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UPDATED: 17:52, July 05, 2005
African leaders resume discussions in Sirte summit
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African leaders resumed their discussions Tuesday in Sirte as the 5th African Union (AU) summit entered its second and last day.

Some 40 heads of state and government or representatives from the 53 AU member states are gathering in the Libyan port city of Sirte for the two-day summit.

On Monday the leaders held a closed session after the summit's inauguration, which focused on matters pertaining to the African peace and security council and efforts towards reconciliation, stability and security in some African states.

They also probed economic reports, the outcome of African trade conferences and the activities of the union's initiative for development, the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD), according to Egypt's MENA news agency.

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, while addressing the summit's opening session, urged African leaders to speed up development in order to fulfill the targets set by the UN Millennium Development Goals aiming at halving the 1 billion people living with extreme poverty by 2015.

The top UN official also called on the AU to play a leading role in stamping out conflicts on the continent and peacekeeping, saying "I commend the African Union for its leadership in tackling African security challenges."

The AU, modeled on the European Union, succeeded the Organization of African Unity in 2002 to adapt itself to the globalization trend and march toward peace and prosperity.

Source: Xinhua

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