United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon applauded on Monday Argentina's commitment and strong partnership with the UN and its cooperation with other countries. Ban Ki-moon arrived in Buenos Aires from Paraguay and previously from Brazil where he was part of the inauguration of the Rio Olympic Games.
“You are a standard bearer for United Nations values and principles,” said Mr. Ban in his remarks to the Argentine Council for International Relations, CARI. The UN chief also met with president Mauricio Macri and held talks with foreign minister Susana Malcorra.
“I count on Argentina’s support in the critical years ahead as we work together to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and provide peace and prosperity for all on a healthy planet,” he added.
Noting that Argentina has already made an “excellent start” in implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with the government’s commitment to ‘zero poverty,’ he said it is important that the necessary resources are allocated so the social programs that will contribute to reach these goals are continued.
He also highlighted that Argentina has shown strong commitment in implementing the Paris Agreement on climate change, adopted three months after the agreement on the 2030 Agenda, at the national level and that its aspiration to present more ambitious Intended National Contributions to the Paris Agreement is noteworthy.
Mr. Ban also commended the country’s thrust towards energy diversification and renewable resources as well as the recent establishment of a Climate Change Cabinet to coordinate comprehensive policy for carbon emission reduction and climate-related risk mitigation.
“We need such commitments to inspire a race to the top and limit global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees,” he underscored. “Tackling climate change is essential for sustainable development,” he added.
Likewise the UN chief also hailed the country for its efforts in addressing gender violence and in promoting gender equality.
Emphasizing that ending violence against women and girls is one of his top priorities, he encouraged Argentina to continue working to close the gaps between law and practice. “We cannot provide a better future for all if we neglect the rights and aspirations of half the world’s people,” he stressed.
The Secretary-General thanked the country for its commitment to UN peacekeeping missions, especially those in Cyprus and Haiti, and for playing a key role in making the region free of the terror of nuclear weapons as well as for supporting the historic Arms Trade Treaty.
In particular, he thanked the country for its contributions to the UN mission to Colombia, authorized recently by Security Council, to monitor the ceasefire agreement between the Government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army (FARC-EP).
He further said that Argentina served with distinction on the Security Council and the Human Rights Council and, as the third largest economy in Latin America and the Caribbean, plays an important role in regional organizations, such as South American Common Market (MERCOSUR), the Organization of American States, Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) and, more recently, as an observer in the Pacific Alliance.
Finally, “your historic transition into a solid democracy with justice, accountability and rule of law is an example of hope for the world,” expressed Mr. Ban. “Argentina sends a clear message that a society can only flourish by respecting human rights, cultural and religious diversity, democratic processes and justice,” he concluded.