Trump debuts at the UN

Trump debuts at the UN

By Vittorio Travan

American President has marked his first address to the delegates of the United Nations by encouraging major reforms.

Trump says to restore the power and accountability of the UN, reforms are essential to help it reach its full potential.

Talking to reporters before his speech, US President Trump said he is focused on,

 “making the UN great – not again”.

He also reinforced that this will be the main message of his address to the UN General Assembly.

Speaking to 120 delegates, President Trump was introduced by US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley.  She spoke about his desire to see the potential of the UN fulfilled.

 “[He] sees great potential, not just in the reform among members, but in the United Nations itself, ” she said to the delegates.

In his first address to the UN, President Trump toned down his critical opinion of the organisation in a speech that pushed an American first agenda.  During his campaign trial, Trump was highly critical of the UN and demanded a correction to the monetary contribution received from America. During his campaign he continually denounced the UN as “not a friend to democracy” and repeatedly referred to its incompetence and weakness.

Currently providing 22% of the biennial core budget which equates to $USD5.4 Billion and 28.5% of the peacekeeping budget, Trump used his speech to ensure there is greater accountability within the UN.

He called for a greater force to be accountable in providing world peace and to address the issue of the US overpaying the UN. In addressing the 120 delegates President Trump called for a greater collective contribution to peacekeeping and operational spending of the UN.

“We must ensure that no-one and no member state shoulders a disproportionate share of the burden and that’s militarily or financially,” he said.

This response comes as Trump pushes for greater return from investments towards the UN, and has demanded clearly defined metrics and goals to success. The move is also a result of the US wanting to reduce their financial contribution towards peacekeeping as they push for costs cuts and other countries to contribute more.

However the move could prove costly to the United Nations Refugee program with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi saying the US is vital to these programs.

“US aid is vital to what we do to support refugees around the world and to find solutions to their situations.”

The speech marked President Trump’s four day tour of the UN that will see him address the UN General Assembly and also conducted one on one meetings with world leaders.

Trump is expected to continue talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as the two leaders look to discuss the Iran nuclear deal, set to expire in September. The discussions will also focus on the continuing Israel and Palestine dispute in the Middle East.

Speaking below, President Trump is using the four day tour of the UN headquarters in New York to restore the global commitment to the UN. He wants to re-establish the bureaucracy of the UN and address the mismanagement in order to, “[make] the UN great”

 

 

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