I was profoundly moved to be the first United Nations Secretary-General to attend the Peace Memorial Ceremony in Hiroshima. I also visited Nagasaki. Sadly, we know the terrible humanitarian consequences from the use of even one weapon. As long as such weapons exist, so, too, will the risks of use and proliferation.
Climate change, in some regions, has aggravated conflict over scarce land, and could well trigger large-scale migration in the decades ahead. And rising sea levels put at risk the very survival of all small island states. These and other implications for peace and security have implications for the United Nations itself.
Terrorism is a significant threat to peace and security, prosperity and people.
I have been, and will remain, outspoken in my insistence that Israel has a right to live in peace and security.
Countries with higher levels of gender equality have higher economic growth. Companies with more women on their boards have higher returns. Peace agreements that include women are more successful. Parliaments with more women take up a wider range of issues - including health, education, anti-discrimination, and child support.
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.
My U.N. five-point plan focuses on preventing proliferation, strengthening the legal regime, and ensuring nuclear safety and security - an effort that was given good momentum by the Nuclear Security Summit held in Seoul earlier this year. The world is over-armed, and peace is underfunded.
Nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation are not utopian ideals. They are critical to global peace and security.
Midori has been a steadfast supporter of the United Nations, as a Messenger of Peace and more recently by encouraging our efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.
Not many countries establish a prize for peace. The Seoul Peace Prize has its roots in the 1988 Summer Olympics when this country opened its doors to people and athletes from more than 160 countries. Korea did so in part because it believes in the power of sports for peace and development.