2 July 2001


Kofi Annan Said to Offer "Leadership with Vision and Wisdom"
Needed as United Nations Strives to Meet Challenges in Many Fields

NEW YORK, 29 June (UN Headquarters) -- This is the text of a statement today by the President of the General Assembly, Harri Holkeri (Finland), addressed to the Secretary-General upon his re-appointment to a second term:

In my capacity as President of the General Assembly, it is an honour and my personal pleasure to warmly congratulate you on your reappointment. The membership has demonstrated its strong support and trust for your second term in office, especially by taking such a timely decision on this matter. This decision by Member States is a clear testimony of continued support for your ideas and actions. We the members of the United Nations, would like to thank you for accepting these responsibilities and duties for the second time.

Last September, at the Millennium Summit, Member States committed themselves to ambitious principles and targets, such as halving poverty by 2015. In order to reach these goals, this organization needs leadership with vision and wisdom. There is a sense of urgency to implement the Millennium goals. Your continued commitment to an effectively functioning organization with a new management culture, which I salute, is one of the keys to success. At the Millennium Declaration, we have recognized our individual and shared responsibility to implement these goals at the national level.

The United Nations must also become more relevant to the world outside. We have happily noted your initiatives in this regard to build partnerships with other actors at the national and international level.

I should like to assure you, Your Excellency, of the support of Member States as you guide this organization during the next five years. I also wish to say that having been able to work with you has been a privilege and a pleasure. Please accept my personal wishes of good health and good luck to you and your family.

* *** *