We have reached a new milestone as a human family. With seven billion of us now inhabiting our planet, it is time to ask some fundamental questions. How can we provide a dignified life for ourselves and future generations while preserving and protecting the global commons - the atmosphere, the oceans and the ecosystems that support us?
The Czech Republic is a dynamic United Nations Member State, active on the Human Rights Council, contributing to the peaceful settlement of disputes, and helping other countries to achieve a democratic transition.
The explosion in access to mobile phones and digital services means that people everywhere are contributing vast amounts of information to the global knowledge warehouse. Moreover, they are doing so for free, just by communicating, buying and selling goods and going about their daily lives.
Messengers of Peace such as Midori - and our Goodwill Ambassadors, who work directly with the UN agencies - are dedicated and well-informed and credible advocates on behalf of the United Nations. They help us educate audiences worldwide and rally support on key issues of the United Nations.
Defeating racism, tribalism, intolerance and all forms of discrimination will liberate us all, victim and perpetrator alike.
From the beginning of my time as Secretary-General, I have sought to advance a practical, action-oriented vision of the U.N. as the voice of the voiceless and the defender of the defenceless.
Strangely, charity sometimes gets dismissed, as if it is ineffective, inappropriate or even somehow demeaning to the recipient. 'This isn't charity,' some donors take pains to claim, 'This is an investment.' Let us recognize charity for what it is at heart: a noble enterprise aimed at bettering the human condition.
Climate change, demographics, water, food, energy, global health, women's empowerment - these issues are all intertwined. We cannot look at one strand in isolation. Instead, we must examine how these strands are woven together.
It is a sad but undeniable reality that people have died in the line of duty since the earliest days of the United Nations. The first was Ole Bakke, a Norwegian member of the United Nations guard detachment, shot and killed in Palestine in 1948. The toll since then has included colleagues at all levels.
Like the United Nations, there is something inspirational about New York as a great melting pot of different cultures and traditions. And if this is the city that never sleeps, the United Nations works tirelessly, around the clock around the world.
Nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation are not utopian ideals. They are critical to global peace and security.
Some might complain that nuclear disarmament is little more than a dream. But that ignores the very tangible benefits disarmament would bring for all humankind. Its success would strengthen international peace and security. It would free up vast and much-needed resources for social and economic development. It would advance the rule of law.
Nuclear disarmament is one of the greatest legacies we can pass on to future generations.
True security is based on people's welfare - on a thriving economy, on strong public health and education programmes, and on fundamental respect for our common humanity. Development, peace, disarmament, reconciliation and justice are not separate from security; they help to underpin it.
The possibility that terrorist groups could obtain weapons of mass destruction should not be dismissed as a fiction. This is a horrific threat the international community should take seriously. As long as these weapons exist, so, too, does the risk of their use - by accident or design.
Women and girls are disproportionately affected by landmines. They have different needs when it comes to education about risks. And they may face greater challenges when a family member is killed or injured.
I am disturbed by how states abuse laws on Internet access. I am concerned that surveillance programmes are becoming too aggressive. I understand that national security and criminal activity may justify some exceptional and narrowly-tailored use of surveillance. But that is all the more reason to safeguard human rights and fundamental freedoms.
We must confront persecution faced by many Christian communities and the intolerance that plagues us. We must overcome anti-Semitism and the prejudice that divides us. We must defeat Islamophobia and the fears that weaken us.
Saving our planet, lifting people out of poverty, advancing economic growth... these are one and the same fight. We must connect the dots between climate change, water scarcity, energy shortages, global health, food security and women's empowerment. Solutions to one problem must be solutions for all.
Weapons of mass destruction violate more than individual lives - they cross international borders and jeopardize all people. They also drain resources that could be used instead for medicines, schools and other life-saving supplies. We must come together with even greater determination to prevent a WMD nightmare.