77th Session United Nations General Assembly

September 18, 2022

The UN General Assembly (UNGA) is the main policy-making organ of the United Nations.

The UN General Assembly is an opportunity for the world to come together to address the most pressing global challenges facing us today.

At the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 77), the United States will reinforce the President’s commitment to multilateral action by engaging actively across the full spectrum of UNGA events and activities.

UNGA 77 opens September 13, 2022, with High-Level Week taking place September 19-23 in New York.

Policy Priorities

The United States believes that the United Nations provides a vital platform that can help address some of the most pressing and shared challenges that affect all of us, from global food security to global health crises.

We are committed to continuing to work with and through the United Nations system to find solutions to these challenges.

The United States also recognizes that, in this moment of heightened geopolitical tensions, we all have a role to play in helping shape a future United Nations that can deliver on its mandate and remain a central and effective problem-solving institution.

With that in mind, the United States is focused on three key policy priorities for the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly: Combating Food Insecurity, Advancing Global Health and Global Health Security, and Upholding the UN Charter and Shaping the UN’s Future.

Combating Food Insecurity

Food security is having enough safe and nutritious food to eat.

Food insecurity can destabilize societies, increase hunger and malnutrition, drive migration and conflict, and cause severe economic dislocation. The number of people affected by food insecurity continues to rise, with 2022 expected to be the most food insecure year on record globally.

Higher energy costs, climate change, COVID-19, and global conflicts are fueling the food crisis.

Russia’s unjustified invasion of Ukraine has made an already bad situation worse — preventing the most vulnerable and the most at-risk from having access to the food they so desperately need. 

The World Bank estimates that the Russian government’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine may drive 40 million additional people worldwide into extreme poverty and food insecurity this year. To learn more, read Food Insecurity Made Worse by Putin’s War, Not Sanctions.

Consistent with the humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality, and independence, the United States is committed to working with the international community and the United Nations to address the drivers of food insecurity, including climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic, and armed conflict.

Advancing Global Health and Global Health Security

The world is still struggling to end the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as other threats to global health.

The United States is exercising diplomatic leadership to mobilize an international response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its secondary impacts while strengthening global biosecurity infrastructure to address both the current crisis and future health-related threats.

As we have seen, if people become sick from an infectious disease, jobs can be lost and entire communities suffer.

Advancing global health security and disease outbreak preparedness is vital not only to protect health and safety, but also to ensure economic prosperity and defend national security interests.

We are committed to strengthening global health security so that the world may build back better in order to prevent, detect, and respond to the next infectious disease outbreak.

Upholding the UN Charter and Shaping the UN’s Future

The United States is committed to the UN’s. founding principles of protecting human rights and dignity.

When the Charter of the United Nations was signed on June 26, 1945, it set the stage for a post-World War II era dedicated to the resolution of international disputes by peaceful means.

The charter proclaimed the U.N.’s commitment to maintaining peace and international security and supporting human rights.

Today, the UN includes almost every country in the world, with 193 members.

We must reaffirm the centrality of the UN Charter in international affairs, as part of a broader vision for the future of the United Nations and the international system.

The Secretary-General’s “Our Common Agenda” report provides UN Member States with a starting point for that discussion, which he has urged be taken up by world leaders at the “Summit of the Future.”  We welcome that the Secretary-General has taken this initiative.

We look forward to consulting with other Member States — especially across traditional regional divides — to better understand how they see the road ahead, and to share and seek reactions to ideas of our own.

Consistent with the principles enshrined in the UN Charter, we must recommit to hold Russia accountable for launching an illegal war against Ukraine and to condemn its ongoing efforts to erase Ukrainian identity, including Russian filtration operations and attempts to illegally annex parts of Ukrainian territory.

We must use this occasion to once more reaffirm our support for Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and independence — as protected under the UN Charter — as we concurrently seek to address this war’s adverse consequences and prepare the ground for an eventual diplomatic process to end it.