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UN Radio: Annan Bush Chirac Address UN On Iraq

UN Radio: Annan Bush Chirac Address UN Assembly Over Iraq

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  • UN Radio Special Report: Kofi Annan, George Bush, Jacques Chirac address question of Iraq at opening of UN General Assembly Session
  • UN Radio Special Report: World Leaders Declare HIV/AIDS More Devastating than any Terrorist Attack
  • Annan Urges Reform Of Main UN Bodies

    Secretary-General Kofi Annan is urging reforms of the main UN bodies to respond to terrorism, weapons of mass destruction and other threats.
    Opening debate in the 58th session of the UN General Assembly, the Secretary-General says he intends to establish a high-level panel to, among other things, examine current challenges to peace and security. He says the panel will also review the functioning of the major organs of the United Nations and the relationship between them:

    "Fourth, to recommend ways of strengthening the United Nations through reform of its institutions and processes. The panel will focus primarily on threats to peace and security. But it will also need to examine other global challenges, in so far as these may influence or connect with those threats."

    On the question of Iraq, Mr. Annan says that subject to security considerations, the UN system is prepared to play its full part in working for a satisfactory outcome in Iraq. He says the organization would do so as part of an effort by the whole international community, pulling together on the basis of a sound and viable policy.

    Bush Invites UN to Play Expanded Role in Iraq

    United States President George Bush invited the United Nations to play an expanded role in Iraq's reconstruction. The American president said Washington is working with friends and allies on a new Security Council resolution which would expand the UN's role in Iraq:

    "As is in the aftermath of other conflicts, the United Nations should assist in developing a constitution and training civil servants and conducting free and fair elections."

    President Bush says every young democracy needs the help of friends, adding that Iraq needs aid and all nations of goodwill should step forward to provide that support.

    Brazil Proposes Establishing a Global Fund to Fight Hunger

    Brazil has proposed setting up a Global Fund to Fight Hunger. President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva told the General Assembly that the eradication of hunger is a challenge to civilization that requires urgent action:

    "Will we act to eliminate hunger or will we forsake our credibility through omission? We no longer have the right to allege that we were not home when they knocked at our door asking for solidarity. The true path to peace is to fight hunger and extreme poverty without truce."

    President Lula also urged that the UN General Assembly be strengthened politically so as to focus on priority issues. The general debate will continue in the General Assembly until October 2nd.

    IAEA Steps up Probe of Iran's Nuclear Programme

    The UN nuclear agency (IAEA) said Tuesday it is stepping up inspections in Iran ahead of the 31 October deadline for Teheran to enable the UN to verify it has no secret atomic weapons programme. IAEA spokeswoman Melissa Flemming says the agency would send teams of experts to Teheran for inspections and face-to-face talks with Iranian officials:

    "IAEA has a very intense period of inspections before 31 October that would be necessary in order to fill in the blanks where the IAEA has questions about the nature of Iran's nuclear programme. So we plan a period of intense inspections and talks in Iran."

    Flemming says the IAEA has outlined the requirements Iran needs to provide in order to make the operation feasible.

    Thousands of Refugees Flee Liberia for Guinea: UN

    More than 4,000 Liberians have fled to Guinea's southern forest region over the past week to escape continued fighting and instability. And the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) says more refugees are on the way. UNHCR spokesman Ron Redmond says most of them are women, children and the elderly who are in dire need of food and health care:

    "The fact that Liberians continue to flee is very worrying to UNHCR. It's obvious that many areas in Liberia are still very insecure and the fighting is continuing. This makes it all the more urgent that peacekeepers be deloyed throughout the country as soon as possible."

    Spokesman Ron Redmond warns that the last thing UNHCR needs is another outflow of Liberian refugees to neighbouring countries.

    Resources to Fight HIV/AIDS Double but Inadequate: UN High-Level Panel

    A high-level panel on HIV/AIDS has agreed that while resources available to fight AIDS have doubled since 2001, they remain woefully inadequate. Secretary-General Kofi Annan however, says the panel's conclusions were not pessimistic, adding that "we are learning more everyday about what works, resources are increasing and political leadership is gaining steam".

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