Monthly Archives: August 2016

The 50th anniversary of International Literacy Day

50th anniversary of International Literacy DayThis year marks the 50th anniversary of International Literacy Day and UNESCO is celebrating it under the banner “Reading the Past, Writing the Future”. International Literacy Day 2016 celebrates and honours the past five decades of national and international engagement, efforts and progress made to increase literacy rates around the world. It also addresses current challenges and looks to innovative solutions to further boost literacy in the future.

Fifty years ago, UNESCO officially proclaimed 8 September International Literacy Day to actively mobilize the international community and to promote literacy as an instrument to empower individuals, communities and societies.

Now International Literacy Day is celebrated worldwide, bringing together governments, multi- and bilateral organizations, NGOs, private sectors, communities, teachers, learners and experts in the field. On this day also International Literacy Prizes are awarded to people with outstanding solutions that can drive literacy towards achieving the 2030 Education Agenda. This year the focus is on innovation.

This is the first year of implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In this context the vision of literacy is aligned with lifelong learning opportunities with special focus on youth and adults. Literacy is a part of Sustainable Development Goal 4, which aims to “ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all”. The target is that by 2030 all youth and a substantial proportion of adults, both men and women, achieve literacy and numeracy (SDG Target 4.6).

The International Literacy Day will be celebrated all around the world. The main global celebration of the day will take place at UNESCO Headquarters, Paris in the form of a two-day conference on 8 – 9 September, the highlight of which will be the awarding of the Literacy Prizes. At the same time the Global Alliance for Literacy (GAL) will be launched, a new and ambitious initiative to make all major stakeholders pull together to promote literacy as a foundation for lifelong learning.

Remarks by UN Resident Coordinator in Uzbekistan on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of Uzbekistan’s independence

25th anniversary of Uzbekistan’s independenceOn September 1, 1991, the Republic of Uzbekistan became a sovereign nation and entered a new period in its history. This year Uzbekistan will celebrate 25 years of independence. In a relatively short period of time, the country has achieved important milestones in moving forward its socio-economic development through a process of gradual reforms.

As a signatory to the Millennium Declaration adopted in 2000, Uzbekistan has made good progress in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, due to sustainable high rates of economic growth and the implementation of effective programmes in the social sector, particularly in education and health.  It shows that policies and actions, backed by adequate funding and political commitment, does yield results.

The United Nations (UN) in Uzbekistan commends the goal “to build an open democratic and law governed state, in which a person, his interests, his rights and freedoms are the highest value” as articulated in “The Concept of further deepening the democratic reforms and establishing the civil society in the country”. Recent improvements of legislation on strengthening the role of the parliament and openness of state bodies can be highlighted as part of these evolutionary reforms. Indeed, human development, economic development and democratization have to go hand in hand to fully unleash a country’s potential.

Through our joint programmes and projects with the Government, the UN has been facilitating the country’s efforts to complement positive economic growth rates with effective social policies both at local and national levels, through policy advice and capacity development, as well as by sharing knowledge and experiences from other parts of the world. Our support covers areas from economic reform to improving governance. We assist in healthcare, including maternal and child health, and education reform and social protection. We support the preservation of Uzbekistan’s cultural treasures and the conservation of its natural resources and biodiversity. We also help efforts to counter drug trafficking and the spread of HIV/AIDS.

Since independence, Uzbekistan has ratified and signed onto several UN Conventions on the protection of human rights, on security, environmental protection and other areas, and the United Nations is supporting the Republic of the Uzbekistan in the implementation of these conventions.

Uzbekistan effectively cooperates within the framework of the UN General Assembly and with the various specialized institutions of the UN system.  In the framework of the United Nations, the Republic of Uzbekistan put forward a number of important initiatives in the field of ensuring international peace and security, for example through the creation of Nuclear Weapon Free Zone in Central Asia.

We express deep respect to Uzbekistan’s strong commitment to peaceful settlement of disputes and refraining from the use of force in international relations as it was reflected in the Concept of foreign policy activity of Uzbekistan adopted in 2012. We appreciate the acknowledgement by the country of the UN’s coordinating role in maintaining international peace and security as well as expressed commitment to pursue a foreign policy in the spirit of cooperation and friendliness in relation with regional neighbors.

Most recently in September 2015, Uzbekistan, together with other UN member states, supported the adoption of the global agenda 2030 – the Sustainable Development Goals.  The United Nations system in Uzbekistan welcomes and stands ready to assist Uzbekistan’s efforts on nationalization and implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in the country. We particularly look forward to further strengthening our collaboration within the framework of the United Nations Development Assistance Framework for Uzbekistan for 2016-2020, which builds on national priorities and ensures a solid link to global agenda 2030. 

The UN in Uzbekistan congratulates the people of Uzbekistan at the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the national independence and wishes lots of prosperity, peace and wellbeing. 


On International Day, UN says youth can lead global drive for a more sustainable future

International Youth Day 2016The world’s young people – who make up the largest generation of youth in history – can lead a global drive to break the patterns of the past and set the world on course to a more sustainable future, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said youth, with their creativity and idealism are the key to delivering the goals of the new UN sustainability agenda.

“Young people are directly affected by the tragic contradictions that prevail today: between abject poverty and ostentatious wealth, gnawing hunger and shameful food waste, rich natural resources and polluting industries,” said Mr. Ban in his message on International Youth Day, celebrated annually on 12 August.

He said that youth can deliver solutions on such issues, which lie at the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, stressing that in the first year of that15-year plan for a healthier, safer and more just future, the International community is counting on the active engagement of young people to transform the production and consumption of goods and services so they meet the basic needs and aspirations of the world’s poorest people without overburdening already strained ecosystems.

“Young people are traditionally at the cutting edge, and today’s youth have more information than any previous generation. Their dynamism, creativity and idealism can combine to shape attitudes toward demand and help create more sustainable industries,” continued the UN chief, noting that youth are already influencing how the world produces, distributes and consumes while driving green entrepreneurship by designing sustainable products and services.

As conscious consumers, young people are at the forefront of a shift toward more fair, equitable and sustainable buying patterns. Youth are strong and effective advocates of recycling, reusing and limiting waste, and they are leading technological innovations to foster a resource-efficient economy.

“When we invest in youth, they can contribute to new markets, decent jobs, fair trade, sustainable housing, sustainable transport and tourism, and more opportunities that benefit the planet and people,” he said, adding that he was proud that the UN is actively engaged in supporting young leaders who can carry out the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including Goal 12 on sustainable consumption and production patterns.

“I encourage all young people to become involved in advancing the SDGs and demanding action by their Governments. My Youth Envoy is eager to connect you to our campaigns, which are being carried out across the entire United Nations system,” he said urging others to join this global push for progress, empowering young people with the resources, backing and space they need to create lasting change in our world.

In her message, Irina Bokova, Director General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) said that young people are powerful agents of positive change, essential to taking forward the 2030 Agenda.

“It is not enough to hope for a better tomorrow – we must act now. Change is under way, and millions of citizens are already transforming the way we produce, consume, behave and communicate,” she said, noting that young people such as #YouthofUNESCO sustainable consumption advocate Lauren Singer, point the way towards a zero-waste lifestyle, fitting all of her refuse produced over the past four years into one small jar.

“This is an inspiration for this year’s celebration – ‘The Road to 2030: Eradicating Poverty and Achieving Sustainable Production and Consumption.’ There are countless initiatives like this, all giving shape to a new humanism, to new forms of solidarity and citizenship to combat poverty, marginalization and despair,” she emphasized.

Optimism and confidence do not mean minimizing the challenges ahead. Most young people live today in least developed countries, and shoulder the heaviest burden of conflicts and poverty, stressed Ms. Bokova, adding: “There can be no sustainable development if they remain on the side-lines, and I call upon all Member States and UNESCO partners to support their initiatives, to give them voice, to let them grow, to shape together the future of dignity that we are building today.”

International Youth Day Celebrated in Tashkent

International Youth Day Celebrated in TashkentInternational Youth Day is celebrated with a sport event at the National Water Sports Development Centre in Tashkent. Women’s Committee of Uzbekistan and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) joined hands in organizing the celebration of this annual observance.

The International Youth Day is marked annually on 12 August. This observance, celebrated by thousands of young people, activists, and youth organizations worldwide, brings public attention to important issues related to youth; in particular the need for better addressing youth concerns in international development efforts.

The theme of the 2016 International Youth Day is “The Road to 2030: Eradicating Poverty and Achieving Sustainable Consumption and Production”. This year’s Day is about achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Sustainable Development Goals recently adopted by the international community. It focuses on the leading role of young people in ensuring poverty eradication and achieving sustainable development through sustainable consumption and production. Sustainable consumption entails the use of products and services that meet the basic needs of communities while safeguarding the needs of future generations.

As part of the celebration of the International Youth Day in Tashkent a swimming competition among the adolescent girls of 11-14 years, followed by a synchronized swimming performance, as well as choreography and performances of creative groups, were organized. One of the exciting moments of the event was the awarding ceremony of winners of swimming competitions among more than 100 participants.

The event is to promote healthy lifestyles among young people. Promoting access to sports, education, healthcare, including reproductive health and family planning services – is  key to sustainable development.

«UNFPA is proud to partner with young people in more than 150 countries and territories around the world to promote their participation and leadership, enabling them to overcome barriers, spearhead innovations and unleash their full potential» – marked Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, Under Secretary-General and UNFPA Executive Director, in his Statement for the International Youth Day.


The United Nations and the Olimpic truce

The United Nations and the Olimpic truceThe ancient Greek tradition of the ekecheiria, or “Olympic Truce”, was born in the eighth century B.C., serving as a hallowed principle of the Olympic Games. In 1992, the International Olympic Committee renewed this tradition by calling upon all nations to observe the Truce. Through its resolution 48/11 of 25 October 1993, the General Assembly urged Member States to observe the Olympic Truce from the seventh day before the opening to the seventh day following the closing of each Olympic Games. This appeal was renewed in the Millennium Declaration.

The Olympic movement aspires to contribute to a peaceful future for humankind through the educational value of sport. It brings together athletes from all parts of the world in the greatest of international sports events, the Olympic Games, and it aims to promote the maintenance of peace, mutual understanding and goodwill — goals it shares with the United Nations. As an expression of these common objectives, in 1998 the International Olympic Committee decided to fly the United Nations flag at all competition sites of the Olympic Games. The United Nations for its part, is expanding its cooperation with the International Olympic Committee and the Olympic family at large through a number of agreements and partnerships.