They said it: Leaders at the UN, in their own words

Via AP news wire
Thursday 21 September 2023 01:53 BST

Many leaders saying many things about many topics that matter to them, to their regions, to the world: That’s what the U.N. General Assembly invariably produces each year.

And each year, certain voices dominate. Here, The Associated Press takes the opposite approach and spotlights some thoughts — delivered from the rostrum at the United Nations — from leaders who might have not captured the headlines and airtime on Wednesday, the second day of the 2023 debate.


“I always say that you do not make peace with your friends. You make peace with your enemies.”

— Hage Geingob, president of Namibia


“This is my fourth statement to this global body. And since then, I’m afraid to conclude that not much has changed for the better regarding the essential elements of peace, prosperity and climate in our world. ”

— Chandrikapersad Santokhi, president of Suriname


“We need to wake up. We are not battling an external threat. This is not a meteor heading for Earth. This is an existential crisis that we created — and we alone must solve.”

— Zuzana Čaputová, president of Slovakia


“The world — the leaders that came before us — inherited ashes, not institutions. They had no choice but to look to multilateralism, to international law, respect for the sovereignty and the territorial integrity of all states. Today, as we stand on the shoulders of our predecessors, we remain accountable to deliver on the vision of peace that sparked the creation of this resilient organization.”

— Nikos Christodoulides, president of Cyprus


“Just as women’s roles and contributions are essential for both the harmony and prosperity of nations and well-being of families, women and female leaders play a critical role in security and development of humankind.”

— Khurelsukh Ukhnaa, president of Mongolia

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