Human Rights, democracy

23 April 2007, Doha

Remarks to the Seventh Forum on Democracy, Development and Free Trade, Qatar

Your Highness, [Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani], President Halonen, [of Finland], Mr. Straw, [Leader of the House of Commons, United Kingdom], Mr. Lahoud, [President of Lebanon], Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am delighted at this opportunity to address the Seventh Forum on Democracy, Development and Free Trade.

The name of this beautiful city where we are gathered is already associated in the minds of millions with the idea of free trade.

08 March 2007, UN Headquarters

Remarks at the International Women's Day inter-agency event on ending impunity for violence against women and girls

I am happy to be with you to celebrate International Women's Day -- my first as Secretary-General.  I hope you will all come to know me as a firm ally in the cause of gender equality and the empowerment of women.

On this day, let me add my voice to the tributes to Ms. Angela King -- a great champion of women's rights, and an inspiration to women and men everywhere.  Let us resolve to build on her legacy.

06 March 2007, General Assembly

Remarks at the informal General Assembly debate on gender equality and the empowerment of women

I am honoured to be with you for this debate on a crucial subject, two days before International Women's Day.

Achieving gender equality and empowering women is a goal in itself.  It is also a condition for building healthier, better educated, more peaceful and more prosperous societies.

When women are fully empowered and engaged, all of society benefits.  Only in this way can we successfully take on the enormous challenges confronting our world -- from conflict resolution and peacebuilding to fighting AIDS and reaching all the other Millennium Development Goals.

02 March 2007, New York

Remarks at the opening of the exhibition “Lest We Forget -- The Triumph over Slavery”

I thank all the friends and partners who were involved in making this exhibition possible.  The Governments of the Caribbean Community, the Government of India, and the Schomburg Centre for Research in Black Culture have produced a moving and fascinating show.  I am proud of the United Nations' contributions to this effort.

27 February 2007, UN Headquarters

Remarks at the opening of the 2007 session of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People

Allow me to congratulate you and your colleagues in the Bureau on your unanimous election to the leadership of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.

As we know only too well, the path to a peaceful solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict has been filled with obstacles, frustration and tragedy.  Over the years, many thousands of innocent lives have been lost or shattered.  Hope has been episodic at best.  Far more often, despair has been the norm.

27 January 2007, Kinshasa

Address to the National Assembly of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in Kinshasa on 27 January

I would like first of all to express, on my personal behalf and on behalf of the United Nations, my sincerest congratulations on your historic election to the National Assembly of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. I would also like to tell you how pleased and honoured I am to speak before you at this crucial time in the history of your country.

08 December 2006, Time Warner Center

Urging end to impunity, Annan sets forth ideas to bolster UN efforts to protect human rights

My dear friends,

Thank you all for being here. I could not ask for better company, on the last International Human Rights Day of my time in office, than this group of courageous human rights leaders from around the world.

07 April 2004, Geneva

Address by Kofi Annan to the Commission on Human Rights

Following is the text of the address by Secretary-General Kofi Annan to the Commission on Human Rights in Geneva:

It is good that we have observed those minutes of silence together.

We must never forget our collective failure to protect at least 800,000 defenceless men, women and children who perished in Rwanda 10 years ago.

Such crimes cannot be reversed.

Such failures cannot be repaired.

The dead cannot be brought back to life.

So what can we do?

19 June 2001, Oxford

Cyril Foster Lecture, "Why Democracy Is an International Issue", by Secretary-General Kofi Annan

Thank you very much, Vice-Chancellor, for that most generous introduction.

It is a very great pleasure for me to be back in Oxford, and an even greater honour to be asked to give this Lecture, as the official guest of the University.

15 June 1998, Rome

Secretary-General Opens United Nations Diplomatic Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court

I have the honour to declare open this United Nations Diplomatic Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court.

I wish to acknowledge the generosity of the Italian Government, which is hosting this Conference, as it has done for other landmark United Nations conferences in the past, and to express my appreciation of the strong support given by Italy to the United Nations and its activities in general. We are particularly honoured by the presence of President Oscar Luigi Scalfaro with us today.