The Holy See’s Permanent Observer at the United Nations, Archbishop Celestino Migliore, told delegates at the 62nd UN General Assembly that governments and nations should care for human life “at every level and in all corners of the world.”
After pointing out that nearly ten million children die each year from causes that could be prevented with adequate health care, the archbishop warned that, “The global community seems to have lost its compass for assuring the right to basic health care for all,” which needs to be a priority again in order to achieve the Millennium Goals and a better health care policy, he said.
He criticized the spending of large sums of money—“over a trillion dollars”—on military expenses and on the development of technology that “destroys lives on our planet.” In order to prevent this situation from worsening, the archbishop continued, the United Nations, “in cooperation with all of its member states, must renew its commitment to the preservation of all life at every level and in all corners of the world.”
Archbishop Migliore noted that some countries are contributing to the achieving of the Millennium Goals while others are not, and he called for “reforms that promote peace and security as well as respect for the law,” so that “public and private investment” would grow.
“The United Nations is asked more and more to respond to different challenges throughout the world,” the archbishop pointed out. “In order to meet the humanitarian needs, the United Nations should continue working to promote agreements with civil society that result in a predictable and proactive humanitarian reaction. The member states play a fundamental role with regards to humanitarian crises. By giving them secure and unrestricted access to humanitarian workers, they not only fulfill their responsibility to protect, but also assure those suffering from tragedies that they will not be victimized,” he stated.
Archbishop Migliore also called for greater religious freedom and for peace by resolving conflicts through dialogue. He also encouraged the UN to a deeper commitment to confronting the challenges of development, peace, security and human rights.