The UN Bubble

Visiting the site of UN Headquarters is like walking into a bubble; a microcosm of our world within my reach, coming to terms with the knowledge I’m no longer walking in New York City but on the grounds of an international territory.

The site of UN Headquarters is owned by the United Nations. It is an international territory. No federal, state or local officer or official of the United States, whether administrative, judicial, military or police, may enter UN Headquarters, except with the consent of and under conditions agreed to by the Secretary-General of the Organization.

United Nations Headquarters remains both a symbol of peace and a beacon of hope – in the present troubled times, more than ever.

Images taken during the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA 73)

Sculpture: “Consciousness”  by Mongolian artist Ochirbold Ayurza, a gift from Mongolia to the United Nations

September 27th, 2018

Turning Page

Proud to have been present, among representatives of the entire world, at the historic moment when the United Nations General Assembly appointed by acclamation the former Prime Minister of Portugal, António Guterres, as the next United Nations Secretary-General, succeeding Ban Ki-moon when he stepped down on 31 December 2016.

An emotional moment for everyone present including Mr. Guterres himself, who addressed the General Assembly in English, French and Portuguese.

‘I have faith in the United Nations because I believe in the universal values it stands for: peace, justice, human dignity, tolerance and solidarity. Based on these values, I believe that diversity in all its forms is a tremendous asset, and not a threat; that in societies that are more and more multi-ethnic, multi-cultural and multi-religious, diversity can bring us together, not drive us apart.

An extract from Mr. Guterres’ speech which I found particularly resonating.

António Guterres, Secretary General of the United Nations

October 13th, 2016

UN HQ

View from the terrace outside the Delegates’ Lounge. East River is on my back and Le Corbusier’s oblique design of the General Assembly building in the foreground. The Chrysler Building at the back looks so small because it sits half a mile away.

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September 15th, 2016