The White House, President George W. Bush Click to print this document

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
September 23, 2008

Fact Sheet: Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century
President Bush Speaks To The United Nations General Assembly On Combating Terrorism
And The Conditions That Give Rise To It

     Fact sheet In Focus: Global Diplomacy

Today, President Bush addressed the United Nations General Assembly, highlighting how the United States has partnered closely with other nations to address global challenges. His visit to the UN highlights how the United States has partnered closely with other nations to address global challenges and how we have made remarkable progress. The trip also provides an opportunity to highlight how the UN can better address existing and emerging challenges.

The UN And Other Multilateral Organizations Must Continue To Actively Confront Terror

Multilateral organizations must take an unequivocal moral stand against terrorism. The vast majority of nations in the UN General Assembly now agree that tactics like suicide bombing, hostage-taking, and hijacking are never legitimate. The UN Security Council has passed resolutions declaring terror unlawful and requiring all nations to crack down on terrorist financing. Earlier this month, Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon held a conference to highlight victims of terror, where he stated that terrorism can never be justified. At their Summit this year in Toyako, Japan, G-8 leaders declared that all terrorist acts are criminal and must be universally condemned.

To Uphold The UN Charter's Promise Of Peace And Security In The 21st Century, We Must Confront The Ideology Of The Terrorists

The UN must challenge tyranny as vigorously as we challenge terror.Nations in the UN have supported the efforts of dissidents, reformers, and civil society advocates in newly free societies through the new UN Democracy Fund. As young democracies around the world continue to make brave stands for liberty, multilateral organizations like the UN must continue to stand with them.

Today, President and Mrs. Bush are also hosting a lunch for democracy dissidents to discuss how to advance the Freedom Agenda including the protection of universally recognized human rights for all people across the globe. The President has issued a National Security Presidential Directive to institutionalize his Freedom Agenda, offering a guidepost to future administrations of policies and practices to promote freedom and democratic institutions.

Extending The Reach Of Political Freedom Is Essential To Prevailing In The Great Struggle Of Our Time – But It Is Not Enough

Many in the UN have answered the call to help alleviate hopelessness by addressing its causes – poverty, disease, and ignorance. Over the years, many nations have made well-intentioned efforts to promote these goals. Yet the success of these efforts must be measured by more than intentions – it must be measured by results.

Today, President Bush is also attending a UN event on food security and combating global hunger. The U.S. is providing approximately $5.5 billion to fight global hunger in FY 2008 and 2009. Since mid-April, in response to President Bush's request for additional resources, Congress has provided $1.6 billion in new emergency and development assistance to combat the international food crisis. Including food aid resources from the Bill Emerson Humanitarian Trust, the total "new" money available for food security programming in FY 2008 and 2009 exceeds $1.8 billion.

Tomorrow, President Bush is participating in a meeting on free trade with leaders of Western Hemisphere nations. The leaders will launch the Pathways to Prosperity in the Americas initiative, which will provide a forum to work together to ensure the benefits of trade are broadly shared throughout societies, deepen the connections among regional markets, and expand cooperation on development issues. The President will stress the importance of congressional approval of the pending free trade agreements and of Western Hemisphere nations' working together to reach a successful Doha Round agreement as soon as possible.

In The 21st Century, The World Needs A Confident, Effective UN

The UN is an organization of extraordinary potential. As the UN rebuilds its headquarters, it must also open the door to a new age of transparency, accountability, and seriousness of purpose. Where there is inefficiency and corruption, it must be corrected. Where members fail to uphold their obligations, there must be strong action:

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