14 September 2005
Upon the opening of the 2005 World Summit being held from 14 to 16 September at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the Socialist International reiterates the need for the international community to make every effort to carry out the reforms necessary to enhance the work of the United Nations, to advance the initiatives required to achieve the Millennium Development Goals and to ensure a world that is safer, more democratic and more fair for everyone.
Concerns with regard to security, the environment and the unacceptable increase in poverty, and the growing realisation in the world that we need to act collectively in response, have given a renewed sense of urgency to the task of reforming the United Nations and opening the way to a new global governance. At the same time, the current threats to peace and the health of the planet are interconnected with the enormous challenges that the world must boldly and effectively address with regard to sustainable development, democratisation and human rights.
Since its founding the United Nations has been not only a symbol of the global yearning for peace, it has provided the principal framework for the international cooperation needed to ensure human progress in an increasingly complex and interdependent world. What must happen today is that all of its members actively work together to revitalise and strengthen this indispensable institution so that it can successfully meet the challenges of the 21st Century.
There is an opportunity now to establish global governance based on democratic interaction within the community of nations and a new multilateralism to promote peace and stability, fairness, gender equality and inclusion for all people at this time of rapid and uneasy change. The keys will be to provide all states the opportunity to participate directly in the process, and to guarantee the application of democratic principles within the United Nations as well as other international organisations at both the global and regional levels.
We must also move forward towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals that stem from the worldwide vision embraced at the 2000 UN Millennium Summit, and the International calls for determined and concerted efforts, not only at the global and regional but also at the national and especially the local levels, through cooperation between public and non-governmental sectors.
The Millennium Development Goals require a global partnership for development. The priority is to put in place the institutions and mechanisms most responsive to ordinary citizens, especially the poor who are striving to improve conditions in both urban and rural areas. Women, who bear the brunt of violent conflict, economic crisis and environmental degradation, must be fully empowered and play a central role in the decision-making and development process. This is the essence of thinking globally and acting locally, which today must be a fundamental pillar of governance at every level.
Meaningful reform of the United Nations and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals can be accomplished. Success requires the political will and steadfastness of all involved and it is hoped that the momentum attained thus far in both of these efforts can be enhanced at the Summit in New York and throughout the world in the months and years ahead. The lives of coming generations and the future of the planet depend on it.