Bolivia: Annan praises peaceful elections, offers UN assistance

20 December 2005

Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who has closely followed developments in Bolivia ever since street protests led to the resignation of President Carlos Mesa earlier this year, today voiced satisfaction at Sunday’s peaceful elections and offered United Nations help in addressing the challenges that lie ahead.

“The Secretary-General reiterates his message calling on all Bolivians to support the new government and parliament and to take advantage of the opportunity offered by these elections to work together to reach political and economic agreements and promote stability and progress in the country,” a statement issued by Mr. Annan’s spokesman said.

“The period ahead will require compromise and consensus-building. The UN system stands ready to assist the new Government and the people of Bolivia in addressing the important challenges they face,” it concluded.

Last week Mr. Annan sent Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Angela Kane as a show of support for the elections. Since March, he has issued several statements urging Bolivians to resolve differences over national interests peacefully.

In June he sent Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs José Antonio Ocampo to assess how the UN could help the country as it tackled the political transition and economic issues after Supreme Court head Eduardo Rodriguez was sworn in as President following months of protests.

 

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