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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 September 2006, 09:35 GMT 10:35 UK
UN General Assembly at-a-glance
All you need to know about the 61st session of the United Nations General Assembly:


1100 EST (1500 GMT) US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Nato Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer host a meeting for Nato foreign ministers, on the sidelines of the General Assembly, to discuss issues including Afghanistan and Kosovo.

1100 EST (1500 GMT) Lebanese President Emile Lahoud addresses the UN General Assembly

1300 EST (1930 GMT) The UN Security Council meets to discuss a proposal by Arab leaders aimed at reviving the Middle East peace process.


Middle East conflict The stalled Middle East peace process is centre stage. Kofi Annan and the Middle East diplomatic quartet - the US, Russia, the EU and UN - will discuss how to revive negotiations. The UN Security Council will also hold talks.

Iran's nuclear ambitions US President George W Bush and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have already sparred over Tehran's nuclear enrichment programme - one of the big issues UN leaders will tackle.

Darfur stand-off The UN's response to continuing violence in Sudan's Darfur region has been highlighted as a key debate. Sudan has refused to allow a proposed 20,000-strong UN force into the country.

Security debate The ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan - and the implications for regional and global security - are likely to be a pressing issue.

Kosovo question The future status of Kosovo remains undecided. The breakaway Serbian province has been run by the UN since Nato forced Serbian troops out in 1999.

Annan's successor Behind-the-scenes manoeuvring over who will succeed Kofi Annan when he stands down as secretary general at the end of this year is hotting up. UN reform - including the question of whether the Security Council should be enlarged - is also a topic for debate.



Fiery attack Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez calls US President George W Bush "the devil" and describes the UN system in its present form as "worthless".

Darfur force extended The African Union (AU) decides to extend the mandate of its peacekeeping force in Darfur until the end of the year.

Palestinian boost The US and the three other members of the so-called quartet of Mid-East mediators endorse the idea of a Palestinian national unity government.


Emotional farewell Kofi Annan opens the 61st General Assembly - his last as secretary general - with a heartfelt plea for peace in the Middle East and an appeal for unity in combating global conflict and injustice.

US action call President George W Bush rejects criticism of US policy in the Middle East and urges Iran to give up its "nuclear weapons ambitions". He demands action to end violence in Sudan's Darfur region.

Iran defiance Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad accuses the US and UK of using the UN Security Council for their own ends and defends his nation's nuclear programme as peaceful.

Thai coup Thailand's Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra cancels his scheduled speech at the UN in New York as news emerges of a coup back home led by Thai military leaders.


Hugo Chavez waits to address the General Assembly
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez waits to deliver his "Devil" speech to the UN General Assembly


"The devil came here yesterday... It still smells of sulphur today."
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez

"The golden key of regime change is in the hands of... the people of Zimbabwe and it is very well guarded. No one from Washington or London has the right to that key."
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe

"Together we have pushed some big rocks to the top of the mountain, even if others have slipped from our grasp and rolled back."
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan

"The question needs to be asked: if the governments of the United States, or the United Kingdom - who are permanent members of the Security Council - commit aggression, occupation and violation of international law, which of the organs of the UN can hold them to account?"
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

"Extremists in your midst spread propaganda claiming that the West is engaged in a war against Islam. This propaganda is false and its purpose is to confuse you and justify acts of terror."
US President George W Bush, addressing Muslims in the Middle East

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