Ban Says U.N.’s Top Priority Is Sustainable Development

During a speech to the World Trade Organization on Tuesday, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon laid out his vision for his next term, telling “trade officials and diplomats that ‘the United Nations’ top priority for this year and many years beyond will have to be sustainable development’ – lifting people out of poverty while working on environmental concerns,” the Associated Press reports. Ban “described sustainable development as a theme that would ‘tie together many other goals’ such as addressing climate change, global health, women’s issues and food, water and energy shortages,” according to the news service (Heilprin, 7/19).

In related news, the U.N. Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on the Millennium Development Goals Jeffrey Sachs on Monday said the emergency response to the drought in the Horn of Africa would not solve the recurring problem of hunger and climate change in the region, the South African Press Association/News24 reports. “We can never address these problems through emergency response. We have to solve these problems through prevention,” Sachs said, adding, “Prevention means development, especially sustainable development” (7/19).