No gathering of World leaders at UNGA in Sept


Foreign Desk Report

NEW YORK: For the first time in United Nations’ 75-year history, world leaders will not come to New York this September for the annual session of UN General Assembly due to the coronavirus pandemic, the president of the 193-member assembly has said. In the first 10 days of the session, the leaders traditionally come face-to-face to debate key international issues on the assembly’s agenda. Last year, 146 heads of state/government, including Prime Minister Imran khan, participated.
“World leaders cannot come to New York because they cannot come as single individuals. A president doesn’t travel alone. We don’t expect, therefore, to have presidents here,” Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, the president, told a virtual news conference Monday.
But Tijjani Muhammad-Bande said that he hopes to announce in the next two weeks how the 193 heads of state and government will give their speeches on pressing local and world issues during the assembly’s High-level General Debate. “We cannot have them in person as we used to what happened in the last 74 years but it will happen,” Muhammad-Bande said of the annual event. The landmark 75th session of the UN General Assembly is set to begin on September 15 and the General Debate will open on September 22. U.N. Muhammad-Bande said Monday that by late September, “maybe a hundred or so” people might be allowed in the General Assembly chamber.