Sep 26 2012

UN General Assembly Meeting in New York Influenced Heavily by US Presidential Election

Feature Stories | Published 26 Sep 2012, 10:06 am | Comments Off on UN General Assembly Meeting in New York Influenced Heavily by US Presidential Election -

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United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon solemnly marked the start of the 67th United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York City yesterday saying, “I am here to sound the alarm about our direction as a human family.” In his opening speech to the 120 world leaders who have gathered this week to discuss the planet’s current geopolitical climate, Ban addressed everything from Palestinian statehood, climate change, the humanitarian crisis in the Sahel region of Africa, North Korea and the rising tensions between Israel and Iran over nuclear weaponry.

He also demanded that nations take action to stop the ongoing 18 month long conflict in Syria where, according to some estimates, as many as 26,000 lives have now been lost and very little action has been taken by the world community to stop Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s war against his opposition.

President Obama also addressed the delegates, asking world leaders to join him in condemning the anti-American protests around the Middle East sparked by the anti-Muslim Youtube film. He said, “There are no words that excuse the killing of innocents. There is no video that justifies an attack on an embassy. There is no slander that provides an excuse for people to burn a restaurant in Lebanon, or destroy a school in Tunis, or cause death and destruction in Pakistan.”

Obama also addressed the escalating tensions between Israel and Iran, in which Israel is accusing Iran of developing a nuclear weapons program, by stating that the United States must “do what we must to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.” Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who will leave office next June, is scheduled to speak to the Assembly for the last time today, while Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi will make his debut at the meeting. The parade of nations and speeches continues through this week.

GUEST: James Paul, Executive Director of the Global Policy Forum

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