Author Archives: United Nations Information Office



New York, 27 August 2018 – The President of the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly, H.E. Mr. Miroslav Lajčák, attended the Political Symposium of the European Forum Alpbach 2018 on 25 and 26 August. On the margins of the Forum, he participated in a high-level retreat organized by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Austria entitled “The resilience of values: Reconciling diversity and universality”.

Addressing the retreat on the topic of “A Shrinking Universe? – Universality of rights 70 years after the Declaration of Human Rights”, the President gave his assessment of the state of play on human rights in international affairs. He stated that “Human rights are the basic recognition of equality” but and that they are not universal because everyone enjoys them, they are universal, because they stem from shared basic human needs. President Lajčák added that although the world has changed a lot since 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is crucial to humanity. He ended his intervention with calling on participants to use the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration to start a “new dialogue on human rights”

In Alpbach, the Assembly President also spoke at a session on “The Resilience of Values: the role of national and multilateral institutions in strengthening the international system” as a keynote speaker. The President’s statement addressed the interdependent relationship between national and international institutions, the General Assembly as primary multilateral institution, and the need for strong international system. He ended by saying that a strong international system is not just desirable – it is necessary, not only for progress, but also for survival. “

While in Austria, the President also met with H.E. Mr. Ban Ki-moon, former Secretary-General of the United Nations, and H.E. Mr. Heinz Fischer, former President of Austria, who are also the founders of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens. During that meeting, they discussed current global affairs and the work of the United Nations General Assembly. Mr. Lajčák commended the two on the work of the Bank Ki-moon Centre.

With Mr. Serge Brammertz, Prosecutor of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, Mr. Lajčák spoke about the work of the international judicial institutions and about global challenges to multilateralism.

The President returned to New York on 26 August.

The many areas of support by Mr. Ban Ki-moon – former Secretary General include the help in the establishment of the Institute for Sustainable Development at the Al-Farabi Kazakh National university in Almaty. Similar to the Ban Ki-moon Center for Global Citizens, the BKMISD promotes partnership for implementing the Sustainable Development Goals through educational, research and international cooperation activities.

Meeting dedicated to the memory of the UN Secretary-General, Mr. Kofi Annan

August 22, 2018 in al-Farabi Kazakh National University, a meeting was held in memory of the former United Nations Secretary-General and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Mr. Kofi Annan. The event was attended by the leadership of the University in the person of Professor Mukhambetkali Myrzabaevich Burkitbaev – the first pro-rector of the al-Farabi KazNU, Rafis Abazov – Director of the Ban Ki-Moon Institute for Sustainable Development at al Farabi KazNU, as well as invited guests from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan – Ruslan Iskanderovich Bultrikov, Head of the Representative Office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Almaty, and Akmaral Haydarovna Arystanbekova – Kazakhstan statesman, the first Permanent Representative of Kazakhstan to the UN and the Ambassador-at-Large of the MFA of the RK. Representatives of the United Nations also took part in the event. Acting director of the UNIC Mr. Abdurakhim Mukhidov, through the video channel – the representative of the UN Department of Public Information in Kazakhstan, Mr. Vlastimil Samek, the head of the program office of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime in the Republic of Kazakhstan, Mr. Reginald Pitts.
The audience was attended by scientists, university experts, young scientists and students.

At this event, the participants discussed the importance of Mr. Kofi Annan’s contribution to the cause of strengthening international harmony and the unity of the peoples of the world, through the prism of historical memory. Muhambetkali Myrzabaevich Burkitbayev in his speech noted the contribution of Mr. Kofi Annan “in improving international relations, as well as in the development of cooperation between Kazakhstan and the United Nations.” It should be recalled that Mr. Kofi Annan was the first Secretary-General of the United Nations to visit Kazakhstan.
In his speech, Ruslan Iskanderovich noted that “for all diplomats of the world, the death of Mr. Annan’s life is a very great loss, since the Secretary-General enjoyed special respect in the field of the protection of international rights.”
Akmaral Khaidarovna, who was personally acquainted with Mr. Kofi Annan, on a business trip, noting his remarkable human qualities. “He always supported gender equality, very kindly treated all people, instructing on the peaceful resolution of any problems.” It was also indicated that “in an unusual calm character,” carried profound wisdom and humor through his entire life. “I think that the name of Kofi Atta Anna will be preserved in our memory as a genius personality,” Akmaral Khaydarovna concluded.
As part of the event, participants shared their assessment of the personality of Kofi Annan and his activities as a person, giving much to the service of the United Nations and the whole of humanity. Thus, Mr. Abdurakhim Mukhidov noted the contribution of Kofi Annan “to the strengthening of the UN Institute itself”. In continuation of the speech of UN representatives in Kazakhstan, Mr. Vlastimil Samek added that “the former UN Secretary-General in recent years has continued active work to resolve the most acute problems of our time”, citing an example with the Syrian crisis. ”
Mr. Reginald Pitts noted the personality of Kofi Annan “as a leader and reformer of the United Nations, who did a lot and left the organization at its best.”
It should be noted that this event was organized by the Institute for Sustainable Development Ban Ki-Moon (BKMISD) at the al-Farabi Kazakh National University (KazNU) together with the United Nations Information Office (UNIC), the United Nations Global Hub for Academic Influence (UNAI) on Sustainable Development, the MDP Global Classroom, the Central Asian Program Center of UNESCO UNITWIN and the UN Model New Silk Road “.
In the final part of the event, the moderator of the round table, Mr. Rafis Abazov, highlighted key moments in the activity of Kofi Annan in the post of secretary general. As they were writing, “Kofi Annan rose to the post of UN Secretary General from the very bottom. Obviously, he was a good manager and was good at work. ”

All the speakers of the round table, expressing sincere words of condolences to the family of Mr. Kofi Annan, also expressed their sorrow for the total loss.

International Day against Nuclear Tests

Since nuclear weapons testing began on 16 July 1945, nearly 2,000 have taken place. In the early days of nuclear testing little consideration was given to its devastating effects on human life, let alone the dangers of nuclear fallout from atmospheric tests. Hindsight and history have shown us the terrifying and tragic effects of nuclear weapons testing, especially when controlled conditions go awry, and in light of the far more powerful and destructive nuclear weapons that exist today.
The human and environmental tragedies that are the result of nuclear testing are compelling reasons for the need to observe the International Day against Nuclear Tests – a day in which educational events, activities and messages aim to capture the world’s attention and underscore the need for unified efforts to prevent further nuclear weapons testing.
The international instrument to put an end to all forms of nuclear testing is the 1996 Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), unfortunately, this has yet to enter into force.
On 2 December 2009, the 64th session of the United Nations General Assembly declared 29 August the International Day against Nuclear Tests by unanimously adopting resolution 64/35. The resolution calls for increasing awareness and education “about the effects of nuclear weapon test explosions or any other nuclear explosions and the need for their cessation as one of the means of achieving the goal of a nuclear-weapon-free world.” The resolution was initiated by the Republic of Kazakhstan, together with a large number of sponsors and cosponsors with a view to commemorating the closure of the Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test site on 29 August 1991. The Day is meant to galvanize the United Nations, Member States, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, youth networks and the media to inform, educate and advocate the necessity of banning nuclear weapon tests as a valuable step towards achieving a safer world.


21 August 2018
Terrorism is one of the most challenging issues of our time and a serious threat to international peace and security. From Tajikistan to the United Kingdom, from Baghdad to Barcelona, these ruthless attacks have shaken us all to the core. No country can consider itself immune, with almost every nationality in the world falling victim to terrorist attacks.
The United Nations itself is regularly targeted. Twenty-two people lost their lives in the attack on the headquarters of the United Nations mission in Iraq, which took place 15 years ago this week. Some of our peacekeeping missions are under constant threat.
But after terrorist attacks, we rarely hear about those who were killed and injured; the ordinary women, men, girls and boys, who were going about their daily business when their lives ended or were changed forever. We rarely hear about their surviving families, friends and communities, who must learn to live with the burden of terrorism for their entire lives.
Today, the International day of Remembrance of, and Tribute to, the victims of terrorism, reminds us to stop and listen to the victims and survivors of terrorism, to raise up their voices and recognize the impact terrorism has on their lives.
We can all learn from their experiences. Communities around the world are demonstrating their resilience in response to terrorist attacks. They are countering terrorism and violent extremism in their everyday lives, in their schools, markets and places of worship.
Supporting victims and their families is a moral imperative, based on promoting, protecting and respecting their human rights. Caring for victims and survivors and amplifying their voices helps to challenge the narrative of hatred and division that terrorism aims to spread. We need to provide victims with long-term assistance, including financial, legal, medical and psychosocial support.

When we lift up the victims and survivors of terrorism, listen to their voices, respect their rights and provide them with support and justice, we are honouring our common bonds, and reducing the lasting damage done by terrorists to individuals, families and communities.
I thank those who are willing to speak out against terrorism every day. Your voices matter, and your courage in the face of adversity is a lesson to us all.
Today and every day, the United Nations stands in solidarity with you.

Al-Farabi KazNU presented global projects of the Ban Ki-moon Institute of Sustainable Development

August 16, 2018. During the celebration of the International Youth Day, the Al-Farabi Kazakh National University (KazNU) presented global projects of the Institute of Sustainable Development named after Ban Ki-moon (BKMISD).
The al-Farabi University, being a global hub for the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI) on sustainability, plans to present these projects at a major international forum in Alpbach, Austria in late August this year.

As part of the celebration of the International Youth Day, Professor Mukhambetkali Burkitbayev – the First Vice-Rector of KazNU presented the academic and research programs of the Institute of Sustainable Development to the international academic community, teachers and students of KazNU. He noted that it was the initiative of the former UN Secretary General Mr. Ban Ki-moon that led to the establishment of the United Nations global projects such as the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI), the program of global citizenship, as well as the Sustainable Development Goals.
In May 2018, the KazNU has opened the Ban Ki-moon Institute for Sustainable Development, becoming the world’s third global hub of the Ban Ki-moon international centers. This allows the university to become a global think tank and contribute to sustainable development at many international venues, including platforms of international economic forums such as the Astana Economic Forum (AEF), the Eastern Economic Forum (WEF), and others.
“We greatly appreciate the cooperation with the UN Office in Kazakhstan, and especially the United Nations Department of Public Information (UNIC) in Kazakhstan, and the Representative Office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Almaty, which is actively working to turn Almaty into a regional hub of the UN, “- said Vice-Rector M. Burkitbayev.
“It is a great honor for me to work together with such a university as al-Farabi KazNU” – said the UN representative, the acting director of the UNIC Mr. Abdurahim Muhidov – “Its innovative approach in studying and implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is highly valued in the UN system, in the country and in the region.”
“KazNU is a recognized leader in promoting the UN initiatives aimed at addressing the challenges of sustainable development. The opening of the Ban Ki-moon Institute for Sustainable Development is a great honor and great responsibility” said Director of the Ban Ki-moon Institute for Sustainable Development Professor Rafis Abazov at the meeting. He also stressed that the Institute can contribute to better policy coordination and policy making on the SDGs not only in Kazakhstan but also in the Central Asian region, especially in developing new approaches to managing “smart” sustainable cities and “smart” universities.
He presented the Institute’s innovative programs in three main areas:
– Smart sustainable cities and urbanization;
– Stable (green) energy management and the future of energy balance;
– Sustainable ecosystems, ecotourism and the sustainable future of the planet.
“We are pleased that the country’s leading university KazNU has launched the Institute for Sustainable Development. Our cooperation with the UN agencies and all other interested parties would reach a qualitatively new high level, in discussing the use of new technologies and new managerial approaches in solving world’s problems and challenges, “said the Director of the Institute R. Abazov.
The head of the Representative Office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Almaty Mr. Ruslan Bultrikov spoke about the contribution of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the work of the UN in promoting the concept of “sustainable development” among the international community. He stressed the importance of the activities of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the academic community of KazNU in discussing the challenges of the 21st century at the Rio+20 international forum (2012) and the subsequent contribution of Kazakhstan in the preparation and adoption of the global concept of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDGs) in 2015.
The representative of the United Nations Department of Public Information in Kazakhstan, Mr. Vlastimil Samek – currently the acting interim director of DPI UN in Islamabad – addressed the meeting through the video link from his current assignment. He stressed the importance of the International Youth Day in recognizing the role of young people in the world in realizing the Sustainable Development Goals and addressing the challenges of global climate change.



New York, 19 August 2018

We mark World Humanitarian Day every year on 19 August, to express solidarity with people affected by humanitarian crises and pay tribute to the humanitarian workers who help them.
This year’s commemoration marks the fifteenth anniversary since the attack on the United Nations in Baghdad, Iraq, in which 22 of our colleagues were killed. Since that tragedy, which led to this day’s designation as World Humanitarian Day, over 4,000 aid workers have been killed, injured, detained or kidnapped. That is an average of 300 fellow humanitarians killed, detained or injured every year.
Civilians in conflict zones also continue to be killed and maimed, deliberately or in indiscriminate attacks. Last year, the United Nations recorded the deaths or injuries of more than 26,000 civilians in attacks in just six countries: Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Somalia and Yemen.

Around the world, conflict is forcing record numbers of people from their homes, with over 65 million people now displaced. Children are recruited by armed groups and used to fight. Women are abused and humiliated. As humanitarian workers deliver aid and medical workers provide for those in need, they are all too often targeted or treated as threats.

On World Humanitarian Day, I call on global leaders to do everything in their power to protect people caught up in conflict.

And I call on all who are concerned to join our campaign at to show that civilians are #NotATarget.

Together, we stand in solidarity with civilians in conflict, and with the humanitarian workers who risk their lives to help them.


International Youth Day

August 12 is the International Youth Day. It was established by the UN General Assembly on December 17, 1999, and aims to recall the role of young people in the development and building of peace, as well as the everyday problems that stand in their way.

This year’s theme is “Safe spaces for Youth”, which means that it is necessary to create favorable conditions for young people in all aspects of their development, to unlock potential, improve life and provide new opportunities.

In honor of the International Youth Day, Y-PEER Kazakhstan together with the United Nations Population Fund and the United Nations Information Office in Kazakhstan held a forum where important issues and problems of young people were discussed today. The forum was attended by experts from various fields:

Assistant Professor of International and Criminal Law at the School of Law of the University of KIMEP Sergey Sayapin shared with the participants the extent to which education has changed today.

Colorist, entrepreneur and a man who is fond of movies and content marketing, Vitaly Buzhan told how important attention is in our time.

Candidate of Science in al-Farabi KazNU, curator of the Almaty hub Global Shapers Community Gaukhar Nursha held a presentation on cities that act as safe spaces for young people.

The expert in the field of marketing and communications, the President of the Digitalization of Cultural and Historical Heritage “D-mura” Dimash Kunaev shared his opinion on security on the Internet.

The founder of and social entrepreneur Ardak Berdibekov shared his experience on the topic of social entrepreneurship and the possibility of solving problems through organizing his own business.

Thanks to our experts, we were able to address the issues of education, self-development, safe cities, security in cyberspace, social entrepreneurship and its impact.

We believe in the potential of every young man, we just need to stop waiting, but take the initiative and start acting!
#Youth #YouthDay # SafeSpaces4Youth

Indonesia: Psychological impact on earthquake survivors turns villages into ‘ghost towns’

Mathew Cochrane, Spokesperson for the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) , briefed reporters saying that “about 80 per cent of buildings had been damaged or destroyed,” in the north of the island, which is home to around 200,000 people, adding to the destruction caused by an earlier quake on 29 July.

“Thousands of people were displaced and the main needs right now are emergency shelter and basic relief,” he said, elaborating that because the IFRC is still unable to access some remote villages, “we are far from having a complete picture of the damage.”