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Proposed UN Reforms Would Improve Performance

Proposed UN Reforms Would Improve Performance, Annan Says

New York, Apr 23 2005

Secretary-General Kofi Annan today advocated support for his proposals to reform the United Nations, calling them the most far reaching ever put forward in its 60-year history.

"The United Nations will comprehensively improve performance if the Member States adopt the proposals," he told reporters in Jakarta, Indonesia, where he was attending th Asian-African Summit.

He said the reform proposals reflected his conviction that "without development there can be no security and without security there can be no development, and without human rights and the rule of law we can have neither security nor development."

During his meetings at the Summit, the Secretary-General has been urging the leaders of African and Asian countries to support the reforms, which are spelled out in his seminal report, "In Larger Freedom," and include an overhaul of the UN's human rights forum, an expansion of the Security Council and requirements for fighting poverty.

"The economic reform program in 'In Larger Freedom' puts the Millennium Development Goals squarely at the center of the global agenda, and thus makes development, and the challenge of development of poor countries, the highest priority of global economic development," he said. The Millennium Development Goals are a set of time-bound global antipoverty targets adopted by world leaders at a 2000 UN summit.

Another proposal concerns the establishment of a peacebuilding commission "that will help countries in distress, countries coming out of conflict, to rebuild their institutions and return to normalcy," Mr. Annan explained.

Asked about a planned meeting between Prime Minister Koizumi of Japan and President Hu Jintao of China, the Secretary-General said he hoped it would serve to "reduce the temperature a little bit and set their relations back on track."

He added that China and Japan are "mature nations and they have wise leaders."

ENDS

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