Ismail Serageldin


Keynote speech by Serageldin at UN Permanent Representatives Retreat

31/08/2015 | Alamein

At the UN Permanent Representatives Retreat held in Alamein under the theme “Towards Enabling Multilateralism: Partnerships for Enhancing the Contribution and Participation of All Member States in the Work of the United Nations”, Serageldin delivered opening remarks entitled “Towards An Enabling Multilateralism: Rethinking the Current World Order”. He expressed his views on the evolving world order starting from its foundation after the Second World War and examined what went wrong.


In his speech Serageldin said:

“…The world order that had so patiently been erected in the last seventy has become unraveled.  ...Today the present world order with its expected norms of behavior for the member states of the United Nations, is being severely challenged. Today, the specter of war in Europe has been awakened, while on the other side of the Mediterranean the specter of barbarism has been resurrected…


Today as our world order lies in shambles we have to try to understand why? What went wrong?...


We still have time to change our ways to avoid a collapse of the existing world order – and to bring about a new multilateral order that is inclusive and empowering to all the smaller and medium states…


We should be making special efforts to give more voice to the developing countries and the small and medium countries.  To ensure the presence of members who empathize with the problems of the developing world, can articulate their viewpoints, and yet can build bridges with the industrialized countries of the world.  Egypt is such a bridge-builder and consensus seeker.  We are committed to the idea of an empowering multilateralism that will engage each member of the international community, large or small, rich or poor, to value their views and seek their involvement…”


The Alamein retreat aims to provide an opportunity to exchange views on the way forward to create an enabling multilateralism to address the challenges of peace, security and development, as well as to allow small and medium States to contribute and benefit from the United Nations system.


Click here to read full text of the speech.



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