Mr. Secretary General ... Mr. President ... distinguished delegates ..ladies and gentlemen: Thank you for the opportunity to address the General Assembly of the United Nations.
Sixty years ago, representatives from 16 nations gathered to begin deliberations on a new international bill of rights. The document they produced is called the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and It stands as a landmark achievement In the history of human liberty. It opens by recognizing "the inherent dignity" and the "equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family" as "the foundation of freedom, justice, and peace in the world." And as we gather for this 62nd General Assembly, the standards of the Declaration must guide our work in the world.
Achieving the promise of the Declaration requires confronting longterm threats – and it also requires answering the immediate needs of today.
The nations in this chamber have our differences. Yet there are some areas where we can all agree. When innocent people are trapped In a life of murder and fear, the Declaration is not being upheld. When millions of children starve to death or perish from a mosquito bite, we are not doing our duty in the world. When whole societies are cut off from the prosperity of the global economy, we are all worse off. Changing these underlying conditions is what the Declaration calls the work of "larger freedom" – and It must be the work of every nation In this assembly.
This great institution must work for great purposes – to free people from tyranny and violence ... hunger and disease ... illiteracy and ignorance ... poverty and despair. And I call on every member of the United Nations to join In this mission of liberation.
First, the mission of the United Nations requires liberating people from tyranny and violence. The first article of the Universal Declaration begins, ."AII human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights."
This truth is denied by terrorists and extremists who ki11 the innocent with the aim of imposing their hateful vision on humanity. The followers of this violent ideology are a threat to civilized people everywhere. And all civilized nations must work together to stop them – by sharing intelligence about their networks ... choking off their finances ... and capturing or killing their operatives.