New UN chief: 2017 is “year for global peace”

The new UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has pledged to make 2017 a year for global peace.

On his first day at the helm of UN, Guterres stated: “I ask all of you to join me in making one shared New Year’s resolution: Let us resolve to put peace first.”

The new UN chief said one question weighs heavy on his heart. “That is: how can we help the millions of people caught up in conflict, suffering massively in wars with no end in sight?.”

According to him: “Peace must be our goal and our guide”, urging all citizens, governments and leaders to strive to overcome differences.

“I appeal to you all to join me in committing to peace, today and every day. Let us make 2017 a year for peace,” he added.

Guterres, aged 67, was formally appointed by the UN General Assembly on 13 October 2016 and will serve for a five-year period from 1 January, 2017 to 31 December 2021.

He was former Prime Minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002, and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees from June 2005 to December 2015.

During his oath of office at the UN General Assembly, the new UN chief also pledged to work for peace, development and a reformed UN.