UK development official says UN must be strengthened to meet current challenges

UK development official says UN must be strengthened to meet current challenges

The international community should increase its backing for the United Nations in order to meet present-day global challenges, Clare Short, the United Kingdom's Secretary of State for International Development, said today.

"I think we should always love the UN, but at the moment we need it desperately," Secretary Short said at a UN Day commemoration in London organized by the UN Information Centre. "We have to strengthen it."

"We have to resolve these problems multilaterally or we are all going to be in trouble," she cautioned.

Urging assembled dignitaries to grasp the current opportunities to meet the Millennium Development Goals set in 2000 to combat global ills, Ms. Short said they are "completely achievable for the first time in human history."

The current juncture, she said, is both "a very dangerous time for the world and a time when we have unprecedented international agreement about working together to reduce poverty, to get children into school, to spread healthcare." The international community, she added, has the knowledge, capital, and experience to succeed.

The current generation, she said, could destroy the world or could make it finer. "Let's, with the UN, make it finer," she said.