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UN Radio: Annan Calls For Nations To Respect Law

UN Radio: Annan Calls For Nations To Respect Law

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  • Annan urges respect for the rule of law

    World leaders gathered at the United Nations Tuesday as the General Assembly opened debate in its 59th session on a global agenda highlighted by terrorism and conflict, humanitarian disasters and a widening gap between rich and poor countries.

    "Indeed today, more than ever, the world needs an effective mechanism through which to seek common solutions to common problems."

    UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in a report to the General Assembly on the work of the United Nations, warns that "the rule of law is at risk around the world" He says it is by rigorously upholding international law that we can and must fulfill our responsibility to protect innocent civilians from genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

    "Those who seek to bestow legitimacy must themselves embody it; and those who invoke international law must themselves submit to it."

    Mr. Annan says again and again, fundamental laws are shamelessly disregarded -- laws that ordain respect for innocent life, civilians and the vulnerable, especially children.

    United States proposes establishing "democracy fund" in the UN

    The United States has proposed establishing a "Democracy Fund" within the United Nations. President George W. Bush says the fund would help countries lay the foundations of democracy by instituting the rule of law, independent courts, a free press, political parties, and trade unions.
    Mr. Bush made the proposal in a wide-ranging statement to the UN General Assembly.

    "Today I have outlined a broad agenda to advance human dignity, and enhance the security of all of us. The defeat of terror, the protection of human rights, the spread of prosperity, the advance of democracy - these causes, these ideals call us to great work in the world."

    Mr. Bush says the United States will make an initial contribution to the fund. He defended his decision to invade Iraq and urged support for the interim Iraqi government. The American president also called for increased efforts to combat HIV/AIDS and promote better education in the developing world.

    Tanzania urges rich countries to do their part in the war on poverty

    Tanzania has called for an unprecedented commitment -in deeds, not words- to the global war on poverty. President Benjamin Mkapa says African countries doing their part in the global compact on poverty alleviation should not be constrained by lack of external resources.

    "In Monterrey, developed countries pledged to match stronger reform efforts in developing countries with increased support. Tanzania asks that they should now show leadership by delivering on their promises."

    President Mkapa says when both rich and poor countries meet their obligations tangible progress is realized.

    Annan rings Peace Bell, calls for greater tolerance among mankind

    The opening of the debate on world affairs in the General Assembly coincides with the annual Peace Bell ceremony at the United Nations. (FX ..bell…FX..bell). The bell is rung on the occasion of International Peace Day, observed today. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the bell which was given to the United Nations by the UN Association of Japan back in 1954.

    "Today, we listen to the ringing of the bell as solace while we contemplate the tribulations of the past year, and as a source of strength as we prepare to take on the trials ahead."

    At this morning's ceremony Secretary-General Kofi Annan called for greater tolerance and understanding among the peoples of the world.

    More than 110 countries sign resolution against poverty, hunger

    More than 110 countries have signed a declaration against hunger and poverty at a summit here at UN headquarters in New York. The declaration establishes that "there is enough knowledge and resources in the world to free us from hunger and poverty, and to promote sustainable economic development with social justice." It also says that the fight against poverty and social injustice is vital for security and stability, not only for emerging countries but for industrialized countries as well. Earlier, Secretary-General Kofi Annan warned that progress in eradicating extreme poverty has been uneven.

    "It is easy to say that something must be done to generate more resources to defeat poverty and hunger. The challenge is what to do."

    Annan says with creativity and political will, the international community could do better.

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