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September 2022

Ban Ki-moon on his recent visit to Ukraine, the need for international solidarity and the global threat of nuclear weapons.


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Newsletter Archive


February 2022: Ban Ki-moon

Multilateral cooperation is needed to tackle shared global challenges

January 2022: Mary Robinson

Remembering Arch; COP27, welcoming small steps on nuclear weapons

December 2021: Ban Ki-moon

Ethical leadership and what is needed to combat injustices

November 2021: Ricardo Lagos

Our planet is at stake at COP26

October 2021: Zeid Raad Al Hussein

The climate crisis and COVID-19 defined this year’s UN General Assembly.

September 2021: The Elders

Multilateralism is key to tackling both global conflicts and the climate crisis.

August 2021: Hina Jilani

Nurturing our democracies and civil society in a post-pandemic world.

July 2021: Graça Machel

Mandela's legacy and the persistent injustices facing women and girls.

June 2021: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

​​​How to prevent future pandemics and subsequent global crises.

May 2021: Ernesto Zedillo

The COVID-19 crisis offers an opportunity to reform the multilateral system.

April 2021: Gro Harlem Brundtland

How to mitigate the impact of future health emergencies.

March 2021: Lakhdar Brahimi

The role of international actors in peace-building should be guided by humility.

February 2021: Juan Manuel Santos

Collective efforts are needed to combat our shared challenges.

January 2021: Mary Robinson

2021 must be a year of enlightened and empathetic action.



December 2020: Hina Jilani

We must break the cycle of gender-based discrimination and inequality.

November 2020: The Elders

On the eve of the US election, The Elders recall Mandela’s legacy.

October 2020: Ricardo Lagos

Ricardo Lagos on why principled global leadership and cooperation is more important than ever.

September 2020: Hina Jilani

Hina Jilani on putting justice at the heart of the COVID-19 response.

August 2020: Juan Manuel Santos

Juan Manuel Santos on the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

July 2020: Mary Robinson

Mary Robinson on how multilateralism is the world’s insurance policy against existential threats.

June 2020: Zeid Raad al Hussein

Zeid Raad al Hussein about why we cannot afford to turn inwards as our own countries begin to recover from the coronavirus.

May 2020: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf calls for a collective, rights-based response to COVID-19 and reflects on the lessons from the Ebola epidemic.

April 2020: Gro Harlem Brundtland

Gro Harlem Brundtland on how COVID-19 shines a light on common humanity and shared vulnerabilities. 

March 2020: Lakhdar Brahimi

Lakhdar Brahimi reflects on challenges of global security and express concern over the development of the Irsael-Palestine conflict.

February 2020: Ban Ki-moon

Ban Ki-moon on the two major threats to humanity: nuclear profileration and the climate crisis. 

January 2020: Mary Robinson

Mary Robinson on why 2020 must be a year of multilateral action on nuclear arms, climate and gender.



December 2019: The Elders

The Elders on why the multilateral system needs urgent defence against unprecedented attack.

November 2019: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf on the importance of intergenerational dialogue and why it is crucial for inclusive solutions to global challenges.

October 2019: Gro Harlem Brundtland

Gro Harlem Brundtland calls for actions, not words, to ensure no one is left behind.

September 2019: Zeid Raad al Hussein

Zeid Raad al Hussein: "An isolationist response to global challenges can never deliver sustainable responses."

August 2019: Juan Manuel Santos

Juan Manuel Santos on access to justice and the Sustainable Development Goals.

July 2019: Mary Robinson

Mary Robinson on the UNSC, UK arms sales to Saudi Arabia and talks in the Vatican.

June 2019: David Nussbaum

David Nussbaum, CEO of The Elders, on the youth's commitment to sustainable development.

May 2019: Graça Machel

Graça Machel shares a message on climate justice.

April 2019: Ban Ki-moon

Ban Ki-moon reflects on the Elders' discussions with President Ki Jinping.

March 2019: Ernesto Zedillo

Ernesto Zedillo: "As long as nuclear weapons remain, they are bound one day to be used."

February 2019: Hina Jilani

Hina Jilani announces a new Elders' programme: Access to Justice.

January 2019: Mary Robinson

Mary Robinson shares a New Year Message.



December 2018: Martti Ahtisaari

Martti Ahtisaari reflects on stepping down as an Elder after 10 years.

November 2018: Mary Robinson

Mary Robinson on the legacies of her predecessors Archbishop Tutu and Kofi Annan as she takes over as Chair of the Elders.

October 2018: Ricardo Lagos

Ricardo Lagos reflects on the new IPCC report and the challenges posed by the climate crisis. 

September 2018: Gro Harlem Brundtland

Gro Harlem Brundtland rembers the late Kofi Annan, Chair of the Elder. 

August 2018: Mary Robinson
Mary Robinson reflects on her recent visits to South Africa for Mandela's centenary and to Zimbabwe as the country decides its future. 

July 2018: Graça Machel
Graça Machel reflects on a year of championing the freedoms Nelson Mandela dedicated his life to. She invites you to join with The Elders in continuing Mandela's long walk to freedom.

June 2018: Ban Ki-moon
Ban Ki-moon urges politicians to have the courage to take difficult decisions rather than pandering to xenophobic or populist pressures.

May 2018: Walk Together to #FightInequality
We reflect on the past month's #WalkTogether events in Oxford and London and the increasing momentum to tackle economic inequality and achieve a more equitable world.

April 2018: David Nussbaum
Our CEO highlights a recent guest blog by Louise Arbour, the UN Special Representative for International Migration, on the need for need for sustained political leadership on migration.

March 2018: Hina Jilani
Ahead of International Women's Day 2018, Hina Jilani reflects on the impressive achievements of global women’s protest movements over the past year and the barriers that remain to overcome.

February 2018: Mary Robinson
Mary Robinson calls on the international community to agree new ways of managing migration that respects and protects human dignity.

January 2018: Kofi Annan
In his New Year message, Kofi Annan reflects on the life of Nelson Mandela in his call for leaders to act with compassion and empathy in 2018.



December 2017: Lakhdar Brahimi
Reflecting on his recent visit to a refugee centre on the Italian island of Sicily and a meeting with Pope Francis, Lakhdar Brahimi highlights the need for solidarity with those who are forced to live a perilous existence on the front lines of Europe’s borders and across the world.

November 2017: Ban Ki-moon 
Following his first Elders' board meeting and an intergenerational dialogue with future young leaders, Ban Ki-moon reflects on the need to ensure a more peaceful world to allow younger generations to meet their potential to the fullest extent.

October 2017: Ernesto Zedillo 
Pointing to the power of solidarity and empathy, Ernesto Zedillo urges people to take action and demand that leaders end the suffering of victims of natural disasters, conflicts and violence across the world.

September 2017: Gro Harlem Brundtland 
Reflecting on the legacy of German post-war leader Willy Brandt, Gro Harlem Brundtland rejects recent isolationist trends and celebrates collective efforts towards achieving a peaceful, just and sustainable world.

August 2017: Ricardo Lagos
Ricardo Lagos reflects on the launch of the Walk Together campaign and calls for sustained commitment to counter the threats that face global freedoms today.

July 2017: Graça Machel
Graça Machel reflects on The Elders' first ten years, ahead of the launch of the Walk Together campaign to continue Mandela's long walk to freedom.

June 2017: Martti Ahtisaari
Following an Elders board meeting, Martti Ahtisaari reflects on the importance of maintaining multilateralism at the heart of international relations in order to overcome today's greatest challenges.

May 2017: Mary Robinson
Acknowledging cynicism within politics and the media, Mary Robinson calls for evidence-based science to determine the global policy agenda as she expresses solidarity with climate scientists and those on the frontlines of climate change.

April 2017: David Nussbaum
Reflecting on a recent staff trip to Israel-Palestine, our CEO remains inspired by the brave groups from both communities who continue to be voices of peace and justice.

March 2017: Ernesto Zedillo
In a world of uncertainty and insecurity, Ernesto Zedillo highlights the importance of dialogue in order to reach common ground.

February 2017: Lakhdar Brahimi
Whilst acknowledging the need to address security, Lakhdar Brahimi calls on leaders to respond to refugees and migration with care and responsibility.

January 2017: Kofi Annan
In his New Year message, Kofi Annan reflects on The Elders' work in 2016 and calls on leaders to be honest with their people as the world faces hard choices in 2017.



December 2016: Andrew Whitley
In a valedictory piece after six years at The Elders, Andrew Whitley laments the loss of innocent civilian life in ongoing atrocities around the world, and reflects on the failure of internationally-binding rules-based systems.

November 2016: Mary Robinson
Rejecting rising intolerance and isolationism, Mary Robinson points to from leaders working together to tackle global challenges.

October 2016: David Nussbaum
Reflecting on his first board meeting as CEO, David Nussbaum recalls the Elders undimmed sense of determination as "prisoners of hope" and pays tribute to Ela Bhatt as she steps down.

September 2016: Andrew Whitley
Andrew Whitley reflects on a busy month during which The Elders launched a new report in Germany on refugees and mass migration, and held several meetings in and around the UN General Assembly in New York.

August 2016: Kofi Annan
Kofi Annan reflects on the shocking images of children who have suffered in the Syrian conflict and asks whether the world has done enough, both in protecting civilians within Syria and those who have fled.

July 2016: Ricardo Lagos
Ricardo Lagos on joining The Elders, Colombia's path to peace and the tensions between conflict resolution and upholding human rights.

June 2016: Tom Brookes
Programme Officer Tom Brookes considers progress to date and the challenges ahead, as we enter the final stretch in the selection process for the next Secretary-General of the United Nations.

May 2016: Elders' Team
Highlights from the launch of our new initiative to campaign for Universal Health Coverage.

April 2016: Jenny Yates
Programme Director Jenny Yates reflects on the signing of the Paris Agreement on climate change by 175 countries and considers the road ahead for climate action.

March 2016: Lesley-Anne Knight
As CEO Lesley-Anne Knight bids farewell to The Elders, read her thoughts on the challenges that lie ahead.

February 2016: Lakhdar Brahimi
Lakhdar Brahimi says it's time to put the needs of the Syrian people first.

January 2016: Kofi Annan
Kofi Annan welcomes you to the New Year, looking back on the events of 2015 and forward to the possibilities in 2016.

December 2015: Mary Robinson
Mary Robinson writing after the successful conclusion of the COP21 climate summit in Paris.

November 2015: Hina Jilani
After returning from The Elders board meeting, Hina Jilani asks, "Who has the courage to protect refugees?"

September 2015: Martti Ahtisaari
What does Fairness mean to you? Martti Ahtisaari describes how fairness, equality and justice are central to the Elders’ belief in ethical leadership.

August 2015: Elders' Team
Why the Iran nuclear deal is too important to fail – and views from both sides of the Israel and Palestine conflict.

June 2015: Mary Robinson
Mary Robinson on the critical role 2015 has to play for future generations.

May 2015: Jimmy Carter
After a visit to the region, Jimmy Carter argues why a paradigm shift is needed in Israel and Palestine.

March 2015: Lakhdar Brahimi
Lakhdar Brahimi on the challenges facing the Syrian people and the need to make refugee policies more humane in the wake of the conflict.

February 2015: Gro Harlem Brundtland
From making the Security Council more representative, to conducting an equitable search for the next Secretary-General, Gro Harlem Brundtland outlines The Elders' proposals for a stronger UN.

January 2015: Kofi Annan's New Year message
Kofi Annan reflects on the events of the past 12 months and calls for forward-thinking, ethical leadership in 2015.

October 2014: Mary Robinson
Mary Robinson on joining the largest climate protest in history with Gro Harlem Brundtland and building the political momentum for climate action.

September 2014: Gro Harlem Brundtland
Gro Harlem Brundtland gives her view of our public debate on peace and ethical leadership with fellow Elders Desmond Tutu and Hina Jilani, and looks ahead to the UN Climate Summit.

June 2014: Ela Bhatt
Ela Bhatt on speaking truth to power, amplifying the voices of civil society, and the impact of climate change.

May 2014: Hina Jilani
Hina Jilani on joining The Elders, viewing climate change through a human rights lens, and the importance of listening to young people.

April 2014: Martti Ahtisaari
Martti Ahtisaari reports back from The Elders' visit to Myanmar, where a more inclusive approach will be key to helping the country's diverse communities overcome decades of mistrust.

March 2014: Mary Robinson
Mary Robinson on The Elders' call for a carbon-neutral future; the role of men in promoting gender equality; and our first ever Twitter Q&A.

February 2014: Ernesto Zedillo
Ernesto Zedillo on becoming an Elder and the recent visit to support dialogue and trust in Iran.

January 2014: Kofi Annan’s New Year message
Highlights from The Elders’ work in 2013 and Kofi Annan’s reflection on the passing of Nelson Mandela and the humanitarian crisis in Syria

“What Nelson Mandela taught us”: Kofi Annan
Returning from Nelson Mandela's memorial service in South Africa, Kofi Annan sends a special message to The Elders' supporters.

October 2013: Graça Machel
In Cape Town with her fellow Elders, Graça Machel reflects on the meaning of ethical leadership.

September 2013: Gro Harlem Brundtland
Returning from The Elders' first delegation to Myanmar, Gro Harlem Brundtland discusses the rapid reforms taking place and the importance of listening to ethical, inclusive leadership.

July 2013: Jimmy Carter
Jimmy Carter on political courage, Kerry's latest efforts to revive the Middle East peace process, a recent Elders visit to Washington DC and London, and the appointment of two new Elders.

June 2013: Martti Ahtisaari
Martti Ahtisaari on conflict in Syria, peace-building in Northern Ireland, his childhood experience as a refugee, and why every conflict can be resolved.

May 2013: Kofi Annan
After Desmond Tutu steps down as Chair of The Elders, his successor Kofi Annan pays tribute to his leadership and discusses the recent Elders meeting in Dublin.

April 2013: Lesley-Anne Knight
Lesley-Anne Knight describes her first few months as CEO of The Elders, looks forward to the group's upcoming meeting, and poses the question: “Why does the world need the Elders?”

March 2013: Gro Harlem Brundtland
Gro Harlem Brundtland on the struggle for gender equality – and why we cannot take our previous achievements for granted.

February 2013: Ela Bhatt
Ahead of International Women’s Day 2013, Ela Bhatt celebrates women peace-builders around the world.

January 2013: Desmond Tutu's New Year message
Desmond Tutu reviews The Elders’ work in 2012, from supporting peace in Sudan and South Sudan to debating with young activists in Rio de Janeiro and Egypt.

December 2012: Martti Ahtisaari
Martti Ahtisaari on Egypt’s constitutional referendum, the humanitarian crisis caused by the Syrian conflict, and recent positive developments towards Middle East peace.

November 2012: Mary Robinson
Mary Robinson praises the first ever global Day of the Girl and the prominence it gave the issue of child marriage. Returning from an Elders trip to Israel, the West Bank and Cairo, she writes of the imperilled two-state solution and Egypt’s democratic transition.

October 2012: Graça Machel
Graça Machel reflects on our progress towards the Millennium Development Goals and underlines the importance of the upcoming inaugural Day of the Girl to bring much-needed focus to adolescent girls.

July 2012: Fernando Henrique Cardoso
Fernando Henrique Cardoso informs Elders supporters of the Elders+Youngers' activities in Rio, The Elders' trip to London in honour of its fifth anniversary, and the delegation to South Sudan to encourage peace talks.

June 2012: Lakhdar Brahimi
Lakhdar Brahimi writes about his recent trip to Sudan with fellow Elder Jimmy Carter where they met President Omar al-Bashir, and the role of youth in sustainable development.

May 2012: Desmond Tutu
Desmond Tutu introduces the Elders+Youngers project, involving him, fellow Elders Mary Robinson, Gro Harlem Brundtland and Fernando Henrique Cardoso and four young activists in an intergenerational dialogue.

April 2012: Jimmy Carter
Jimmy Carter announces Aung San Suu Kyi's appointment to Myanmar parliament and her consequent withdrawal from The Elders.

March 2012: Gro Harlem Brundtland
Gro Harlem Brundtland recounts The Elders' trip to India, where she and fellow Elders, Desmond Tutu, Ela Bhatt and Mary Robinson met local grassroots organisations to learn about the work being done to prevent child marriage.

January 2012: Desmond Tutu's New Year message
Desmond Tutu gives a recap, on behalf of The Elders, of their work in 2011 and announces the Global Village section of the website.

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