UN chief greets Chile's bicentenary independence

13:03, September 18, 2010      

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UN General-Secretary Ban Ki-moon on Friday hailed Chile's achievements in democracy, human rights and fulfillment of the Millennium Development Goals.

In a message sent to Chilean President Sebastian Pinera over the 200th anniversary of the country's independence, Ban wished the celebration would be an opportunity to further strengthen the country's achievements.

The Millennium Development Goals, endorsed by the UN in 2000, sets out eight targets ranging from halving extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS by 2015.

Calling Chile a founding member of the UN, he said, "It has supported the work of the UN for many years in all the aspects of our activities."

"Its contribution to the peacekeeping troops in Haiti and the humanitarian aid offered after an earthquake struck the Caribbean country, were an exemplary proof of world solidarity," Ban said.

The UN chief also praised Chile as one of the first countries hosting regional and world meetings on the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

"Chile helped to make reality this crucial step in our work in favor of the disarmament," he said.

The treaty with 107 signatories, which bans the use, production, transfer and stockpiling of these deadly weapons, enters into force on Aug. 1.

"I reaffirm our solidarity with the Chilean people, who are recovering with gallantry from the earthquake and I also salute the bravery of the 33 miners," he added, referring to an 8.8-magnitude earthquake that hit the country on Feb. 27 and the miners trapped in a cooper mine in northern Chile since Aug. 5.

"President Pinera receives and conveys to the Chilean people my best wishes and my most friendly congratulation on this memorable occasion," Ban said.

Source: Xinhua


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