President takes front row seat at Pope’s address

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ZIMBABWE – President Mugabe yesterday took his place front and centre among other world leaders in the General Assembly Hall at the United Nations for Pope Francis’ historic address at the opening of the Summit for the Adoption of the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

The first Latin American leader of the world’s 1,2 billion Roman Catholics is on his first visit to the United States, and has been drawing massive crowds and congregations when he moves or conducts a mass.

Yesterday, he spoke on a wide-range of issues, including drug trafficking, climate change and the environment, nuclear proliferation and socio-economic inequality.

At the time of writing, Heads of State and Government and/or their representatives had started their addresses to the gathering.

African Union Chair President Mugabe was scheduled to address the Summit for Adoption of the Post-2015 Development Agenda last night, and then the General Assembly on Monday.

President Mugabe, who is accompanied by First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe, is leading Zimbabwe’s delegation to the Summit for the Adoption of a Post-2015 Development Agenda and the 70th Session of the UN General Assembly.

Members of the delegation include ministers Simbarashe Mumbengegwi (Foreign Affairs) and David Parirenyatwa (Health and Child Care, and other senior Government officials.

World leaders will at the Post-2015 Development Agenda Summit adopt 17 Sustainable Development Goals (2016-2030) as the successor global initiative to the Millennium Development Goals (2000-2015).

The 70th Session of the General Assembly opened on September 15 with Mr Mogens Lykketof of Denmark presiding.

The theme for the General Debate is “The UN at 70: The Road for Peace, Security and Human Rights”.

High-level engagements started on September 25 and will run through to October 3.

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