Press Statement

22 September 2012

President Zuma leads South African delegation to the UN General Assembly

His Excellency President Jacob Zuma is scheduled to lead a South African delegation to the 67th Session of the annual United Nations General Assembly (UNGA67).

The theme for General Debate is: “Bringing about Adjustment or Settlement of International Disputes of Situations by Peaceful Means”.

His Excellency, Mr. Vuc Jeremić of the Republic of Serbia, will be the President of the UNGA67. President Zuma is scheduled to address the General Assembly on 25 September 2012, the first day of the General Debate, during the afternoon session.

Underpinning its participation at the UNGA67 is South Africa’s strong support for the reform of the UN, specifically the Security Council.  Reform will strengthen the UN as a democratic, accountable and representative body, which is responsive to the needs of all its members.

With regard to the promotion of the African Agenda through peace, security and development, the Secretary-General of the UN will convene a number of high-level events including on the Sahel Region, Somalia, the Eastern DRC and the situation between Sudan and South-Sudan.

Other High-Level meetings that will take place on the margins of UNGA67, include the Rule of Law at International and National Levels; Access to Justice for Women, which South Africa will co-host with Finland and the Secretary-General's Global Initiative on Education, to which President Zuma was invited to speak on behalf of developing countries.

On the Middle East, the Security Council will hold a Ministerial debate focusing on cooperation with the League of Arab States.  In addition, following on the application during UNGA 66 by the Palestinian National Authority for UN Membership resulting in a deadlock in the Security Council, the League of Arab States has agreed to promote the Palestinian cause in the 67th Session of the General Assembly by supporting Palestine’s forthcoming application for enhanced status in the UN as an Observer State.  South Africa will support the Palestinian request.

On the Millennium Development Goals, South Africa believes that many of the MDG targets remain achievable, but the international community must remain cognisant of the impact that recent global economic crises have had on the ability of developing countries to achieve the MDGs, with some targets becoming more difficult to achieve.

President Zuma will be supported by the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ms Maite Nkoana Mashabane.

Enquiries: Mr Clayson Monyela, Spokesperson for the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, +27 82 884 5974

Issued by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation OR Tambo Building

460 Soutpansberg Road





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