The Secretary-General Message on World Humanitarian Day

Islamabad: (UN Information Centre) – In December 2008, the sixty-third session of the UN General Assembly decided to designate 19 August as World Humanitarian Day (A/RES/63/139).

19 August is the date on which a brutal terrorist attack on UN headquarters in Baghdad in 2003 killed 22 people, including UN envoy Sergio Vieira de Mello.

World Humanitarian Day honours those, who have lost their lives in humanitarian service and those, who continue to bring assistance and relief to millions.

The UN Secretary-General issued the following message on this Day:

“There is never a year without humanitarian crises. And wherever there are people in need, there are people who help them – men and women coming together to ease suffering and bring hope. From Japan to Sudan, from Pakistan to the Horn of Africa, aid workers help people who have lost their homes, loved ones and sources of income.

These humanitarians often brave great danger, far from home. They work long hours, in the most difficult conditions. Their efforts save lives in conflict and natural disaster. They also draw the world closer together by reminding us that we are one family, sharing the same dreams for a peaceful planet, where all people can live in safety, and with dignity.

On World Humanitarian Day, we honour these aid workers and thank them for their dedication. And we pay tribute to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice – in Afghanistan, Haiti and beyond. Too many have died, or suffered their own loss, in the course of duty. We pledge to do all we can to ensure the world’s humanitarians are kept safe to do their essential work.

This is also a day to examine our own lives and consider what more we can do to help to reach out to people enduring conflict, disaster and hardship. Let those we honour today inspire us to start our own journey to make the world a better place and bring our human family more closely together.”

For more information, contact:
Ms. Ishrat Rizvi
National Information Officer
United Nations Information Centre (UNIC)
Islamabad
Tel: +9251 835 5720
Cell: +92300 855 3790
Email: ishrat.rizvi@unic.org

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