UN chief: Those blocking fleeing refugees should 'stand in their shoes'

Updated: 2015-09-17 10:10


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UN chief: Those blocking fleeing refugees should 'stand in their shoes'

Osama Abdul Mohsen, a Syrian refugee who was filmed being tripped up by a camerawoman as he fled police in Hungary with his young son, kisses his son Zaid upon their arrival at Barcelona's Sants train station September 16, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

The secretary-general said that after the summit on Sustainable Development Goals, and during the General Debate in the General Assembly he is calling on Sept. 30 for a "high-level meeting to mobilize a humane, effective and rights-based response to the refugee crisis." He also called on all states to shoulder their responsibilities and live up to their legal obligations.

While a good deal of his nearly three-quarters of an hour with reporters was focused on refugees, he was asked about such crises as Iraq and Syria, South Sudan, Ukraine and Yemen, and problems facing the United Nations such as allegations of sexual exploitation by peacekeepers, as well as long-standing issues as Cyprus, the Israeli-Palestinian question and reform of the United Nations, particularly of the Security Council.

Ban's favorite campaign of late, however, is getting 15 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to be formally adopted at a summit of 170 leaders beginning next week.

"The 2030 Agenda for sustainable development embodies the yearnings of people everywhere for lives of dignity on a healthy planet," Ban said. "It shows what (UN) member states can achieve when they work together in solidarity."

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