For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
September 14, 2005
Fact Sheet: President Bush Addresses the United Nations High-Level Plenary Meeting
Today, President Bush Addressed The Delegates Of The United Nations (UN)
General Assembly. The President outlined an agenda of progress and reform
to advance the UN's vital work and ideals by confronting the scourge of
terrorism, fighting poverty and disease in developing nations, and
spreading human liberty. By working together, the members of the UN will
create the conditions for progress and peace in this new century.
President Bush Thanked The UN And Member Countries For Contributions To
Hurricane Katrina Recovery Efforts. In this time of great challenge for
the United States, many nations have sent a clear message that the American
people are not alone. Assistance is pouring into the Gulf Coast from
virtually every corner of the globe. More than 115 countries and nearly a
dozen international organizations have offered assistance. Our Nation is
lifted and strengthened by the care and support of the international
The President Challenged The International Community To Help Developing
Nations Through Free Trade. The international community must work together
in the Doha negotiations to eliminate agricultural subsidies that distort
trade and stunt development, and to eliminate tariffs and other barriers to
open markets for farmers around the world. The United States is ready to
eliminate all tariffs, subsidies, and other barriers to the free flow of
goods and services as other nations do the same. This is key to overcoming
poverty in the world's poorest nations - and promoting prosperity and
opportunity for all nations.
Confronting The Threat Of Terrorism
The Global Community Is Working To Confront Terrorism And Must Complete The
Comprehensive Convention On International Terrorism. Terrorism has come to
cities and countries across the globe. In response, nations have worked
together to break up terrorist networks that cross borders while rooting
out radical cells within their own borders. Terrorist sanctuaries have
been removed and terrorist financing has been drained. As we fight, we
must be clear about our purpose. The Comprehensive Convention on
International Terrorism must be completed to put every nation on record -
the targeting and deliberate killing of civilians and non-combatants by
terrorists cannot be justified or legitimized by any cause or grievance.
The Global Community Is Working To Prevent The Proliferation Of Weapons Of
Mass Destruction And Must Sign The International Convention On The
Suppression Of Acts Of Nuclear Terrorism. The international community has
joined together to break up and bring to justice terrorists who are trying
to acquire these dangerous weapons. Already, more than 60 nations have
joined together in the Proliferation Security Initiative to intercept
shipments of these weapons. Further, the nations of the world must sign
the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear
Terrorism. The UN must send a clear message that it will not allow the
rulers of outlaw regimes who sponsor terror and pursue weapons of mass
murder to threaten the peace and stability of the world.
Fighting Poverty And Disease In Developing Nations
Promoting Reform And Confronting Poverty In Developing Nations. The
international community is taking steps to change the way it fights
poverty, curbs corruption, and provides aid. In 2002, nations created the
Monterrey Consensus linking new aid from developed nations to real reform
in developing ones. Through the Millennium Challenge Account, the United
States has increased its aid to developing nations and helped expand
economic freedom and investment in education and health. These programs
help unleash the entrepreneurial spirit in the developing world - and bring
the citizens of these countries into the world economy.
Confronting Global Health Epidemics Such As Avian Influenza. The President
announced a new International Partnership on Avian and Pandemic Influenza
that will bring together key nations and international organizations to
improve global readiness on this growing threat. The Partnership will
require transparency of nations to rapidly respond to dangerous outbreaks.
For many countries, AIDS, malaria, and other diseases have become
humanitarian tragedies and significant obstacles to development. The
United States and other countries are working together to provide poor
countries with emergency life-saving drugs they need to fight infectious
epidemics. Through these efforts, we fulfill a moral duty to protect our
citizens, heal the sick, and comfort the afflicted.
Lifting The Crushing Burden Of Debt. The United States and many nations
have acted to lift the financial burden that limits economic growth in
developing countries and holds millions of people in poverty. Today, poor
countries with the heaviest debt burdens are receiving more than $30
billion in debt relief. To prevent the future build-up of debt, the United
States and other nations have agreed that international financial
institutions should increasingly provide new aid in the form of grants,
rather than loans.
Promoting Free Trade Through The Successful Conclusion Of The Doha Round.
The international community must reduce trade barriers and subsidies that
hold developing economies back. The Doha Round is the most promising way
to achieve this goal. The elimination of trade barriers under Doha could
lift hundreds of millions of people out of poverty over the next 15 years.
To help alleviate poverty in this new century, the Doha trade talks must be
brought to a successful conclusion.
Spreading Human Liberty
The Members Of The UN Must Work To Spread The Hope Of Freedom Around The
World. Those who stand for human rights must also stand for human freedom.
Freedom is the permanent hope of mankind, and free nations are peaceful
nations. Today, the world is presented with a moment of great opportunity
for the cause of freedom. In the last two years alone, tens of millions
have voted in free elections for the first time in Afghanistan, Iraq,
Lebanon, the Palestinian territories, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine, and Georgia.
These nations are inspiring millions more across the broader Middle East.
The UN has a vital role to play in encouraging their aspirations and
nurturing freedom's progress.
The United Nations Democracy Fund Will Help The Advance Of Freedom.
Through the new UN Democracy Fund, proposed by President Bush at last
year's General Assembly, UN members are working to help nations who want to
join the democratic world. Eight nations have already pledged tens of
millions of dollars to get the Fund started. This year, President Bush and
Indian Prime Minister Singh will join Secretary General Annan and other
leaders in inaugurating this new institution. Every free nation has an
interest in the success of this Fund - and every free nation has a
responsibility in advancing the cause of liberty and, through it, the cause
The United States And The United Nations Are Working To Build A Lasting
Iraqi Democracy. The whole world has an interest in the success of the
Iraqi people, and no civilized nation has an interest in seeing a new
terror state emerge in Iraq. The UN played a vital role in supporting the
success of Iraq's January elections and drafting of a new constitution.
Now, the international community must continue to support the Iraqi people
as they complete the journey to a fully constitutional government, because
an Iraqi democracy will help the Middle East grow in peace and hope and
Reforming The UN
The UN Must Reform And Renew Itself In Its Own Great Ideals. The UN must
be strong and efficient, free of corruption, and accountable to the people
it serves. The UN must stand for integrity - and live by the high
standards it sets for others. When member states choose notorious abusers
of human rights to sit on the UN Human Rights Commission, they discredit a
noble effort and undermine the credibility of the whole organization. If
member countries want the UN to be respected and effective, they should
begin by making sure it is worthy of respect.