Press Releases

                                                                                                                      10 March 2004

    Secretary-General Praises “Strong and Invaluable” Partnership between Canada, UN at Ottawa Welcome Ceremony

    NEW YORK, 9 March (UN Headquarters) -- Following are Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s remarks at a welcome ceremony hosted by the Governor-General in Ottawa, 8 March:

    I am deeply moved by those kind words, and by this warm welcome.

    Nane and I always look forward to visiting Canada, even though we don’t come here often enough.

    Madam Governor-General, I had better watch what I say in reply to your gracious welcome, since Louise Fréchette is here with me!  But if I may be so presumptuous -- for me, almost as much as for Louise, coming to Canada is like coming home.

    There are many reasons.  I cannot claim to come from a cold climate, but there is nothing I love more than a landscape of mountains and clear lakes.

    Canada, as a truly diverse and multilingual society of Aboriginals, Francophones, Anglophones and immigrants from all over the world, forms a kind of United Nations of its own.

    You are born multilateralists, naturally adept at the give and take of international cooperation.  The partnership between Canada and the UN is strong and invaluable.

    Aussi suis-je impatient de discuter avec votre Premier Ministre, Paul Martin, et son gouvernement, de nombreuses questions comme la paix et la sécurité ou l’action que nous menons en faveur du développement et de l’environnement.

    C’est aussi un grand honneur pour moi d’être invité à prendre la parole devant les deux chambres du Parlement.  Je vois dans cette invitation un autre signe des liens étroits qui existent entre le peuple canadien et l’ONU, et j’attends beaucoup de la suite de ce séjour.

    Je vous remercie.  Thank you very much.

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