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UN Radio: Annan Appeals for Funds for Iraq

UN Radio: Annan Appeals for Funds for Iraq

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  • Special Report: Annan opens Madrid Conference on Iraq’s Reconstruction
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  • UN Secretary-General Appeals for Funds for Iraq

    UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan today appealed to donors to give generously for the reconstruction of Iraq. Opening a two-day donor conference in Madrid, Spain, the Secretary-General said the international community looked forward to the earliest possible establishment of a sovereign Iraqi Government. But, he added, a start of reconstruction cannot be deferred until that day. The Secretary-General also urged governments not to use monies previously earmarked for other needs and shift them to Iraq.

    Iran Gives IAEA Documents on Its Nuclear Programme

    The Head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Dr. Mohammed El Baradei, has received a large set of documents from an Iranian envoy in Vienna. The representative of Iran to the agency, Ambassador Ali Akbar Salehi submitted the documents to Dr. El Baradei and assured him today that they are comprehensive and accurate. IAEA spokesman Mark Gwozdecky said the Iranian envoy also advised the nuclear agency that in the next few days Iran would agree to the conclusion of an additional protocol with IAEA:

    "Now this is another important positive step and it will allow our inspectors to have the additional authority that they need to conduct credible inspections in Iran. Dr. El Baradei said that he believes that we are in a new phase."

    Mr. Gwozdecky says it is going to take some time to go through all the documents submitted by Iran.

    New Outbreak of Polio Threatens Children in West Africa

    The World Health Organization has warned that the new outbreak of polio is threatening the lives of thousands of children in West Africa. WHO and its partners are working with governments in the region to immunize children against the paralyzing disease. The UN health agency says polio has paralyzed nearly 200 children in Nigeria this year. WHO's spokesman, Oliver Rosenbauer says the latest outbreak is very serious:

    "It's a very terrible disease, this polio. If it strikes you there is no cure, you will be paralyzed for life. So there is really only one means of preventing that, and that is to make sure that you are protected against polio by being vaccinated."

    WHO says that nearly half of the total polio cases around the world are now focused on northern Nigeria.

    A General Assembly Official Says Decolonization is Still an Issue

    The Chairman of the General Assembly's Committee dealing with political and decolonization issues said today that decolonization is still an issue on the agenda of the United Nations. Enrique Loedel of Uruguay said although many territories have achieved self-determination, there are still others which have not. He said maybe the issue is not as fashionable as it was before but decolonization is not over:

    "It would be like a family having several children and when the elders are already grown up not taking care of the small ones. So I believe that in this regard, the decolonization should be regarded as still a pending issue within the UN activities."

    Disarmament Proceeds in Afghanistan The UN Mission in Afghanistan UNAMA announced today that a programme of disarmament, demobilization and reintegration will be officially launched in Kunduz province on Friday. UNAMA says that the disarmament got underway in Kunduz on Monday and around 300 combatants a day have been disarmed at disarmament units run by Afghanistan's New Beginnings Programme and the Ministry of Defence. Soldiers who surrendered their weapons yesterday said they were glad to be returning to civilian life and many had known of nothing else than being a soldier.

    Former Yugoslavia Army Officer Is Transferred to the UN Tribunal A former battalion commander in Yugoslavia's army, Vladimir Kovacevic, was today transferred to the detention unit of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. He is facing war crimes for his role during the 1991 attack on Dubrovnik. The charges against Mr. Kovaceviic, also known as Rambo, include murder, cruel treatment, attacks on civilians and destruction of civilian objects not justified by military necessity

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