Tuesday, September 21, 2010

UNGA: Ahmadinejad addresses the UN General Assembly, blames capitalism for global economic disparities

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad addressed the United Nations General Assembly this morning and took the opportunity to lay the failures of the global economic system at the feet of capitalism and "big business." 

The Assembly is being attended by more than 140 heads-of-state and has been convened to focus on the global community's progress toward the Millennium Development Goals, which aim to halve global poverty by 2015 as well as meeting several quality of life reflective international development goals.

More from the Associated Press:

"[Ahmadinejad] took aim at capitalism and called for the overhaul of 'undemocratic and unjust' global decision-making bodies, which are dominated by the United States and other Western powers. While Ahmadinejad didn't single out any country, he said world leaders, thinkers and global reformers should 'spare no effort' to make practical plans for a new world order - reform of international economic and political institutions.
'It is my firm belief that in the new millennium, we need to revert to the divine mindset...based on the justice-seeking nature of mankind, and on the monotheistic world view...,' the Iranian leader said in a brief speech intertwining philosophy and religion with the current state of the world. 'Now that the discriminatory order of capitalism and the hegemonic approaches are facing defeat.'"
The Assembly today also featured addresses from Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the foreign ministers of Russia and Pakistan, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who espoused a neoliberal argument for more open markets in the developing world. 

Merkel's speech was strongly challenged by Oxfam, a leading aid organization, which slammed the Germans for not living up to expectations and "sidestepping their responsibility to make aid work by laying this at the door of the poorest countries."


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