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UN Radio: UN Not Taking Over and Running Iraq

UN Radio: UN Not Taking Over and Running Iraq: Annan

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  • UN Radio special report: UN Security Council Members Meet in Geneva to Discuss Iraq
  • UN Radio special report: UN Envoy for Middle East Says Peace Process Is at a Standstill - insists Chairman Arafat "not irrelevant"
  • UN Not Taking Over and Running Iraq: Annan

    Secretary-General Kofi Annan says the UN is not seeking a peacekeeping presence in Iraq. Mr. Annan says this past weekend's meeting in Geneva between the five permanent members of the Security Council was the first time since the war that they sat in one room to discuss the construction of Iraq. He told UN reporters Monday that it's not a question of the UN taking over and running Iraq, but he believes the Organization can assist Iraqis in administering their own territory.

    "It's not a question of UN running Iraq. Obviously UN can play a role but as I have indicated, that role has to be clearly defined by the Council, it has to be achievable and of course the security environment should also permit us to play a role."

    Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

    Larsen Calls for Increased Activity to Move Mid East Peace Process along

    The Israeli-Palestinian peace process has stalled. That assessment comes from the UN's top official in the region Terje Roed Larsen. Larsen warned that without a major change in the situation on the ground, a further deterioration, resulting in major bloodshed, seems inevitable. He said the lack of trust between the Israelis and Palestinians illustrates the need for increased activity by the international community to move the peace process along.

    "While the situation is grave, it is alarmist to speak of the demise of the peace process. But if we abandon the course of peace as drawn in the Road Map, we would cede to those individuals and groups that do not want peace. We would surrender to those who want to reign through force and terror."

    More than 40 countries have signalled their intention to speak in the Security Council's meeting on the Middle East.

    WTO Trade Meeting Ends Without Agreement

    In Cancun, the World Trade Organization's Ministerial Conference ended Sunday without accomplishing its goals. The failure of the trade talks came after the chairman realized there would be no agreement to move forward and called off negotiations. We have a report from Jorge Miyares.

    "After four days of intense negotiations, the main diverging point was the refusal of industrialised nations to cut subsidies they give to their farmers. Developing nations were also upset with industrialised nations' proposals pushing for approval of the so-called "Singapore issues", pushed by Japan and the European Union. They request the liberalization of foreign investment, a transparency in government purchasing, and trade facilitation -making things like customs procedures simpler. Developing countries rejected staring negotiations on these issues, fearing that new rules on those items would deprive them of control of their national industry."

    Jorge Miyares in Cancun.

    Annan Regrets Failure of WTO Ministerial Meeting in Cancun

    Meanwhile, Secretary-General Kofi Annan regrets that the ministerial meeting of the WTO was suspended without agreement. But he hopes this is not the end of the road and that the Doha Round will still deliver on its promise of greater exchange and prosperity for all, especially the developing countries. The Secretary-General also notes that for the first time, the developing countries have found their collective voice in international trade negotiations and acted in concert to defend their interests, notably on the issue of agricultural protection and subsidies.

    Mr. Annan believes this is a positive development which holds great hope for the future. Earlier, the Secretary-General told reporters he knew it was going to be a difficult session.

    "I had hoped all along that we would try to retain some of the spirit of Doha and really try and come up with an agreement that would be beneficial to developing countries as they try to improve their own situation."

    The Secretary-General said he had expected the meeting to achieve much than it did.

    Annan Condemns Coup d'Etat in Guinea-Bissau

    Secretary-General Kofi Annan has condemned the coup d'etat in Guinea-Bissau. The army seized power in the former Portuguese colony on Sunday, arresting the president whom they blame for the West African nation's economic decline and failing to call elections. United Nations Spokesman Fred Eckhard says the Secretary-General has called for the restoration of constitutional order.

    "He further called on the parties concerned not to resort to any acts of violence or retribution and urged that every effort be made to ensure the safety and security of all."

    Aid Workers Arrive in Liberian Coastal Town after 4-Month Absence

    Aid workers have arrived in the small coastal town of Harper in southern Liberia. Officials say it's the first time humanitarian workers have gone to the town since May when rebel forces from the Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD), put an immediate halt to relief efforts there.

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