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Monday, 3 December 2018

Address preceding the concert on the occasion of the Centenary of Regaining Independence and the Inauguration of COP24


Your Excellency, Mr Secretary-General,

Your Royal Highness,

Your Excellencies, Honourable Presidents,

Your Excellencies, Honourable Prime Ministers,

All Distinguished Guests,

Your Eminence,

Ladies and Gentlemen! 


I would like to express my joy and gratitude for your pr4esence in this Hall, thank you for gathering here on the one hand, at the opening of the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP24, but also - and I would like to stress this very strongly - in connection with the centenary of the regaining of independence by my country, the Republic of Poland. 


See also: President: Poland, as UN member, proud contributor to global security This is no coincidence whatsoever that it is precisely in this year, in 2018, that this great world event, the COP24 conference, takes place in Poland. At COP22 in Marrakech, back in 2016 we, as Poland, sought to be the host of COP24 this year, also in connection with the centenary of Poland's regaining independence. At the occasion afforded by this grand meeting we wanted to share with you our joy of the century of regaining independence. 


Today's concert - also in its contents - is a reference to the two aforementioned grand periods in the history of my country. We will hear music by Paderewski, but also by Wojciech Kilar. We will hear the music of an exquisite Polish pianist and composer, as well as an outstanding diplomat, to whom, among others, we are indebted for the restoration of independence in 1918, recognising his talent, his struggle for a free Poland; we consider him to be one of the six fathers of our independence. But we will also hear pieces by the contemporary composer: Wojciech Kilar, who died only five years ago. There will be historical music, but there will also be contemporary music. 


This is precisely the way we would look at those one hundred years of our history, at that Poland, which was reborn in 1918, and at today's Poland, which has been reborn, has gained full sovereignty and independence in the wake of developments of 1989. That Poland was arising from the ruins of World War I, the one today is still struggling to make up for the delays which communism inflicted on it. That Poland could only develop for 21 years, until 1939, i.e. until the beginning of World War II, the present-day Poland is almost 30 years old. 

See also: Statement by the President at the official opening of the Climate Summit and the COP24 Leaders' Summit Statement by the President of the Republic of Poland at the session devoted to the "Just Transition" declaration


I would like to strongly emphasize that we, the Poles, welcoming you and rejoicing in your presence, are also very proud to be able to host the COP Conference on Climate Change in Poland for the third time, but also that this is happening at a time when we are a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.  


We are very proud that as a member of the world's largest organisation, the United Nations, we can take care of the world security in many aspects: the security of everyday life, and therefore also in the military aspect, but also in terms of secure future and security of future generations to come, which is the essence of works of COP conference. 


See also: President and UN Secretary General open COP24 climate summit in Katowice I firmly believe that this conference, which takes place in Katowice, a venue of symbolic nature for us, Poles, in terms of climate protection, in the city which develops at such a good pace, will produce excellent results expected by all of us. Above all, that it will contribute to global climate protection. 


And this is something I wish to all of you, this is something I wish for myself, for my compatriots and my Home Country, also in the context of the centenary of its regaining independence. I wish you a beautiful concert, great experiences and, above all, a successful COP24 summit in Katowice. 


Thank you. 



President Andrzej Duda

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