Statement by Foreign Minister Maas prior to his departure for New York and Canada

12.08.2019 - Press release

Foreign Minister Heiko Maas issued the following statement today (12 August) prior to his departure for New York and Canada:

If we do not take concerted and global action on the difficult tasks of the coming years and decades, we will all lose out in the end. The weakest will be the first to suffer – but ultimately the strong will also lose out. We will not survive without a firm global order.

I am leaving today for New York and Canada with the aim of making progress, firstly on issues that primarily affect the most vulnerable. I will attend a Security Council meeting chaired by my Polish counterpart on protecting the civilian population in conflicts. Even 70 years after the Geneva Conventions were adopted, protected persons suffer atrocities and tyranny every day. The international community must take action so that the breaking of taboos does not become a permanent state of affairs.

Climate change also entails significant potential for conflict. In order to reduce this potential, we need a functioning dialogue and common rules – and we need them now, before new conflicts break out. Climate change is proceeding particularly quickly in the Arctic and radical changes in the coming decades can already be sensed there.

Global problems can no longer be solved by any one country alone. That is why we – along with Canada, France and other countries – have suggested an alliance of all those who are committed to multilateralism and want to address the problems together and pragmatically. I want to discuss with Chrystia Freeland how we will expand this network and put it into practice.


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