<p>The UN Day concert, held at UN headquarters in New York, on 21 October 2021</p>

The UN Day concert, held at UN headquarters in New York, on 21 October 2021

United Nations Day 2021: What is it and what significance does it hold?

Anniversary of UN Charter is celebrated on 24 October each year

Kate Ng
Sunday 24 October 2021 16:51
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This year marks the 76th anniversary of the UN Charter coming into force on the annual United Nations Day.

This year, United Nations Day falls on Sunday 24 October. The celebration is usually held in the General Assembly Hall of the UN headquarters in New York, with a concert to mark the day.

On Thursday, the UN Day Concert was held under the theme “Building Back Together for Peace and Prosperity” for a small audience, according to social distancing rules.

The part-live, part pre-recorded concert was sponsored by the Permanent Mission of the Republic Korea, and featured violinists Angela and Jennifer Chun, as well as soprano Youngok Shin.

Performances by soprano Youngmi Kim, the Goyang Philharmonic Orchestra, pianist Yungwook Yoo and all-female K-pop band aespa.

Today, the Expo 2020 Dubai will celebrate UN Day with a variety of official events, including a ceremony at the Al Was Dome and a performance by the Emirates Youth Symphony Orchestra.

What is the history behind UN Day and why is it important?

When did United Nations Day start?

The annual commemorative day was first declared by the UN General Assembly in 1947, two years after the official creation of the United Nations.

The day, designated as the anniversary of the Charter of the United Nations, was announced to “be devoted to making known to the people of the world the aims and achievements of the United Nations and to gaining their support for” its work.

In 1945, the representatives of 50 countries met in San Francisco at the UN Conference on International Organisation to draw up the Charter.

When the Charter was ratified by a majority of signatories, the UN officially came into being.

Why is United Nations Day celebrated?

According to the UN, the day is a “powerful advocacy tool” and an occasion to “educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilise political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity”.

What is the message of this year’s United Nations Day?

This year, the UN said its concert represents a call to strengthen international cooperation in the interest of both nations and peoples as the world begins to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres said: “Covid19, conflicts, hunger, poverty and the climate emergency remind us that our world is far from perfect. But they also make clear that solidarity is the only way forward.

“We need to come together to tackle great challenges and advance the Sustainable Development Goals.

“By ensuring that every person, everywhere, has access to COVID-19 vaccines sooner rather than later.

“By securing and upholding the rights and dignity of all people — especially the poorest and most disadvantaged, girls and women, and children and young people.

“By seeking an end to the conflicts that scar our world.

“By making bold climate commitments to save our planet — and living up to them.

“And by building global governance that is more inclusive, networked and effective — as detailed in my recent report, Our Common Agenda.”

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