UN Secretary-General’s Remarks on the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

20 March 2018

The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination commemorates the Sharpeville massacre — the horrific killing of 69 people peacefully demonstrating against apartheid in South Africa.

The apartheid regime was based on institutionalized racial discrimination.

It was ultimately – and thankfully – consigned to history on the release from prison and accession to the presidency of Nelson Mandela, whose centennial we mark this year.

The memory of Sharpeville lives on in this annual UN observance, when we reaffirm our unequivocal rejection of all forms of racism, xenophobia and intolerance.

Continue reading

UNIC Manila co-organizes peace concert to diffuse tensions in West Philippine Sea

The United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Manila is co-organizing a peace concert dubbed Not by Force but by Art on 20-23 April 2018 to encourage dialogue among claimant countries–China, Philippines, Vietnam, and Brunei, in the West Philippine Sea.

UNIC Manila announced this initiative at a press conference held on 5 March 2018 at the Manila Hotel, specifically at a weekly gathering of the press there called “Kapihan sa Manila Hotel” sponsored by Samahang Plaridel–an association of members of the local press.

UNIC Manila National Information Officer Teresa Debuque formed the panel of interviewees, along with representatives of the organizing committee, including Cecile Guidote-Alvarez, executive director, Earthsavers UNESCO DREAM Center/president, Philippine Center of the International Theatre Institute; and Harold Clavite, director-general, Philippine Information Agency.

Continue reading

New UN Publications: December 2017

World Economic Situation & Prospects 2018.
The world economy has strengthened as lingering fragilities related to the global financial crisis subside. In 2017, global economic growth reached 3 per cent—the highest growth rate since 2011—and growth is expected to remain steady for the coming year. The improved global economic situation provides an opportunity for countries to focus policy towards longer-term issues such as low carbon economic growth, reducing inequalities, economic diversification and eliminating deep-rooted barriers that hinder development.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNDESA
ISBN: 978-92-1-109177-9
pp.187

The State of the World’s Children 2017: Children in a digital world.
As the debate about whether the internet is safe for children rages, The State of the World’s Children 2017: Children in a Digital World discusses how digital access can be a game changer for children or yet another dividing line. The report represents the first comprehensive look from UNICEF at the different ways digital technology is affecting children, identifying dangers as well as opportunities. It makes a clear call to governments, the digital technology sector and telecom industries to level the digital playing field for children by creating policies, practices and products that can help children harness digital opportunities and protect them from harm.

Bibliographic info:
Publisher: UNICEF
ISBN: 978-92-806-4930-7
pp. 211

Continue reading

UN Secretary-General’s Message for World Radio Day, 13 February

Radio reaches the widest audience in the world.

In an era of dramatic advances in communications, radio retains its power to entertain, educate, inform and inspire.

It can unite and empower communities, and give voice to the marginalized.

This year, with the Winter Olympics now under way, we also recognize the many ways in which sports broadcasting brings people together around excitement and achievement.

On World Radio Day, let us celebrate both radio and sports as ways of helping people achieve their full potential.

 

UN Secretary-General’s Message for International Day of Women and Girls in Science, 11 February

Both girls and boys have the potential to pursue their ambitions in science and mathematics, in school and at work.

But systemic discrimination means women occupy less than 30 percent of research and development jobs worldwide.

We need concerted, concrete efforts to overcome stereotypes and biases.

One starting point is banishing the predominantly male images of scientists and innovators on social media, in textbooks and in advertising.

We need to encourage and support girls and women achieve their full potential as scientific researchers and innovators.

Women and girls need this, and the world needs this, if we are to achieve our ambitions for sustainable development on a healthy planet.

Throughout history, from Hildegard of Bingen to Wangari Maathai, women scientists have built our world.

It’s time to support and invest in them.

 

UN recalls 1.5M children killed during Holocaust

(L-R: Mr. Lee Blumenthal, head of the Jewish community in the Philippines; Ms. Yulia Rachisnky-Spivakov, Deputy Head of Mission of the State of Israel in Manila; Director Arlene Gonzales-Macaisa, Department of Foreign Affairs-UNIO)

About 160 university students gathered at the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) on 26 January 2018 to take part in a commemorative event recalling the memory of the six million Jews who died in the Holocaust, or the systematic killing of Jews by Nazi Germany during World War II.

Organized by the United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Manila, the 2018 Holocaust remembrance event focused on the children of the Holocaust. It featured an exhibit opening, a student briefing and a film showing.

In a video message, shown during the event, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said, “Decades since the Second World War, we see the persistence of anti-Semitism and an increase in other forms of prejudice. And too often, vile views are moving from the margins to the mainstream of societies and politics. We must stand together against the normalization of hate.”

In the student briefing, Ms. Yulia Rachisnky-Spivakov, Deputy Chief of Mission of the State of Israel in Manila, said, “All of us today have a special obligation. An obligation to never lose sight of what went wrong and how it happened. And an obligation to be ever vigilant in the face of persistent anti-Semitism and other forms of hate in our time.”

Meanwhile, UNIC Manila National Information Officer Teresa Debuque enjoined the students to “remember never to forget what happened during the Holocaust” and to call out “Holocaust deniers who say that the Holocaust is a myth that was created by and perpetuated by the Jewish people.”

Earlier, the exhibit was opened by Ms. Rachisnky-Spivakov, Ms. Debuque, Ms. Arlene Gonzales-Macaisa, Director for Peace and Security of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), and Mr. Lee Blumenthal, head of the Jewish community in the Philippines.

The exhibit, called “The Butterfly Project,” highlighted the stories of five Jewish children who lived and died during the Holocaust, including Anne Frank. The exhibit gets its name from an initiative of the same name that was started in 1996 by the Holocaust Museum in Houston. Students around the world were invited to express their empathy and hope through the creation of a butterfly. The Butterfly Project aims to teach social responsibility, respect for diversity and the importance of human rights.

The exhibit opening was followed by the ceremonial lighting of six candles, in memory of the six million Jews who were murdered during World War II.

The International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust is observed by the UN on January 27 of every year. January 27 is also the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp.

The “Holocaust Remembrance” day was created by UN General Assembly resolution 60/7, which was adopted on 1 November 2005. The same resolution created the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme, which seeks to remind the world of the lessons to be learned from the Holocaust in order to help to prevent future acts of genocide.

You may view photos of the event at: http://bit.ly/2E66eeR