PHOTO STORY: Hammer comes down on first virtual UN General Debate

Asha Bajaj
5 min readOct 1, 2020

#UN; #UNGeneralAssembly75thSession; #VirtualGeneralDebate; #PhotoStory; #Covid19GlobalLockdown

UN, Sep 30 (Canadian-Media): The first-ever virtual annual high-level debate of world leaders ended on Tuesday at the United Nations, after the event was moved online because of the COVID-19 global lockdown, UN reports said.

Volkan Bozkir, President of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly, chairs the General Debate of the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly.

Volkan Bozkir. Image credit: UN/Photo: Rick Bajomas

Delegates in the General Assembly hall sat at a safe social distance to prevent the potential spread of the virus and listened to mostly pre-recorded speeches provided by all UN Member States.

​ Image credit: UN Photo/Evan Schneider

Some leaders, like the Greek Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, addressed the United Nations whilst promoting their country’s cultural, diplomatic, and political heritage.

Image: Kyriakos Mitsotakis. Image credit: UN News/Daniel Dickinson

While others, like the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, decided on perhaps a more conventional approach using well-trusted diplomatic symbols as a backdrop…in the UK’s case, the Union Jack and the United Nations flags.

Image: Boris Johnson. Image credit: UN Photo/Evan Schneider

​The General Debate lasts for six long days with speeches often continuing deep into the evening, although this year most of the pre-recorded speeches submitted by the UN’s 193 member countries kept to the 15-minute maximum length. Here, the Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed (right) and Vice-President of the General Assembly Adela Raz preside over the opening day of the debate.

Image: ​Adela Raz (left) and Amina Mohammed (right). Image credit: UN Photo/ Manuel Elias



Asha Bajaj

I write on national and international Health, Politics, Business, Education, Environment, Biodiversity, Science, First Nations, Humanitarian, gender, women