Obama calls for new era of global engagement

US is taking steps towards a world without nuke weapons, says prez

Obama calls for new era of global engagement


Calling on the international community to take a larger role in handling challenges from climate change to peacemaking, Obama insisted, “This cannot be solely America’s endeavour.”
“Those who used to chastise America for acting alone in the world cannot now stand by and wait for America to solve the world’s problems alone,” he said in his speech on Wednesday morning before the UN General Assembly.
While working together as a global community to address challenges is a commonly shared ideal, it is not one that is being fulfilled, he said. “If we are honest with ourselves, we need to admit that we are not living up to that responsibility,” he said.

Obama’s call for greater cooperation among nations, in his first address to the UN General Assembly in his young presidency, comes as his administration tries to move forward with some of the world’s most pressing conflicts— peacemaking in the Middle East and the nuclear ambitions of Iran and North Korea. The US is also trying to gain additional support from its Nato allies for the war in Afghanistan.
In his address, Obama listed the actions his administration has taken to answer concerns that US has been acting unfairly and unilaterally: the law he signed to insure America does not torture, and his administration’s commitment to closing to prison at Guantanamo Bay. The US, he said, has renewed its commitment to the UN, agreeing to pay millions in back dues, and joining the organisation’s Human Rights Council.

The US, he said, is also taking steps towards a world without nuclear weapons, agreeing to further arms reductions with Russia, and is moving toward signing the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which will ban the testing of nuclear weapons. And America will take more such actions, he said.
“We have sought — in word and deed — a new era of engagement with the world,” he said. “Now is the time for all of us to take our share of responsibility for a global response to global challenges.”

“Consider the course that we are on if we fail to confront the status quo,” Obama added. “Extremists sowing terror in pockets of the world. Protracted conflicts that grind on and on. Genocide and mass atrocities. More and more nations with nuclear weapons. Melting ice caps and ravaged populations. Persistent poverty and pandemic disease. I say this not to sow fear, but to state a fact: the magnitude of our challenges has yet to be met by the measure of our action.”

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