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United Nations declares May 20 World Bee Day

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The United Nations (UN) declares May 20 World Bee – initiative of the Slovenian Beekeepers’ Association

Last 20 December, the United Nations General Assembly adopted by consensus a resolution declaring 20 May as World Bee Day, a statement released by the Slovenian Embassy în Bucharest informs. Every year on this day, the attention of the global public will be drawn to the importance of preserving bees and other pollinators. People will be reminded of the importance of bees for the entire humanity and invited to take concrete action to preserve and protect them. The resolution was co-sponsored by 115 UN Member States, including the USA, Canada, China, the Russian Federation, India, Brazil, Argentina, Australia and all the European Union Member States.

Dejan Zidan – head of the World Bee Day project and Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Slovenia, the country that proposed the proclamation of World Bee Day to the UN in response to an initiative of the Slovenian Beekeepers’ Association – expressed his satisfaction at the outcome: “After three years of efforts both in terms of the official procedures at the UN and with regard to the intensive process of informing countries around the world, we have succeeded with this initiative. Bees and other pollinators finally have the place they deserve in view of their importance for the world and for humanity. The proclamation of World Bee Day proves that the will to take action does exist. I am happy that realization of the importance of bees for sustainable development and the future of humanity in general has reflected in the consensual support to the resolution.”

Mr Zidan also took the opportunity to thank all countries for their support, but ended with a warning: “This is just the beginning of the difficult process of the protection of bees and other pollinators. In order to be successful, we must bring on board the governments of all countries, the business community and civil society. Awareness of the vital importance of saving the bees must reach every individual. And we must do more than just talk – we must undertake concrete activities to increase care for bees and promote the development of beekeeping – everywhere, including in developing countries.”

Carla Mucavi, Director of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Liaison Office in New York, commented: “Bees play a crucial role in increasing crop yields and promoting food security and nutrition. Without them, we could lose a variety of food such as potatoes, pepper, coffee, pumpkins, carrots, apples, almonds, tomatoes, just to name a few. In short, without bees, FAO cannot achieve a world without hunger. World Bee Day recognizes the importance of these tiny helpers and will increase awareness of the need to protect them.”

“I believe we all agree that every human being on this planet deserves food every day. We have to produce more food every day, and every day more food is dependent on pollinators – with honey bees in the lead. To talk about reducing global hunger without ensuring conditions for the survival of bees and other pollinators, is simply throwing sand in people’s eyes! It is time for everyone to listen to bees, in particular leaders and those who make decisions,” said Bostjan Noc, promoter of the World Bee Day initiative and president of the Slovenian Beekeepers’ Association, adding: “From today on, 20 May will be a worldwide celebration of bees and beekeepers. I believe that with the proclamation of World Bee Day, the world will begin to think more broadly about bees, in particular in the context of ensuring conditions for their survival, and thus for the survival of the human race.”

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