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U.N.’s Ban Urges Countries To Commit to Sustainable Development Agenda

In a letter to members of the G20, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon last week “called on countries to show leadership and commitment to achieve a sustainable future,” the U.N. News Centre reports. Meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia, this week, the “G20 comprises Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States, as well as the European Union,” the news service notes. “Implementing a sustainable development agenda calls for renewed progress in trade, finance, technology and knowledge-sharing. I count on you to bring stability to the global economy and lead the way to sustainable development for all,” Ban wrote, according to the news service (8/30).

On Sunday, Ban “urged participants at the European Forum Alpbach to boost action towards achieving the anti-poverty targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and to shape a shared vision for a universal sustainable development agenda,” the U.N. News Centre reports in a separate article. “‘Our shared challenge is to conquer the persistent problems of old — poverty, hunger, disease and hatred — while building a new landscape of peace, prosperity and dignity for all,’ Mr. Ban said in a message delivered by Valerie Amos, under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs to the closing session of the forum,” the news service writes, noting the annual “forum brings together academics, students, and decision makers from all areas to discuss and brainstorm new ideas and solutions to European and global problems, according to the event website” (8/31).