“Diversity must be seen as source of strength”: Antonio Guterres

United Nations: United Nation Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said that diversity must be seen as a source of strength instead of threat in search for peace. Diversity should be seen as an anchor of peace and stability and a rallying point for every person to contribute to a better future for themselves, and for their societies, he said.

Addressing an open debate of the Security Council on diversity, state-building and the search for peace on Tuesday, Guterres said that "For countries emerging from the horrors of conflict and looking to a better future diversity must not be seen as a threat. It is a source of strength." Parties to conflict can agree to end hostilities. They can agree to begin the long process of rebuilding a country. And they can even join forces to reconstitute a government. But without including a wide range of diverse voices at every step of this process -- without bringing all people along -- any peace will be short-lived, he warned.

Long-standing grievances, inequalities, mistrust and social divisions do not simply vanish when the fighting stops. They can easily flare up again. And they can be worsened if people and groups hungry for change do not see their needs and vision for the future being addressed, he added. To promote inclusion in the process of rebuilding communities and sustaining peace, Guterres emphasized three areas for action. First, national institutions and laws must work for all people.

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