The United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has opened the 76th session of the General Assembly. He said world leaders are gathering at a time of great challenge and division.
Last year, the pandemic forced participants to meet online. This year, more than 100 heads of state or government plan to attend in person.
Guterres told them the war on the planet and on each other need to end. He said it's time to focus on fighting humanity's common enemy -- the pandemic.
The leaders are expected to discuss the distribution of coronavirus vaccines. Those from countries where the shots are in short supply have accused those in wealthy nations of hoarding.
They will also debate climate change. Some leaders are under pressure to set more ambitious targets for reducing emissions. UN leaders hope their talks will set the tone for the UN Climate Change Conference. Those meetings begin next month.