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Michael Perch, Penn, USA
"The number one problem is the continuing crisis in the Middle East"
 real 28k

Riz Rahim, Chicago, USA
"The coming year will belong to an internet-driven shrinking world"
 real 28k

Fady Srour, Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
"Israel has to acknowledge the existence and legitimacy of Palestine"
 real 28k

Selva Appasawmy, Mauritius
"Will we see how unjust a world we live in?"
 real 28k

Kevin Hutchens, Stonehaven, Scotland
"I would like to see fresh commitment to the UN"
 real 28k

Ertooroo Chepni, Istanbul, Turkey
"America has chosen an electoral system that gives it stability"
 real 28k

Kaneez Hansa, Canada
"Renewable environmental resource management is important"
 real 28k

Aseem Srivastav, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
"The division between rich and poor nations is getting wider"
 real 28k

Deni Von Deventef, Amsterdam, Netherlands
"Political bravery is needed"
 real 28k

Thursday, 11 January, 2001, 11:48 GMT
The World in 2001

The beginning of a new year is a time to reflect and to predict what the new year might bring.

The year 2000 has left many of the burning issues unresolved: There's still no peace in the Middle East or in African countries like the Democratic Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone or Angola.

Floods and droughts and have led to renewed concerns about the impact of global warming.

World markets saw shares plunge, especially in the previously booming technology sector. Economic prospects for the new year seem much bleaker than a year ago.

Which of the world's problems needs the most urgent attention? And what do you think are the prospects for 2001?

BBC correspondents around the world have been taking your questions and comments live on World Service Radio's Talking Point ON AIR programme.

Select the link below to listen to Talking Point On Air

HAVE YOUR SAY

  • Your comments since the programme
  • Your comments during the programme
  • Your comments before the programme

    Your comments since the programme

    I do not ask for much in 2001. I just hope there will be a new Oasis album this year.
    Chris Haemmerli, Basle, Switzerland

    I am writing from the perspective of Africa. I hope the IMF, World Bank and other international donors will give debt relief to the continent.
    Sedinam Akpedonu, Accra, Ghana

    People should forget all the negativism. Work hard and live your lives. Also, take responsibility for what you do.
    Bill Findley, Canyon Country, CA, USA


    We need to get over trying to blame everybody else for our problems

    Russ Black, Los Angeles, CA, USA
    I believe that we need to get over trying to blame everybody else for our problems. We dig our own holes. We decide whether we jump into them or not.
    Russ Black, Los Angeles, CA, USA

    With George W. Bush as the new president, he will finally bring morality to this country and allow God back into people's lives by being an example of trust and humble leadership.
    Anthony Maldini, Cleveland, USA

    I believe that industrialised nations will move away from democracy and republics to governance by bureaucracy.
    Gary Eggers, North Idaho, USA

    The single biggest issue for 2001: When are Britain's licensing hours going to be extended?
    Stuggers, UK


    I am cautiously optimistic

    Michael Katter, Dallas, Texas, USA
    I am cautiously optimistic. We see a humanity that has survived an age that was defined by the existence of nuclear weapons. A people positioned as no others to realise the fruits of thousands of years of almost uninterrupted civilisation. Our collective knowledge and co-operative efforts prove to have the power to make what were once dreams a material reality. We need only be cautious as to what we dream about
    Michael Katter, Dallas, Texas, USA

    For the new millennium, I hope that every individual on earth will realise personal freedom and respect the personal freedom of others.
    Kapalee Viswanathan, Indian/ Australia

    A Space Odyssey?
    Kris, Kent, UK

    I hope that the Russian Empire frees itself from the "democrats" and lives in peace with itself. Great Eurasia has to unite! The new millennium has arrived. Let it not be the last millennium of humanity. Let EVERY tribe existing on earth greet the fourth millennium in happiness.
    Masha, St. Petersburg, Russia


    Population is the key to most of the world's problems

    A. Peters, Leicester
    Population is the key to most of the world's problems. Until we take action to reduce the world population war, famine and political unrest together with environmental problems will continue to get worse
    A. Peters, Leicester

    The most major problem affecting the world is AIDS. I hope the issue of this disease will come first before others.
    Gachuhi Wanjuku, Nairobi, Kenya

    All of us adults need to look at the children of the world. Are we doing the best we can to take care of them? The answer is clearly NO! We adults are too busy running after money, power etc, to really stop and listen to our children.
    Pirjo, Falls Church, Virginia, USA

    It will be a year of divide and conciliation for mutual benefits along the divisions! A year that will kick-off some serious thoughts. Especially, if the US economy slows down. Hoping for a better world with equal opportunity for everyone!
    Chakri Paila, Dallas, Texas USA

    I hope other developed countries will follow the example set by Norway and help end conflicts around the world.
    Murali, Montreal, Canada

    Your comments during the programme


    I would like India and Pakistan to overcome their bitterness

    Zeeshan Ali, Karachi/ Pakistan
    I would like to witness 2001 as a year in which the most unexpected things occur. I would like India and Pakistan to overcome their bitterness and be together. Kashmir should be declared a separate country peacefully as I don't want to experience another Palestine and Israel.
    Zeeshan Ali, Karachi/ Pakistan

    It will be the same as every other year. A few people trying their hardest in the face of greed and ignorance, but achieving little. It will continue like this until something drastic happens. Russia reminds me of the early 1920's in Germany. What is going to happen with all the desperation?
    M. Millett, Bristol, UK

    Time is passing by, the world won't change, so live your life and do your best by your fellow human beings.
    Paul, Glasgow, Scotand


    There must be some room for optimism here

    John Corbally, San Francisco, CA (From Birmingham, UK)
    There must be some room for optimism here! The internet will be key to the new era and offers the prospect for improving our current (and seemingly eternal) world problems. Most people on this planet are fair and honest; the freer flow and dissemination of accurate information and its inherent enlightening and educational elements will offer many positives. Whilst it must be acknowledged there are genuine concerns in respect to security, wide availability and the freedom for some to express heinous views also, it will prove more positive than negative.
    John Corbally, San Francisco, CA (From Birmingham, UK)

    In the year 2001 I'm hoping Somalia will end its ongoing civil war and agree to a kind of government that will take care of all the people.
    Mohamed Ibrahim, Seattle, WA

    Overpopulation will be an insurmountable problem in this new millennium. More than six billion people taxiing non-renewable sources of energy, raw materials and natural resources. As a consequence, flora, fauna and ecological systems obliteration will continue unabated. What will our ecological legacy leave generations to come? The technological fix is a myth. Maybe, it is time to seriously think about population control once more.
    Ivonne Fernandez, Bethel Park, Pa, USA


    I think we should get peace and human rights sorted out first

    Dennis Neo, Singapore
    I think we should get peace and human rights sorted out first. I firmly believe in putting the human being first and find it totally unacceptable that people can be talking about the internet, science and all the wonders of modern life, when some places do not even smell peace and many people are not even given basic human rights. It's pretty ironic that most people are willing to close a blind eye on such matters and focus on the "great" achievements of man, I think we are still rather primitive with regard to such matters.
    Dennis Neo, Singapore

    First World countries should continue to help Third World countries. We all breathe the same air.
    Alexandre Rotenberg, London, UK

    Please reassess the Western double standards of on the one hand talking of human rights and on the other accepting hordes of ill begotten gains from dubious so-called leaders of Third World and African states in particular. Isn't it time that such gains were returned back to the rightful poor suffering? Please make this your theme for the 2001.
    Abbas Ghloom, Kazakhstan

    Your comments before we went ON AIR


    I urge the leaders in these areas to strive for peace ahead of anything else

    Ali Round, Medway, England
    The crisis in the Middle East and the struggle for peace in Northern Ireland both stem from religious intolerance. If mankind is to progress, then we must brush aside such superficial hatreds and work together as a people. I urge the leaders in these areas to strive for peace ahead of anything else or else these conflicts will continue for more generations. Where there is conflict, there is fear, oppression and poverty.
    Ali Round, Medway, England

    I think in the year 2000 life will continue as it always has. Being that we are having the coldest winter on record in the US, I'm all for this global warming that all the chicken-littles are going on about and hope they can send more of it this way....I'm freezing!
    Dave, Detroit, USA

    The world is finished. Soon mankind will be extinct. The Earth cannot sustain us, and soon we will all be dead either through war, famine or a slow death through environmental destruction. It is too late for this planet. It is all over but the shouting and soon no one will be around to hear. How we survived the 20th century is a mystery. We shall not live out the 21st.
    John Jones, Dallas, Texas

    It seems that there is a tendency amongst the developed nations to ignore the problems that developing countries find themselves in, until these problems become threats to their own comfort. Let's not forget the Balkans and how important it is to have stability in this troublesome region of Europe. Crime, poverty and corruption reign here and those who suffer are not necessarily those who would like things to be the way they are.
    Tim, Albania

    I think people need to spend a little less time thinking about themselves and a lot more time thinking about others. It's not really fair to blame governments for problems whose roots lie in the fact that we have all become a lot more selfish and self-centred.
    James Milmine, Brighton, UK


    We need to leave the cities and spend the year meditating on what made us the way we are

    Jez, Sydney, Australia
    Selva Appasawmy, Mauritius - You are about the only one here with anything worth saying. Capitalism (greed), Industry (injury to the earth) and Individualism (lust, hatred) have brought the human race to its current degraded, hypocritical and vicious state. We need to leave (raze) the cities, and spend the year meditating on what made us the way we are and how to find a way to live in peace and harmony with each other and nature, without exploitation and suspicion.
    Jez, sydney, australia

    The problem of global warming will reach critical proportions in 2001 and beyond unless we can raise awareness of environmental issues in rapidly developing countries. States like China and India, with their vast populations and relentless thirst for wealth, must be helped and encouraged to develop in a more environmentally- friendly way.
    Joel Mapp, London, UK, currently in Vietnam

    I think that Western world underestimates the negative tendencies that take place in countries of the former Soviet Union. Living in Ukraine I can clearly feel a slow but definite turn back of the society to times of despotism, lies, and despair. Taking into consideration the size, population and geographical position of countries like Ukraine, Byelorussia (not speaking of Russia), I am sure these changes will have a long-lasting consequence on the general situation in the world.
    Ihor Hrytsiuk, Lviv, Ukraine


    What gives us the right to "fix" other people's problems when we can't even run our own country ?

    Simon, England
    2001 will continue just as the last 10 years until we learn to look at our own problems first before we stick our nose into other countries, a pathetic tactic used by politicians and media the world over to create an illusion of "we're all right here" and superiority over "third world " countries. England has poor people, not enough teachers, doctors or nurses, children suffering from malnutrition, violent crime. What gives us the right to "fix" other people's problems when we can't even run our own country ?
    Simon, England

    George W. Bush will be praised as the next Reagan for taking the helm of a leaderless nation. The regime in China will threaten Taiwan in a last-ditch effort to retain their capitalist/communist/totalitarian power. The main focus in the Middle East will shift from Israel to the oil pipelines coming out of former USSR republics and their threat to OPEC.. Scientists will continue the bitter debate over global warming with no conclusive evidence other than their own hot air increasing world temperatures.
    Joe Samson, New York City, USA

    I sincerely hope the criminal sanctions imposed on poor people of Iraq by the UN (read US) will finally be lifted in 2001!
    Samyak, Nepal

    I think all the nations should work on the peace deal in Israel. Little kids and innocent people are being killed which is a very sad thing.
    Tulo Bhale, Mn, USA


    We all complain about the politicians elected but overlook the systems that elect them

    Ertugrul Cepni, Istanbul, Turkey
    Hunger, poverty, conflicts, environment. These are all obvious problems that are awaiting solutions. The question should be: who can bring the solutions? Unless we bring to power the most suitable leaders and teams to govern our nations all we say and wish may be in vain. We all complain about the politicians elected but overlook the systems that elect them and compel them to behave the way they do. "One vote one person" may not be the best system for all the nations. Maybe a hybrid election system may produce better outcome for some countries especially those where poverty and illiteracy prevails.
    Ertugrul Cepni, Istanbul, Turkey

    I hope for Peace around the world as I do every year but as a journalist I fear I will be reporting from areas of conflict in Northern Ireland and the Middle East this year. However as Martha Gelhorn once commented there is no need for war man has the ability to reason without resorting to violence!
    Gerard Jefferson-Lewis, Dublin, Ireland

    I hope the Iranian People will support their President, and unite behind him to become a peaceful and poweful country.
    Hassan Paridar, Lakeside, U.S.A.

    There will be more religious violence around the world. Especially in the Middle East and South East Asian countries. The Western political leaders as usual will spend their time talking about peace, signing agreements, travelling to and fro, but everything will be in vain.
    Anton, Toronto, Canada


    The No. 1 problem the entire globe must focus on is the continuing crisis in the Middle East

    Michael Perch, King of Prussia, USA
    The No. 1 problem the entire globe must focus on is the continuing crisis in the Middle East. This more than anything has the ability to destabilize the entire planet, because it involves two faiths with such a turbulent and violent past with almost nothing in common. It is vital that some type of understanding be reached. Their problems affect all nations because religion is the basis for the conflict, with so much anger and resentment built up for centuries.
    Michael Perch, King of Prussia, USA

    Free trade is free for those who can afford it. Under WTO and free trade agreements a country has the right to impose economic sanctions if its products are being discriminated by another country. For example, Guatemala would in theory have the ability to prohibit American or EU imports if it had legitimate ground that they violate free trade agreements resulting in "unfair" competition. Everybody can see how much the US or the EU would be hurt if Guatemala cut US imports. Free trade can bring great benefits to all but the imbalance of power within WTO between richer and poorer countries will make the first richer and the latter poorer.
    Dimitrios Konstantakos, USA


    I would like to see a fresh commitment to the UN

    Kevin Hutchens, Scotland
    I would like to see a fresh commitment to the UN and its principles in this 50th anniversary year of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees. This would surely lead to a more just world for all and a greater respect for vulnerable refugees throughout the world.
    Kevin Hutchens, Scotland

    I am Iranian and hope that there will be peace in Iran and that we can get rid of old fashioned hard-liners who don't want the country to move forward.
    Omeed Mostofi, Coventry, UK

    To change our global pessimism and replace it with a vision of the world we want it to be.
    Tracy, Australia


    Let 2001 be the year where we correct and heal the wounds we pay for economic progress and development

    Steven Mun, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
    I think it's time for the people of the world to address the growing concern of the deteriorating global environment which has been highlighted since the start of the century yet, there is still no conclusive and comprehensive effort taken to address the issue. Let 2001 be the year where we correct and heal the wounds we pay for economic progress and development.
    Steven Mun, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

    We've been seeing a lot of "globalisation" in recent years. Hopefully, 2001 will see an increase in "global conscience" as well.
    Dave Hollick, Portsmouth, UK

    Hopefully, after the Florida court judgement, the tobacco business will go into a gradual decline. This will specially benefit developing countries and the poor who do not have the resources required to treat the resulting diseases.
    Balasubramaniam, Chennai, India

    The coming year will belong to biotechnology and an internet-driven shrinking world. Information technology will further revolutionise our way of life, which will bring in problems threatening individual privacy, private information and a need to protect all of that. I don't see a prompt end to violent political conflicts, regional disputes, hunger and poverty this year, BUT I would love to be proven wrong.
    Riz Rahim, Chicago, IL, USA


    Overall a poor year I think, with the Middle East and world finance taking centre stage

    Tim, Metz, France
    I hope that there can be a peace deal in the Middle East to suit everyone but the more I look at it the more apparent it is that an agreement will not be reached. I am worried about the possibility of victory in February for Ariel Sharon. The stock markets will also suffer again (but worse) this year. It will be interesting to watch the development of the Euro for Jan 2002. Overall a poor year I think, with the Middle East and world finance taking centre stage.
    Tim, Metz, France

    Regarding culture and politics, the over-reliance on US assistance by the developing countries should stop. It should not be a big deal whether the US president is Republican or Democrat. Regarding the environment: reduce global warming by stepping up on forestation, reducing disposal of industrial wastes into rivers and by the provision of better dumpsites.
    Kimani Michael, Nairobi, Kenya

    The global issue must be tolerance (or people's lack of it). In particular, learning to live with different cultures, different religions, or just different races. We will never have world peace until we learn to accept (and appreciate) differences. We'll never all be the same (luckily!), but we share the same planet and we'll need to get on with our neighbours if we are to thrive here. We'll achieve this through education and contact. Luckily we have a great tool for communication (Internet) and we need to exploit it more by finding more ways to deliver data to the poorer regions of the world. With that in place, think of how difficult it would be for dictators to "fool" their countrymen into participating in wars.
    Christopher Laird, Tokyo, Japan

    I sincerely hope for the right to defend myself against violence using whatever force I deem necessary. The right to raise my children to be upstanding citizens without do-gooders and liberals claiming I am somehow violating their rights. The right to live my life my way without being told I'm bigoted for whatever reason. And finally for the doomsayers to stick their heads back in the sand where they belong and shut up about global warming. In case you didn't notice, there's no evidence for it.
    John B, UK


    The Internet must remain outside the control of government

    Khan, UK
    We must ensure that we retain freedom of speech and resist the gradual encroachment of our liberty and privacy through censorship and vetting. Above all, the Internet must remain outside the control of government - China's actions against political uses of the Net is a warning to all of us not to let censorship slip in under the guise of 'protecting our children'. The Internet isn't a toy, and children shouldn't be playing with it.
    Khan, UK

    I agree with the statement of Mr. Zulfiqar Ali, Pakistan/USA and also love to wish and pray that may God bless us this year 2001 onwards with a peaceful life on Earth creating love not hate, peace not war.
    A.R.Shams, Hyderabad (Sindh) Pakistan

    What about trying forgiveness, understanding, compassion and love?
    Rosie Young, Sydney, Australia

    Sadly the world will continue to be an unequal and unfair world in 2001 with no justice for the 'little' people (the 'unpeople' as John Pilger calls them). Double standards will continue to be applied. Murder by cruise missile will be treated differently from murder by car bomb. The media empires of this world will continue their biased reporting to maintain the corporate rule of the world. Democracy will take another step closer to death. Arabs, Muslims and anyone else the West does not like will continue to die at the hands of Western state terror while some Westerners will die at the hands of non-Western terror groups. That's 2001 for you.
    Ramesh. K, Canberra, Australia

    At the start of the 21st century, I hope that every environmental talk in the world being discussed will be solved in the right direction after COP6 was over without any concrete deal to ease the tension of conflicts between developing and developed countries and also between poor and rich forest countries. I feel that the time might have come to induce new ideas into COP7 such as the right of CO2 absorption instead of emission. I wish all participants of this forum a prosperous future!
    Keiichiro Sugimura, Japan


    It's hard to ignore the potential danger of large-scale destructive conflict in the Middle East

    Jaimie Bradley, Seattle, USA
    It's hard to ignore the potential danger of large-scale destructive conflict in the Middle East. Will enough people in the region recognize that life and "the brotherhood of man" are holier than inanimate religious relics? Or at least that peaceful coexistence requires a new way of thinking? I hope so.
    Jaimie Bradley, Seattle, USA

    Having looked at most of the concerns and issues around the world, I believe that peace the main issue around the world. I strongly believe that we will come into contact with life from outer space. This will probably be the biggest find known to mankind.
    Jas Dobe, Slough, UK

    2001 will bring more spin from politicians, more broken promises, and more disempowerment of voters. Parliament will lose more of what little respect the public has left for it. There will be more direct action such as the fuel protests. People no longer want to vote - they want to be heard, and politicians are not listening.
    Gary Dring, Birmingham, UK

    The major issue for 2001 will continue to be the Middle East. Unfortunately so, as there are concerns in other areas that are equally important or more important. This includes the growing gap between the "haves" and "have-nots", the trafficking of humans, global warming and the conflicts in Indonesia, various countries in Africa and Kashmir amongst others.
    Sally , Melbourne, Australia


    The problems in South Asia need the most urgent attention in the years to come

    Birbal Chungkham, Manipur, India)
    The problems in South Asia need the most urgent attention in the years to come. India and Pakistan should resolve the Kashmir crisis and pave way for mutually beneficial economic co-operation instead of arms race so that both the countries release a major chunk of their defence budget to welfare programs. Similarly, India and China should create an atmosphere for a constructive engagement leaving aside political ideologies. Both countries should make the economy of North East India, one of the world's richest tropical regions, and that of south west China, a region desperately looking for an economic partnership, a complementary economy. This will help south west China realise its potential and also solve the problem of the world's longest insurgency, especially in Assam and Manipur which is due to economic underdevelopment.
    Birbal Chungkham, Manipur (India), currently in US

    The issue of inequality is one which continues to plague humanity and will do until there is a united and revolutionary initiative to change such a cold and threatening fact. Inequality in humanity causes the most pain and suffering and leads, directly or indirectly, to all other problems. It is inequality which has been at the top of the priority agenda, that has been for thousands of years and remains so now. On the day that everyone is free and equal in dignity and rights, opportunity and social position I shall look upon a world without problems. A leak must be blocked at its source, inequality is a fundamental leak in the plumbing of human society and it is equality which we must aim for in order to prevent all other problems, be they wars, racial conflict, poverty or disease. It is not simply an unrealistic goal, it concerns the future of humanity.
    Benj'min Mossop, London, UK


    Short-term goals and self-interest will predominate in 2001 as in every other year

    Phil Jeremy, London, UK
    The most urgent problem and one that should have been dealt with many years ago as well, is global warming. However the prospects for any action either at Government level or even by all but a few individuals and groups will be almost non-existent. Short-term goals and self-interest will predominate in 2001 as in every other year and so expect very little real movement in any peace talks in any of the present conflicts.
    Phil Jeremy, London, UK

    We will probably see a continuation of the mega-corp mergers we saw in 2000. Coupled with an economic slowdown, this will probably bring about more layoffs in the name of higher profits. With Bush at the helm of the United States, his outmoded and wrongheaded foreign policy (especially with respect to "National Missile Defence") may lead to the alienation and antagonising of other world powers and possibly a new arms race. No doubt just what Bush's corporate pals in the arms industry want.
    Pete, Ottawa, Canada


    Let us hope humankind wakes up from this hypnotic trance

    Selva Appasawmy, Mauritius
    In 2001, will the population of the world wake up from our deep hypnotic sleep? Will we see how unjust a world we live in and how the WTO and the ultra liberals want to accentuate this injustice even further? Will we come to realise that scientists and big corporations have taken firm control of this world, without the moral and ethical dimensions behind them? Let us hope humankind wakes up from this hypnotic trance and realise the truth of things and takes the road to freedom. Freedom from oppression and towards a more just world!
    Selva Appasawmy, Mauritius

    The return of Capital Punishment. Criminals being persecuted and not the victims. Police being given power back to stop and search people without being accused of racism. Parents being able to bring their kids up and discipline them the way they think is best without social workers and do-gooders butting in. Finally an end to the malevolent evil that is capitalism.
    Kev, England

    I believe that the restoration of democracy in the United States should be a prime goal in 2001. The archaic Electoral College must be removed, so that in future the person who wins the most votes, and thus the only real mandate, actually becomes the President!
    David Easley, Memphis, USA


    It would give the powerful countries an opportunity to prove that anti-racism is one of their policies

    Aimable, Kigali, Rwanda
    Due to the outcome of an open conflict between Israel and Palestine (with the possibility of drawing in other Arab states), I think that a solution to the problems of that region is a dire necessity for the world community at large. But after that, the conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo (not so democratic!) should be looked into. It would give the powerful countries an opportunity to prove that anti-racism is one of their policies. An opportunity to prove that in the 21st century lives of Africans also matter more than economic interests.
    Aimable, Kigali, Rwanda

    I think that the most burning issues in 2001 will be hunger and poverty in the world, the unrest that they will surely cause and what to do about decaying morals in the West. I don't expect much for 2001, with the prospect of a Republican do-nothing president.
    Jeff, USA

    A major issue in 2001 that needs to be addressed is the ongoing unrest in Southern Uruguay. The political situation there doesn't make the headlines much over here, but it will come to a head very soon, if the government cannot appease the farmers.
    Nick Hall, UK


    The major issue has to be the Middle East

    Andrew Reid, London, UK
    The major issue has to be the Middle East. Western leaders have spent the last decade focusing on the "evils" of Saddam Hussein (after funding him in the Iran-Iraq war!) whilst ignoring the greater problems of the region. George W. Bush must start to realise that overthrowing Saddam should not be the primary aim in the region, and that it may bring further destabilisation to an area that is already teetering on the brink.
    Andrew Reid, London, UK

    We must solve the urgent problem of declining morals worldwide. The internet and media generally is becoming saturated with pornography, placing our children at risk. We must put personal freedom aside to solve this issue before it becomes too widespread to deal with.
    Robert Kent, London, England

    In the year 2001, I believe that there are two important issues relating to the world today. One of them is, of course, the unrest in the Middle East, where thousands of people have been dying every year. The second most dangerous issue is Kashmir, which could spark a nuclear conflict anytime between India and Pakistan if the two sides do not resolve their differences. Of course there are a lot of other issues too, like the civil wars and famine in Africa and the sectarian violence in Indonisia...
    Zulfiqar Ali, Pakistan/ USA

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