Moral and political leadership in a time of uncertainty

Writing in the Financial Times as the World Economic Forum 2017 opens in Davos, Mary Robinson says that millions of people feel left behind by the actions of governments and corporations. She rejects cynical populists who offer scapegoats instead of real solutions, and calls on responsible politicians, civil society and business leaders to reassert our basic, common values of dignity for all.

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The Elders’ statement on the death of former Iranian President Rafsanjani

The Elders express their condolences on the death of President Rafsanjani, one of Iran's most influential leaders and a strong voice for reform.

“Iran has lost one of its most influential leaders and a strong voice for reform and for the improvement of regional relations." –Kofi Annan

Kofi Annan in discussions with former President Rafsanjani on an Elders trip to Iran in January 2014. (Credit: Morteza Nikoubazl | The Elders)

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2017: a year for hard questions and honest answers

Looking ahead to the hard choices facing the world in 2017, our Chair Kofi Annan calls on leaders to be honest with their people and pledges that The Elders will continue to speak truth to power, as the organisation marks its tenth anniversary. Published in Newsweek.

"People deserve honest explanations and answers from their leaders, not obfuscations given in bad faith."

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Another day, another atrocity

In a valedictory piece after six years at The Elders, Andrew Whitley laments the loss of innocent civilian life in ongoing atrocities from Nigeria to Turkey, Egypt to Syria, and reflects on the failure of internationally-binding rules-based systems.

"It is clear that the vestiges of the “rules of warfare” agreed during the last century have almost completely gone, and with them a defining guide to what is right and wrong."

Salaheddin, Aleppo in 2012

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Elders’ Visit to UNGA High-Level Week, New York, 17-22 September 2016

Four Elders visited New York in September 2016 to attend events in and around the UN General Assembly, including on refugees and migration, Universal Health Coverage and UN reform.

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Kofi Annan discusses UHC with the President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo

Chair of The Elders Kofi Annan holds talks with Indonesian President Joko Widowi ahead of the Bali Democracy Forum, with discussion focusing on key topics including Universal Health Coverage.


Kofi Annan discusses UHC with the President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo (Credit: Kofi Annan Foundation)

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We need to safeguard civic space

Danny Sriskandarajah, Secretary-General of CIVICUS, marks Human Rights Day by reflecting on civil society's successes and challenges, noting the declining space for citizens to organise and mobilise and calling for the need to construct a progressive narrative around freedom of movement and human rights.

"Even as people are building walls and closing borders, we need to construct a progressive narrative around freedom of movement and human rights."

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Acting together to secure a sustainable future

In a world of rising intolerance, Mary Robinson draws courage from leaders working to tackle the global challenge of climate change.

"There are many leaders, organisations and ordinary citizens who are still determined to act together to secure a sustainable future for our people and planet."

Mary Robinson

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The Elders felicitan al Presidente de Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos por el premio Liderazgo de las Américas  

Una carta abierta por parte de nuestro Presidente Kofi Annan al Presidente de Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos, en la que se elogia su liderazgo en negociar dos acuerdos de paz con los rebeldes de las FARC para poner fin al conflicto más prolongado de Colombia.

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The Elders congratulate Colombia’s President Santos on Leadership for The Americas award

An open letter from our Chair Kofi Annan to Colombia’s President Santos, praising his leadership in brokering two peace agreements with the FARC rebels to end Colombia’s long-running conflict.

Available in Español

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