The Latest: Obama tells UN world less violent

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The Latest on the high-level U.N. General Assembly meetings (all times local):


President Barack Obama is telling world leaders that a paradox defines the world today as the world is by many measures less violent and more prosperous than ever before.

Yet, he says that people are losing trust in institutions, which makes governing more difficult. Obama says world leaders can choose to press forward with a better model of cooperation and integration, or they can retreat into a world that is sharply divided and ultimately in conflict.

Obama is addressing the United Nations for the final time as president.

Obama says the benefits of global integration need to be broadly shared. He says the global economy needs to work better for all people, not just those at the top.


9:40 a.m.

The top U.S. diplomat has urged Pakistan’s prime minister to prevent “all terrorists” from using the nation’s territory as safe havens.

The appeal from Secretary of State John Kerry to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif came as tensions escalated between Pakistan and India after suspected rebels killed 18 Indian soldiers in an attack on a military base in the disputed territory of Kashmir.

The State Department said Tuesday that Kerry met Sharif Monday on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly.

Kerry expressed “strong concern” with the recent violence in Kashmir, particularly Sunday’s attack, and called on all sides to reduce tensions.

He also urged restraint in nuclear weapons programs.

India on Tuesday accused Pakistan of firing at an Indian military position in Kashmir, which Pakistan denied.


9:16 a.m.

Taking the world stage for the last time as secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon unleashes years of pent-up anger at leaders who keep “feeding the war machine” in Syria, violate human rights and prevent aid deliveries to starving people.

The U.N. chief told leaders at Tuesday’s opening of General Assembly’s annual ministerial meeting that “powerful patrons” of both sides in the more than five-year Syrian conflict “have blood on their hands”

“Present in this hall today are representatives of governments that have ignored, facilitated, funded, participated in or even planned and carried out atrocities inflicted by all sides of the Syria conflict against Syrian civilians,” he said.

Ban said “many groups have killed innocent civilians — none more so than the government of Syria.”

And he accused South Sudan’s feuding leaders of betraying their people. He said “in too many places, we see leaders rewriting constitutions, manipulating elections and taking other desperate steps to cling to power.”


9:10 a.m.

Italian opera singer Andrea Bocelli kicks off the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly as world leaders convene to address most pressing global and regional issues.

Bocelli’s performance of Nessun Dorma on Monday earned a standing ovation from heads of state.


9:00 a.m.

U.N. officials say at least 20 countries are expected to formally join the Paris Agreement on climate change this week, greatly improving the pact’s chances of coming into force just a year after it was negotiated.

That’s considered a blistering pace in the world of international diplomacy, reflecting a sense of urgency in the fight against global warming and a desire to seal the deal before the Obama administration leaves office.

Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and Morocco are expected to hand over documents at the U.N. in New York on Wednesday to formally complete the ratification process. At least half a dozen small island nations including Papua New Guinea, Tonga and Kiribati will also follow suit.


8:45 a.m.

Standing before the United Nations for the last time as president, Barack Obama will reassure foreign leaders that the world is better equipped to tackle its challenges than at almost any point in history despite a cascade of harrowing crises that seem devoid of viable solutions.

Obama’s address marks his swan song on the international stage. He stepped into his role eight years ago with sky-high expectations and has struggled to deliver when it comes to solving global problems partially beyond America’s control.

Ben Rhodes, Obama’s deputy national security adviser, said the president was cognizant of the fact that bright spots such as economic growth and climate change cooperation are offset by the “great deal of unease” in the world, including Syria’s civil war and concerns about Russia’s aggression toward Ukraine.

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