Africa, Middle East in focus as UN chief meets Turkish FM

Africa, Middle East in focus as UN chief meets Turkish FM
# 27 September 2011 21:14 (UTC +04:00)
The two "discussed a range of regional issues, including the situation in Libya, the horn of Africa and Syria," according to a UN readout here at the end of the meeting, which took place on the sidelines of the week-long general debate of the UN General Assembly, which enters its final day.

They also exchanged views on the Palmer report, the Cyprus talks, and the upcoming conference on Afghanistan to be held in Istanbul on Nov.2.

In May 2011, ministers from Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Iran, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, as well as UN Special Representative for Afghanistan Staffan De Mistura agreed that Turkey should organize an international conference on Afghanistan at the beginning of November.

The officials, while reaffirming their respect for Afghanistan’ s sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity, also expressed their support for transfer of all responsibilities to the Afghans by 2014. They said a secure, stable and prosperous Afghanistan is vital for world peace and stability. However, they agreed that this could only be achieved through a wide framework reflecting friendship and cooperation.

During their talks on Tuesday, the UN chief expressed his appreciation for the role of Turkey in hosting the Fourth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDCs).

About 60 heads of state or government as well as 100 ministers attended the May conference in Turkey, which evaluated development progress and helped boost the sustainable development of the LDCs.

The UN conference on the LDCs, held every 10 years, aims to increase cooperation between nations to work out overall plans, priorities and concrete objectives to support the development of the LDCs.

The LDCs are a category of states that are deemed highly disadvantaged in their development process. The current LDCs consist of 48 countries -- 33 in Africa, 14 in the Asia-Pacific region and one in Latin America.
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