Washington, D.C. (Sept. 21, 2021) – Peter Yeo, President of the Better World Campaign, released the following statement following President Biden’s first address before the 76th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA):
“Today’s speech from President Biden before the UN General Assembly was a testament to his Administration’s renewed commitment to international cooperation, with not just words but concrete actions.
“Within his first year as President, Biden rejoined the Paris Climate Agreement, restored U.S. membership and funding of the World Health Organization, and moved to re-engage with the UN Human Rights Council. In addition, President Biden’s first federal budget request called for full funding of the UN’s regular and peacekeeping budgets and for a $300 million down-payment on outstanding arrears. The administration also reinstituted funding for various UN entities including the UN Population Fund and UNRWA, the agency that aids Palestinian refugees.
“Specifically during the speech:
- “Calling the coming years ‘a decisive decade’ for the world, President Biden pressed world leaders for greater action on COVID-19 and climate change during his inaugural address, while repeatedly underscoring the value and mission of the United Nations.
- “The President said ‘new mechanisms’ were needed to finance global health security to prevent future pandemics, while reminding the world that the U.S. has donated $15 billion toward vaccines through COVAX, an initiative sponsored in part by the World Health Organization.
- “On climate change, Biden asked world leaders to bring ‘their highest ambition,’ saying the world is ‘fast approaching a point of no return.’
- “The President repeatedly reminded world leaders of the UN’s founding values as represented in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, values “stamped into the DNA” of the United Nations.”
“From COVID to climate, each commitment outlined in President Biden’s remarks relies on a strong partnership between the U.S. and the UN, which majorities of Americans stand behind.