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U.N. Day Celebrated
Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon Celebrates U.N.’s 68th Birthday in NY’s Times Square
By Lee Kyutae
To celebrate the 68th birthday of the United Nations (UN), the eighth and current Secretary-General of the UN, Ban Ki-moon, walked through Times Square in New York to greet passersby and inform them of the day’s significance to the international body that he leads.
The 24th of October has been celebrated as UN Day since 1948. In 1971, the General Assembly recommended that the day be observed by Member States as a public holiday.
Secretary-General Ban personally reached out to New Yorkers and tourists on the street to remind them of UN Day, and those who recognized him ran over to shake his hand and take pictures. And when the UN Day message flashed on the NASDAQ screens in a timely manner, everyone cheered loudly. Secretary Ban said that this year again, the world witnessed the UN coming together on armed conflict, human rights, the environment and many other issues. “We continue to show what collective action can do and we can do even more. In a world that is more connected, we must be more united,” he stated.
He then went on to say that the fighting in Syria represents the biggest security challenge facing the UN today, while the most urgent development challenge is to make sustainability a reality. “The Millennium Development Goals have cut poverty in half,” he explained. “Now we must maintain the momentum, craft an equally inspiring post-2015 development agenda and reach an agreement on climate change.”