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‘Let us consign poverty to the pages of history’, says UN secretary-general

NEW YORK, USA – The following is the UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message on the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, observed on 17 October:

“As we mark the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, we face a harsh truth: the world is moving backwards.

COVID-19 plunged millions into poverty, setting back more than four years of hard-won progress. Inequalities are widening. National and household economies are battered by job losses, skyrocketing food and energy prices, and the gathering shadows of a global recession.

At the same time, the climate crisis and raging conflicts are causing immense suffering, with the poorest people bearing the brunt. Developing countries are being squeezed dry, denied access to resources and debt relief to invest in recovery and growth. The Sustainable Development Goals are being pushed far out of reach.

The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is a wake-up call to the world. This year’s theme – “Dignity for all in practice” – must be a rallying cry for urgent global action.

Action to invest in people-centred solutions – from health and decent work, to gender equality, social protection, and transformed food and education systems. Action to transform a morally bankrupt global financial system and ensure access to financing and debt relief for all countries.

Action to support developing countries as they transition from planet-killing fossil fuels to renewable energy and job-creating green economies. Action to end conflicts, heal geopolitical divisions and pursue peace. And action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

“On this important day, let us renew our commitment to a better world for all. Let us consign poverty to the pages of history.”



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