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Preparations for General Assembly millennium summit move forward

Preparations for General Assembly millennium summit move forward

The General Assembly today set the stage for a summit-level commemoration of the United Nations sixtieth anniversary in September, when world leaders will take decisive action on achieving important goals for development, security and human rights.

Adopting a resolution on the format of the Assembly's sixtieth session – kicking off on 14 September with a three-day mid-term review of worldwide progress towards attaining the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – delegations welcomed Secretary General Kofi Annan's comprehensive report "In Larger Freedom," which will be the centre of the discussions.

Mr. Annan presented his agenda of "bold but achievable" reforms to the Assembly in late March as a five-year update on the UN Millennium Declaration, in which world leaders pledged to build a better and safer planet for the next century.

He called for action, "not more words," to fulfil pledges already made on a range of pressing issues, from greater investment in developing countries to steps to fight terrorism and collective action against genocide and ethnic cleansing. The plan also called for a major shake-up of key UN bodies, including possible enlargement of the Security Council and replacing the Geneva-based Commission on Human Rights with a Human Rights Council.

The measure adopted by the Assembly today decides that the High-Level Millennium review will run from 14 to 16 September, and follow the basic format and structure of the 2000 Millennium Summit: three days of plenary debate, comprising two meetings per day, and four round-table discussions, each covering the meeting's agenda.

Recognizing the importance of the Summit, the Assembly invited the Head of State or government of the country presiding over its fifty-ninth session, Gabon, and the Head of State or Government of the sixtieth session to preside as co-Chairs. The Assembly also decided that the Holy See and Palestine, in their capacities as observers, will participate in the summit.