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AMBASSADOR FOR PEACE
YUKO GULDA
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ALISSA JACHS

First of all, I would like to thank the UN for organising this event and for giving me the opportunity to be an ambassador for the youth today.

Your Excellencies,
ladies and gentlemen,

I am 18 years old. I graduated from high school about a year ago and am now able to study international business and economics at a renowned university here in Vienna. My parents both have jobs, I have a stable social background, I have friends and a family who always support me. What should I worry about? My future and my whole life are more or less secured.

But how could I not be worried, when I know that my whole future, something that I am so looking forward to, could be destroyed within the next 30 seconds, by an atomic bomb. How could I not be worried, when I know that there are over 15000 nuclear weapons on this planet, each of them stronger than little boy or fat man. And I am not talking about politically instable states. I am talking about the US, the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands. Countries that I love to visit and that I appreciate as places to live. But still, those countries agree to possess or host weapons of mass destruction that could destroy all of our lives within an instant.

But I am not here today to tell you how sad and worried young people like me are. I am here to tell you that we are motivated to take action in the nuclear disarmament negotiations, we are ready to participate, to speak up and to be part of a growing movement. Last year, the amplify youth pledge for nuclear abolition was set up by us young people, the generation of change. This pledge states that we see the potential for security not to be based on fear and more militarism, but on diplomacy, cooperation and trust. It is our right to seek for security and peace and this is exactly what we do, by calling for a ban of nuclear weapons.

 
Alissa Jachs Atomic Bomb Awareness Day 2015

We are active and we will not be content with another endorsed statement saying »never again« which is then forgotten way too fast.
I therefore call on you, your Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, to let us young people participate in the nuclear disarmament negotiations. To let us play an active role in the development of ideas.

At last month’s Women Higher Education for Peace Forum in Vienna, Ms. Chantal de Jonge Oudraat said that we all live in bubbles. So I ask for a connection of these bubbles. I ask you to let the youth participate and to let us be part and create a world that we can enjoy and look forward to and feel safe in. Because what counts at the end of the day is not who is the strongest, but who is the happiest.

Thank you.