Please note: Speeches appear in the language in which they were delivered.

President Van Loon,
Rector Patry,
Distinguished Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Ladies and gentlemen,

Merci pour ces très aimables paroles. Je suis profondément ému par l’honneur que me font simultanément deux des grandes universités du Canada.

Je suis heureux d’être ici, dans ce pays qui, depuis la création de l’ONU, compte parmi ses alliés les plus loyaux et les plus actifs.

As we stand in this setting that speaks of Canada’s relations with the world, I am reminded that it was a Canadian, Marshall McLuhan, who coined the words that best describe our world today: we live in a global village.

Ours is a world in which no individual, and no country, exists in isolation.All of us live simultaneously in our own communities and in the world at large.

We are consumers in the same global economy.We are all influenced by a tide of political, social, environmental and technological change that knows few frontiers.We are connected, and all of us are affected by the challenges of our age.

We need to address those challenges together. We need to work together to achieve freedom from fear, freedom from want, and freedom from degradation of our planet’s resources.

I believe Canadians -- true to the spirit of McLuhan -- have understood this better than most. And that is why your country is such an invaluable ally of the United Nations.

Equally, institutions of learning are of tremendous importance to our Organization. They play a crucial role in instilling a global outlook in young people. They explore new ideas that can advance and inspire the progress of humankind -- and the work of the United Nations. They are catalysts for change, and custodians of the future.

I know that Carleton University and the University of Ottawa, through their broad curriculum and your partnerships with other universities around the world, will have prepared their students well for the challenges ahead.

Je vous remercie encore pour l’honneur que vous me faites et pour votre volonté de rendre notre village planétaire meilleur, plus sain et plus paisible.

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