Time of Test, Era of Opportunity

Selected Speeches of United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, 2007–2016

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This publication features a selection of speeches delivered by the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon during his tenure from 2006 to 2016, a decade that has witnessed considerable upheaval and transformation. The most important issues of our time are addressed in this volume, ranging from international peace and security to sustainable development, climate change to disarmament, humanitarian action to human rights, justice and the rule of law, and the empowerment of women and girls and of the new generations. This collection of speeches provides vital insights into our rapidly changing world and of the multiple challenges facing humanity today.




To serve as Secretary-General of the United Nations is to occupy one of the world’s foremost bully pulpits. Throughout my tenure, I sought to make ample use of this unique platform – from the General Assembly Hall to houses of parliament, from the Security Council Chamber to classrooms, clinics and refugee camps across the world. I sought to assure the vulnerable that the United Nations is on their side; to mobilize civil society groups to play their indispensable role; and to put before world leaders sensible proposals for tackling the challenges of our time.


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