Press Releases

         11 January 2005

    Secretary-General Calls Palestinian Poll a Significant Step in Historic Transition

    NEW YORK, 10 January (UN Headquarters) -- Following is a statement attributable to the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

    The Secretary-General welcomes the Palestinian Presidential election as a significant step in what is a historic democratic transition in the occupied Palestinian territory. He is especially pleased with reports indicating that the election was conducted in a politically competitive yet peaceful atmosphere.

    The Secretary-General congratulates President Mahmoud Abbas as the representative of the Palestinian people. He also congratulates the Palestinian Central Elections Commission for the organization of credible and genuine elections under challenging conditions.

    The commitment to democracy of the Palestinian people and their institutions is a strong foundation for President Abbas to build on. The Secretary-General is looking forward to working with the new President of the Palestinian Authority on the implementation of the Road Map and the achievement of an independent and viable Palestinian State.

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