UN High-Level Session Will Be Busiest Ever —Ban

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UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says world leaders will have wide range of pressing global challenges to tackle at the General Assembly 67th session in New York on Sept. 25.

No fewer than 120 world leaders are expected to take part in the?general debate taking?from Sept. 25 to ?Oct.1.

Ban is expected to ?host a number of meetings on the sideline of the debate, including the rule of law, polio eradication, disarmament, sustainable energy and nutrition.

He will also launch a new initiative, entitled: “Education First’’ during the session.

Laying out the agenda for the General Assembly’s annual high-level debate at a press conference at? the UN Headquarters on Wednesday, Ban said: “this year’s general debate will be among our busiest ever.

“This reflects the tumultuous times in which we live, a time of turmoil and transition. At a time of rising inequality and unemployment, a time of rising temperatures and intolerance, the UN itself must rise to the moment,’’ he said.

According to him, the ongoing crisis in Syria, where over 18,000 people, mostly civilians, have been killed since the uprising began in March 2011, will be high on the agenda.

“The deteriorating situation in Syria will be foremost in our minds.’’

He noted that a series of mini-summits and special meetings would focus on the emergency in Africa’s Sahel region, progress in Somalia, the encouraging transitions in Myanmar and Yemen, instability in the Democratic Republic of Congo and relations between Sudan and South Sudan.

Ban said that the opening of the Assembly’s 67th session would be taking place amid widespread violence linked to intolerance.

“I once again condemn those who deliberately provoke others with hatred and bigotry. I also join with others in speaking out against those, who in response to such provocations, fan those flames further still.

“It is time for calm, restraint and responsible political and community leadership.’’ (NAN)

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