"Challenge your political and business leaders"

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Ban Ki-moon with Silja Wöhrle and Yannik Kaiser from the TUM Speakers Series tea

Ban Ki-moon with Silja Wöhrle and Yannik Kaiser from the TUM Speakers Series team. Image: Andreas Heddergott / TUM

Ban Ki-moon at the TUM Speakers Series

"Challenge your political and business leaders"

In his address at the TUM Speakers Series former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called on students to put pressure on governments to collaborate globally. He emphatically warned against nuclear armament and the impact of climate change.

"I am urging you today to challenge your political and business leaders!" Ban Ki-moon told approximately 1,000 students in the main auditorium on Friday evening. "Only activism will make sure that your leaders will follow your voices." He added that the generation that is growing up in the digital age instinctively understand that people all over the world are linked with one another as global citizens, but that several of the most powerful states are attacking the principles of the United Nations.

Ban, Secretary General of the UN from 2007 to 2016 , aimed particular criticism at the US government for its withdrawal from the nuclear agreement with Iran, from the INF disarmament treaty and the Paris agreement on climate change. Ban said that nuclear armament and climate change are currently the greatest dangers to the world, and the multilateral system is the best way to master them.

The TUM Speakers Series has been organized by students for students for 20 years. Recent speakers include Ban’s predecessor Kofi Annan as well as Tony Blair and Bill Gates. The event with Ban Ki-moon was held in cooperation with the Munich Security Conference.

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