UN ob­serves In­ter­na­tional Day of Hap­pi­ness

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The Per­ma­nent Mis­sion of the Re­pub­lic of Palau, Per­ma­nent Mis­sion of São Tomé and Príncipe and the Per­ma­nent Mis­sion of So­cial­ist Re­pub­lic of Viet Nam to the United Na­tions or­ga­nized a spe­cial event en­ti­tled “Hap­pi­ness and Well-be­ing in the UN 2030 Agenda: Achiev­ing a New Vision of Sus­tain­able Devel­op­ment for the Peo­ple and the Planet” on 20 March 2016 at the United Na­tions in New York to cel­e­brate the In­ter­na­tional Day of Hap­pi­ness. The event was a trib­ute to Bhutan for its ini­tia­tive in spear­head­ing the United Na­tions res­o­lu­tion A/RES/65/309 en­ti­tled “Hap­pi­ness: to­wards a holis­tic ap­proach to devel­op­ment” that was adopted on 19 July 2011.

The day­long event was or­ga­nized in col­lab­o­ra­tion with var­i­ous civil so­ci­ety or­ga­ni­za­tions. Par­tic­i­pants in­cluded the diplo­matic com­mu­nity at-large, sci­en­tific ex­perts, per­son­al­i­ties, celebri­ties and artists and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of youth. The pro­gram in­cluded a spe­cial per­for­mance by UNICEF Good­will Am­bas­sador Ani Choy­ing Drolma and a spe­cial ad­dress by Mr. Mo­gens Lykketoft, Pres­i­dent of the UN General Assem­bly. Per­ma­nent Rep­re­sen­ta­tives of sev­eral Mis­sions to the United Na­tions as well as rep­re­sen­ta­tives from civil so­ci­ety or­ga­ni­za­tions and the academia made state­ments on the is­sue of hap­pi­ness, in which they also paid trib­ute to Bhutan for its pi­o­neer­ing role in pro­mot­ing hap­pi­ness in the global devel­op­ment agenda. The pro­gram also in­cluded cul­tural per­for­mances by var­i­ous artists and ac­tiv­i­ties such as med­i­ta­tive tech­niques aimed to the visu­al­iza­tion of in­creas­ing the hap­pi­ness in the world.

The Am­bas­sador Kun­zang C. Nam­gyel, Per­ma­nent Rep­re­sen­ta­tive of Bhutan to the United Na­tions made a state­ment to ac­knowl­edge the trib­ute to Bhutan. In her state­ment, Am­bas­sador con­veyed the warm greet­ings of His Majesty the King. She said that un­der the wise and able lead­er­ship of the Monar­chs, Bhutan had en­deav­ored to ful­fill the vision and goals of the Charter of the United Na­tions. In this con­text, she men­tioned Bhutan, guided by its devel­op­ment phi­los­o­phy of Gross Na­tional Hap­pi­ness (GNH), had en­sured in­clu­sive devel­op­ment and achieved most of the targets of the MDGs; suc­cess­fully es­tab­lished a vi­brant democ­racy; and re­mained com­mit­ted to safe­guard­ing the world’s en­vi­ron­men­tal her­itage and thereby com­bat­ting cli­mate change. She high­lighted that the Agenda 2030 pro­vided a his­toric op­por­tu­nity to en­sure a hap­pier world and in this re­gard called for the need to awaken the spirit of global sol­i­dar­ity and shared val­ues for the sake of the planet and for the sake of all hu­man­ity.

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