“I had a very good discussion with the President,” Mr. Annan told reporters following the meeting. “We talked about Iraq, Afghanistan, African-Chinese cooperation and the President’s visit to Africa, where he will be heading from France.”The two leaders also covered “UN reform, and China’s role in the UN and in international affairs,” the Secretary-General added.He said President Hu expressed strong support for the UN, “the work we do and the need to adapt it and make it stronger.”Mr. Annan also accepted the President’s invitation to China and asked him to attend the General Assembly this year.The Secretary-General then traveled to Brussels where he held talks with several senior European Union (EU) officials and Foreign Minister Brian Cowen of Ireland, which currently holds the EU Presidency.He first met one-on-one with European Commission President Romano Prodi, and then with the EU College of Commissioners for an exchange on the EU’s relations with the UN, UN reform, the Doha round of trade negotiations, the fight against AIDS and a number of European matters.Over a working lunch, they discussed migration – the subject of a major speech that the Secretary-General is scheduled to deliver tomorrow – as well as Cyprus, Iraq, the Middle East, Iran, Afghanistan and other conflict zones.Speaking to the press later, Mr. Annan praised the EU’s belief in effective multilateralism and its decision to support his panel of eminent persons that will look at the new threats and challenges facing the world and how to devise a collective response.Asked if he saw evidence of a change in the security situation in Iraq, from where he withdrew most international staff after August’s terror bombing of the UN’s Baghdad headquarters, he replied: “Let me be quite honest and clear. We are still concerned about security… We are preparing ourselves to be able to go back, but security will be determinant.”Later today, Mr. Annan will meet with Javier Solana, EU High Representative for Common and Security Policy, and in the evening, he is scheduled to attend a dinner hosted in his honor by Chris Patten, an EU commissioner.
redevgml October 6, 2019 admin