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Annan in Paris for Africa-France Summit, meetings with African leaders

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The United Nations Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, is in Paris today, where he attended the Africa-France Summit and also met with African leaders to discuss top world issues.
After his address to the Summit this morning, in which he urged the international community to help Africa deal with the scourge of HIV/AIDS, the Secretary-General participated in the meeting's first working session on political partnership, security and peace, according to a UN spokesperson in New York.

Afterwards, the Secretary-General had a private meeting with President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa to discuss the situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) before participating in an afternoon working session of the Summit on partnership and development priorities.

The Secretary-General then met with President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt for discussions about Iraq. They talked about the need for Baghdad to accept its obligation to disarm and to work proactively with UN inspectors to get the job done urgently, and emphasized the Security Council's central role and the need for the inspectors to press ahead with their important work.

This evening, Mr. Annan is slated to meet with Presidents Mbeki, Joseph Kabila of the DRC and Paul Kagame of Rwanda for talks on the status of the DRC peace process.

He is then to attend a dinner hosted by French President Jacques Chirac in honour of the heads of delegation attending the Summit.