UNITED NATIONS, Dec 31 (TNS): For the first time, the United Nations issued Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ New Year message in Urdu, the national language of Pakistan, among other non-UN languages, in an effort to reach the widest possible audiences.
Hitherto the UN chief’s new year message was released only in the six official UN languages — English, French, Chinese, Spanish, Russian and Arabic.
Besides Urdu, a widely spoken language, the UN this year also picked Portuguese, Hindi and Kiswahili, a major African language, for the annual message.
In this regard, it is learnt that officials of the United Nations and the Pakistan Mission to the UN were in contact.
In his New Year message, released earlier, the UN secretary-general had called for 2021 to be a “year of healing”, while stressing the need for unity and solidarity when addressing the coronavirus pandemic and climate change crisis.
“Both climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic are crises that can only be addressed by everyone together – as part of a transition to an inclusive and sustainable future,” Guterres had said.