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Ivanov at Istanbul summit: It’s time to turn words into actions

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This summit raises the awareness of the countries to pay more attention to those in need of humanitarian aid. We have been witnessing how millions of migrants, both economic migrants and political refugees and those affected by climate changes, have transited our country. Therefore, it is necessary to change the approach to dealing with these challenges, President Gjorge Ivanov said Tuesday in Istanbul where he attended the first World Humanitarian Summit, organized by the United Nations.

He urged leaders to always prevent consequences instead of dealing with them. “Macedonia is a positive example of preventative diplomacy serving as a success story of the UN,” noted the President as cited by his cabinet in a press release.

According to Ivanov, many crises had been inflamed generating a myriad of consequences, including environmental problems and failed peace processes.

“Therefore, it’s time to take action and to change the approach of the UN members,” President Ivanov stated urging the UN ‘to stop being euphoric only during their summits and start taking more action.’

In the past, many pledges have been made, according to the President. “But, Macedonia has a very negative experience from these pledges made at various donor conferences and by different funds, created with the purpose of addressing an issue only to be forgotten very soon.’

The same had happened in Macedonia during the 1999 refugee crisis, he added. “Macedonia didn’t receive a dime from a donor conference. Even now, all those amounts Macedonia is supposedly getting are being donated to humanitarian organizations, not to the state.”

“This has to change, people should not profit from the sufferings of individuals in need of a dignified life,” President Ivanov stressed.

According to him, many people are losing the territory of their countries to climate changes. Others are facing epidemics while the rest are caught in the middle of war conflicts.

“All of this raises the humanitarian awareness of human civilization. Not only countries, but also each and every one of us need to find humanity in themselves in order to help those in need,” said President Ivanov.

On Monday at the World Humanitarian Summit, Ivanov addressed a session on political leadership in preventing and solving conflicts. He also met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and with the premiers of Greece and Slovenia, Alexis Tsipras and Miro Cerar respectively.

The Istanbul summit brought together over 5,000 participants, including 60 heads of state and government, leaders of crisis-hit regions, heads of international organizations, businessmen as well as civil activists.