Wednesday, 20 January 2021

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Moving together as one

UN Photo IsaacBilly

20 December 2014 – In the same way as the spirit of solidarity has been uniting labour movements in their fight for improved working conditions, it can unite the international community in its efforts against global threats such as terrorism, epidemics or environmental threats. Solidarity played an important role in the banning of landmines, as Governments, civil society and individuals were united to oppose their use. Without solidarity among the global community it would be impossible to fight against disease such as AIDS or the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Similarly, only in the spirit of solidarity we can find sustainable solutions to address climate change and to protect those already being affected by it.

The spirit of solidarity unites people with common responsibilities and interests to reach common goals through collective action, and contribute to tackling today’s global challenges such as poverty, disease and conflict. Solidarity is also the foundation of the UN development agenda beyond 2015 and one of the six principles of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.

While many international days concentrate on a particular global threat, issue or a challenge, the International Human Solidarity Day (IHSD), celebrated on 20 December, highlights a value or a guiding principle vital to fighting any of the challenges and a prerequisite for the pursuit of other universal values such as equality, tolerance and harmony, while “Moving together as one”, which is this year’s theme for the observance.

The spirit of solidarity is essential for the work of the United Nations. In the Millennium Declaration world leaders identified solidarity as one of the fundamental values of international relations in the 21st century stating that those who either suffer or benefit least deserve help from those who benefit most. According to the Declaration, “global challenges must be managed in a way that distributes the costs and burdens fairly in accordance with basic principles of equity and social justice”. The implications of globalization, growing interdependence and increasing inequality make solidarity even more essential for today’s world.

On the IHSD 2014, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urges us “together as one to end poverty, achieve shared prosperity and peace, protect the planet and foster a life of dignity for all”.

Related links:

UNRIC’s article for IHSD 2012
DESA: International Human Solidarity Day

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