During her address to the 77th UN General Assembly session in New York, President Katalin Novák said Hungary urges members of the United Nations to declare peace a top priority amid the Russia-Ukraine conflict.
Marking the UN’s International Day of Peace, she noted that the organization had been set up with the primary goal of ensuring peace as laid out in the UN Charter. Noting the war in Ukraine, Novák said “it fills us with particular concern, especially because ethnic Hungarians living across the borders also shed their blood.” Hungary firmly condemns Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, which has caused tremendous suffering and destruction and has serious ramifications for the global order, she said. Since the start of the conflict, Hungary has stood by the war’s victims, Novák said, adding that “the greatest humanitarian action in Hungary’s history” was underway, with private individuals, churches, civic groups, municipalities and the government providing shelter to some one million people since the outbreak of the war.
“What do we want in the UN? To win the war?” the president said, adding that the aim was to restore peace. President Novák also noted Hungary’s membership in several organisations besides the UN, such as NATO, the European Union and the Council of Europe. Those organisations were primarily established to serve the cause of peace and “the service of peace is the foundation of their identity”, she said. “It is by no means self-evident, that today, at the time of war, energy and food crises, the organisations set up to avoid war and preserve peace are focusing on ideological indoctrination,” the president said. Novák quoted the recently deceased Queen Elizabeth II as saying in the UN in 2010 that “the waging of peace is the hardest form of leadership”. “Today, on the International Day of Peace, I stand here to urge the world leaders to be faithful to the legacy of Elizabeth II, so that we can live in peace,” she said.
Photo credit: Facebook/Novák Katalin