COVID-19 pandemic has already become the worst human and economic crisis of our lifetime, spreading to all countries. And, sparing no the rich or the poor, big and small, strong and weak.

That is why a universal global response is necessary, regardless of all local nuances. The UN should naturally be a leader in the correct coordination of that response. And almost no mistakes in that global response is allowed since there are many old and unresolved problems the world is facing, and the UN has been warning about for a long time.

Empty UN delegate lounge at the UN Headquarters in New York - summer 2020 (Photo by Erol Avdovic - WebPublicaPress)

Empty UN delegate lounge at the UN Headquarters in New York – summer 2020 (Photo by Erol Avdovic – WebPublicaPress)

According to the Sustainable Development Goals Report 2020, realized by UN “the world had been making progress—although uneven and insufficient to meet the Goals — in areas such as improving maternal and child health, expanding access to electricity and increasing women’s representation in government. Yet even these advances were offset elsewhere by growing food insecurity, deterioration of the natural environment, and persistent and pervasive inequalities.”

Much has now been further called into question precisely because of the pandemic.

Is 2030 Agenda enough

And Deputy Secretary General Mohammed said the United Nations came to that realization – while putting forward 2030 Agenda and ensuring a global response to COVID-19 takes commitment and courage, suggesting – it is not enough for the post pandemic world.

Obviously, it takes more than plans or bureaucratic lists of the ideal set of circumstances. The world is not yet perfect, however, in order to fully respond to the wise and moral calls of smart people, of whom there are many in the UN  - we need to listen first to those smart voices. In particular, businesses find it difficult to fit into such a vision of a united world based on moral and thus – in fact pragmatic principles.

Remi Erikson (photo dnwgl.it - for education only)

Remi Erikson (photo dnwgl.it – for education only)

The recent UN study shows business and some other sectors lag behind proclaimed (UN) goals or announcements that they will adequately fit into the development agenda.  “The scale and pace of change, to date, to deliver SDGs has not been big enough or fast enough”, said Remi Erikson, who led the team that drafted the report, Uniting Business in the Decade of Action, which shows that just 39 per cent of companies surveyed believe they have targets that are sufficiently ambitious to meet the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, as reported by UN News in July 2020.

Mr. Erikson, who is the CEO of risk management company, and Global Compact participant, went to say “only 46% of businesses surveyed are embedding the SDGs in their core business,”  adding “less than a third of businesses believe their industry is moving fast enough to deliver the SDGs by 2030.”

“Incremental change by individual companies will not deliver the business contribution needed to reach the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)”, said Mr. Erikson. “Companies and the systems they are part of are moving broadly in the same direction, but not in a concerted effort. Achieving the needed change requires a ramping up of ambition among all companies, whether they operate within the energy, healthcare, food, finance, transport or other systems,” according to the UN News.

Unity in diversity is the key 

Recognizing the challenges Ms. Mohammed said  ”it takes understanding that in order to solve big challenges, we need to come together.  There is strength in diversity and we need solidarity now. ”

“All of you represent that understanding — and the values that are so deeply rooted in all faith,”

Amina Mohammed 21-September 2020- at the opening on 75th UN General Assembly virtual session (UN-Photo by Rick Bajornas)

Amina Mohammed 21-September 2020- at the opening on 75th UN General Assembly virtual session (UN-Photo by Rick Bajornas)

UN Deputy Secretary said. And she pointed out to values such are:  inclusion and social justice are crucial in adopting the goal that no-one should be left behind.

“From my own faith of Islam, I draw strength from a Hadith by the Prophet Mohammad (Peace be upon him) that speaks to our times, ” Mohammad said, mentioning the Hadith that includes a reflection of seeing believers “showing love among themselves and being kind, resembling one body, so that, if any part of the body is not well then the whole body shares the sleeplessness and fever with it.”

And she said the COVID-19 pandemic “has demonstrated our inter-connections and also ourfragilities.”

But, as Deputy Secretary General Mohammed pointed “our world is like one body.  As long as one part is affected by this virus, we all are affected.”

Some lessons and experience 

Among the organizers of the forum were G20 Interfaith Forum Association, the National Committee for Interfaith and Intercultural Dialogue of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the International Dialogue Center, and the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations.

Addressing the esteemed gathering, Mohammed thanked religious leaders for wholeheartedly supporting UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres ’initiative for a comprehensive ceasefire in all of the world’s war hotspots.

While UN Deputy Secretary General Mohammed didn’t talk about that explicitly – some of us are reminiscent of some UN successes and failures. In addition to timely appeals, the world does not seem to listen to the appeals of the UN’s first man, even in these heavy pandemic times. Not to mention the disrespect of the lessons learned from the past and some bad experience in which the UN did not cope well.

Unfortunately, different interests and political aspirations, including those for domination, continue to unscrupulously break this single body, observers say. One thing are precise words and the other are uncompleted deeds. One would agree though that in any case, such UN initiatives are welcomed.

Full global solidarity needed 

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres - performing business under mask UNGA 21 September 2020 (UN TV image bu Erol Avdovic - for education only)

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres – performing business under mask UNGA 21 September 2020 (UN TV image bu Erol Avdovic – for education only)

Of course, from the very first days of spring in March, when pandemic started the UN Secretary General was personally involved in making a logistical plans – and how to implement them in the best possible way – scientifically. And, since the UN is a organization spread across all medians it will be not a easy task.

There are political, economic and other realities that can slow or even hider that. As it turned out, COVID-19 is a long-lasting pandemic with unpredictable health and socio-economic consequences. It will need full global solidarity and re-examining the problem of inequality.

According to all UN media sources the UN Secretary General’s Antonio Guterres UN Comprehensive Response to COVID-19 was designed to “save lives, protect societies, recover better.” A significant update to the plan’s first edition of the report (here) was released on 25 June 2020.

 

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