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Cablegate: Un General Debate: Pakistan, Zimbabwe, Sudan And

VZCZCXYZ0008
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #0874/01 2731634
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 291634Z SEP 08
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5012

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 000874

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV ECON PHUM UNGA PK ZI SU AS JA KS
NO, NL, SP, KU, FM, PU, WZ, TT, CM, BX, AN, SM, SC
SUBJECT: UN GENERAL DEBATE: PAKISTAN, ZIMBABWE, SUDAN AND
OTHERS

REF: STATE 98982

1. SUMMARY: During the afternoon of September 25, the UN
General Assembly General Debate continued with its tenth
plenary meeting. In an afternoon featuring Pakistan and
Zimbabwe's Heads of State and Sudan's Vice-President,
security issues were a primary focus. Participants called
for peace in the Middle East, continued efforts to combat
terrorism, and the proliferation of Weapons of Mass
Destruction, and expressed concerns regarding nuclear energy
(specifically in reference to Iran and North Korea). The
leaders of several developed countries emphasized that
increased efforts to protect the environment were critical to
counter the effects of climate change and the global food
crisis. Calls for UN reform, particularly for
"democratization" of the United Nations and expansion of the
Security Council continued. Many speakers called for greater
measures to ensure the protection of human rights, with
several focusing on women's rights and religious tolerance,
and some calling for the elimination of the death penalty.
As in previous meetings, many speakers focused on achievement
of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), with the leaders
of developing nations calling upon the developed world to
fulfill MDG commitments. Several speakers -- from both
developed and developing countries -- focused on health care
reform, particularly concerning reproductive health. END
SUMMARY

2. During the meeting, the following spoke: Micronesian
President Mori; Guinean President Vieira; Swazi King Mswati
III; Timorese President Ramos-Horta; Zimbabwean President
Mugabe; Cameroonian President Biya; Pakistani President
Zardari; Sudanese Vice-President Taha; Spanish President
Zapatero; Japanese Prime Minister Aso; Kuwaiti Prime Minister
Sheikh Al-Sabah; Korean Prime Minister Seung-soo; Bruneian
Crown Prince Haji Billah; Australian Prime Minister Kevin
Rudd; Andorran Chief of Government Pintat; Sammarinese Head
of Government Stolfi; Norwegian Prime Minister Stoltenberg;
Kittitian/Nevisian Prime Minister Douglas; and Dutch Prime
Minister Balkenende. All statements are available at
www.un.org/ga/63/generaldebate.

PAKISTAN
--------

3. President Zardari eulogized his late wife, former Prime
Minister Benazir Bhutto, praised democracy, pledged support
in combating terrorism, and asserted Pakistani sovereignty.
Citing last week's bombing of the Marriott Hotel in
Islamabad, Zardari emphasized Pakistan's victimization: "We
do not learn about terror from reading newspapers....We have
lost more soldiers than all 37 countries that have forces in
Afghanistan put together." Zardari appealed for time and
space to combat terrorism. "A democratic Pakistan is in the
process of reaching the national consensus necessary to
confront and defeat the terrorists," he said. With no
specific reference to the United States, Zardari warned that
"Unilateral actions of great powers should not inflame the
passions of allies. Violating our nation's sovereignty is
not helpful in eliminating the terrorist menace. Indeed,
this could have the opposite effect." Zardari pledged to
bring order to Pakistani territory, cooperate with
Afghanistan and NATO, and continue dialogue with India. He
denounced the imprisonment of Aung San Suu Kyi, whom he
called the democratically elected leader of Myanmar.
Diverging from his prepared remarks, Zardari expressed
specific appreciation for the support of FLOTUS Laura Bush on
this issue.

ZIMBABWE
--------

4. Per reftel instructions, all senior USG officials vacated
the U.S. chair during Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's
intervention, leaving only a notetaker. Mugabe denounced the
United States and the United Kingdom for committing
"genocide" in Iraq. He called for an end to the
"self-righteous unilateral sanctions" based on "lies and
machinations" so that Zimbabwe could "focus undisturbed on
its economic turnaround program." On the Zimbabwean
power-sharing agreement, Mugabe stated "Africa is capable of
solving her own problems" and thanked former South African
President Thabo Mbeki for his mediation.

SUDAN
-----

5. In a 30-minute intervention, Sudanese Vice-President Taha
chided the international community for tardy follow-through
an financial commitments and interference in Sudan's internal
affairs. He asserted Sudan's sole responsibility for Darfur
and denounced "foreign conspiracies that threaten peace." He


said such movements did not seek peace in Darfur, but regime
change in Sudan, adding that the Sudanese government is
implementing its agreements "in an exemplary manner". Taha
characterized the arrest warrant against Sudan's President as
a "moral assassination" with "ulterior motives". (NOTE:
This week's Group of 77 Ministerial Meeting, taking place in
New York, elected Sudan as Chairman of the G-77 for 2009.
END NOTE.)

HUMAN RIGHTS
------------

6. Dutch Prime Minister Balkenende recalled the "four
freedoms" as defined by former U.S. President Franklin Delano
Roosevelt (freedom of speech and religion, and freedom from
want and fear), and emphasized the need for greater efforts
to eliminate the use of torture and the death penalty and to
promote freedom of expression and belief. He called for
wider acceptance of the jurisdiction of the International
Court of Justice, and called for a fair and balanced Human
Rights Council. Balkende also characterized the access to
potable water as a human right. Norwegian Prime Minister
Stoltenberg reminded the Assembly that the Universal
Declaration on Human Rights was to guide the body in its
actions, arguing that the job of the United Nations is to
ensure the rights and opportunities of individuals, groups,
and countries. Spanish President Zapatero urged the Assembly
to not be "complacent" in working to protect the rights
outlined in the declaration, and called for a universal
moratorium on the death penalty by 2015. Andorra, Kuwait,
San Marino and Swaziland called for progress in the area of
women's rights, and Brunei and San Marino urged the practice
of religious tolerance.

ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
------------------------

7. Virtually all speakers raised concerns regarding climate
change and the need for greater environmental protection
measures. Noting that carbon emissions from one part of the
planet affect the entire planet and could radically impact
our future, Australian Prime Minister Rudd implored Member
States to take collective action to reduce carbon emissions.
Norwegian Prime Minister Stoltenberg called for efforts
against deforestation, which he said would be the most
effective and quickest way to reduce greenhouse gas
emissions. The leaders of many developing nations said that
climate change was having devastating effects on their
countries, particularly by virtue of more frequent natural
disasters and the diminishing availability of food staples
due to phenomena like deforestation, desertification, and
flooding.

ECONOMIC REFORM
---------------

8. Australian Prime Minister Rudd termed the current "quantum
of financial institutional failure" "significant" and
"unprecedented." He believed the global financial crisis
served as a call to the international community to act, and
said that governments have a responsibility to protect
financial markets. Rudd called for reform of financial
markets and regulatory systems and for clear incentives to
encourage financial institutions to behave responsibly.
Japanese Prime Minister Aso urged calm in the face of the
financial crisis. Micronesian President Mori said that the
financial turbulence emanating from the larger economies
placed everyone at risk. Norwegian Prime Minister
Stoltenberg referred to the "unsound investment" which
"threatens the homes and the jobs of the middle class." The
leaders of several developing countries noted that the
economic stability stemming from developed countries had a
global impact.
Khalilzad

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