Monthly Archives: May 2006
“The United Nations must become more effective in tackling global terrorism, Tony Blair has said. He said that new worldwide threats mean that the international community must act “earlier and more effectively”, and that a UN debate is needed on how that can happen.
“The whole point about the international community today is that these problems are urgent, they need to be tackled. If they’re not tackled, the consequences are very quickly felt around the world. And you have got to have institutions that are capable of taking them on and tackling them and getting action taken.”
FT: “Zimbabwe on Thursday rejected a fledgling initiative by Kofi Annan, UN secretary general, to broker a solution to the country’s economic and political crisis.
George Charamba, spokesman for president Robert Mugabe, told the state-owned Herald newspaper that Zimbabwe was “not a UN issue”, and described a previous invitation to Mr Annan, issued during its controversial slum clearance operation, as “stale”. He said the Harare government was “unaware of any UN intervention on Zimbabwe”, and that the UN should instead be challenging “illegal sanctions imposed on it”.
“Some 90 experts in early warning systems and natural disaster risk management met at a United Nations symposium in Geneva today to strengthen global mechanisms, especially for less developed countries, that have already helped to reduce the number of fatalities by nearly two-thirds at a time when such catastrophes have increased four-fold.
“An Indonesian who died of bird flu after nursing his sick son might have caught the virus in a case of direct human-to-human transmission, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said today.
WHO gave its first details of the case of a family cluster of H5N1 avian influenza infections in which six people have now died, and today said it was still looking for the source of the outbreak.
“Dr. Lee Jong-wook, who led the U.N. health agency’s battles against SARS and bird flu, died Monday following surgery for a blood clot in the brain. He was 61.
Tributes praised Lee for his effectiveness in spurring the world to build its defenses against a potentially deadly flu pandemic during his tenure as director-general of the World Health Organization.
“Dr. Lee worked tirelessly to improve the health of millions of people, from combating tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS to his aggressive efforts to eradicate polio,” President Bush said in a statement.
“The world has lost a great man today,” said U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan. “He tackled the most difficult problems head on, while upholding the highest principles.”
The SG: In Ethiopia over the weekend, the SG is now in the United Arab Emirates. Today he met with Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashed Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, where the two discussed developments in the region, including Syria, Iran, Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan, and in the Middle East Peace Process.