New US Envoy Arrives at United Nations
VOA, United Nations,
The new U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Susan
Rice, has presented her credentials to U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon. Afterwards, she
told reporters she will pursue a few main priorities.
|Susan Rice, the new
US Ambassador to the United Nations, speaks during her first official
press briefing at UN headquarters in New York, 26 Jan. 2009
Repeating what she told Congress during her confirmation hearing earlier this
month, Ambassador Susan Rice said the United States' goals at the United Nations
"Strengthening the capacity of the organization to engage effectively in complex
peace operations at a time when the burdens and challenges placed on the
institution are greater than ever," Rice said. "Advancing our national and
collective agenda to address climate change and the challenges of
non-proliferation are two other important objectives. And putting the United
States at the center of international efforts to support poverty reduction,
development, fighting disease and achieving the Millennium Development Goals."
She said President Barack Obama's view is clear - that the United States'
security and well-being can best be advanced in cooperation and in partnership
with other nations.
"There is no more important forum for that effective cooperation than the United
Nations. I am looking very much forward to engaging in a cooperative,
constructive fashion with my colleagues here in New York," Rice said.
Asked to comment on what action the new administration might take on Iran's
nuclear pursuits, Ambassador Rice said the United States remains "deeply
concerned" about the threat that program poses to the region and the
international community. She said the U.S. would pursue vigorous diplomacy that
would be both directly with Iran and continued collaboration with the other four
permanent members of the Security Council and Germany through the group known as
the "P-Five Plus One".
"Dialogue and diplomacy must go hand-in-hand with a very firm message from the
United States and the international community that Iran needs to meet its
obligations as defined by the Security Council and its continued refusal to do
so will only cause pressure to increase," she said.
In Africa, Ambassador Rice has said the slow deployment of U.N. peacekeepers to
the Darfur region of Sudan is "unacceptable." She told reporters that in her
meeting with the U.N. secretary-general they discussed effective efforts to
support the full deployment of the peacekeepers so there is the capacity on the
ground to fully protect civilians there from the ongoing genocide.
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