UN session to close without Taliban and Myanmar speech

The UN General Assembly session in New York ended on Monday (27/9) but without speeches from the authorities in Afghanistan and Myanmar, one of the unusual things at this year’s diplomatic marathon. About 100 leaders are not afraid of the corona virus to meet in person.

Afghanistan’s long-serving UN representative against the Taliban gave a speech Monday after the group requested that its new foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, be allowed to speak instead.

The Taliban wrote a letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres last Monday, requesting that Muttaqi be allowed to “participate.”

The letter noted that Ghulam Isaczai, Afghanistan’s envoy to the United Nations under Ashraf Ghani, who was ousted last month, is “no longer representing” Afghanistan at the United Nations.

The application will be considered by a committee that includes the United States, Russia and China, but a UN official told the news agency AFP that the meeting did not take place.

A diplomat said the Taliban were late in sending their request, giving Isaczai, who is still recognized by the UN as Afghanistan’s envoy, to speak.

If he seizes the opportunity, he could demand strengthened sanctions against the Taliban, as he did at a Security Council meeting on September 9.

A series of speeches was scheduled to end this Monday with Afghanistan, Myanmar and Guinea, but the situation in Afghanistan and Myanmar provoked further intrigue until this last day (Monday).

A top UN diplomat told the news agency AFP that an “agreement” had been reached between the United States, Russia and China that prevented Myanmar’s ambassador to the United Nations from speaking. He is an outspoken supporter of the democracy movement which has rejected the junta’s order to step down.

Kyaw Moe Tun, who was elected by former leader Aung San Suu Kyi, is supported by the international community and has retained his seat at the United Nations after the February 1 military coup.

In May, the junta appointed a former general to replace him, but the United Nations has yet to approve the appointment.

Kyaw Moe Tun was the target of a recent conspiracy plot thwarted by the FBI. The gang planned to force him to resign or kill him if he refused. [lt/uh]

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