Apr
24
2007
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BLATTER PRAISES COOPERATION BETWEEN FIFA AND UN

BLATTER PRAISES COOPERATION BETWEEN FIFA AND UN

In a letter to Kofi Annan, who stepped down as a Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN) on 31 December 2006, FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter praised the Ghanian official’s achievements in international politics and diplomacy as well as his exceptional personality.
“As the President of FIFA, it is a great honor for me both personally and on behalf of FIFA to thank you for your endless dedication to the good of the nations on our planet,” wrote Blatter. “We all appreciated the principles of your action, the vision of your leadership and the humanity of your person.”
A diplomat and advocate, civil servant and CEO all in one, the Secretary-General of the United Nations is a symbol of United Nations ideals and a spokesman for the peoples of the world, in particular the poor and vulnerable. Annan was the first ever UN Secretary-General to visit FIFA headquarters. When he stopped over in Zurich on 24 January 2006, he was reciprocating the FIFA President’s visit to New York in June 1999, which marked the beginning of an era of close partnership between the UN and many of its bodies and agencies (such as UNICEF, ILO, WHO, and UNDP) with FIFA and its member associations in projects such as “Say Yes for Children”, “Red Card to Child Labor”, “Go Girls” and “Unite for Children, Unite for Peace”. In his letter to Annan, Blatter also praised the positive results of their intensive and successful cooperation.
Looking ahead to the 2010 FIFA World Cup TM in South Africa, Blatter stressed that the next three and half years represented a magnificent opportunity to use football as a catalyst to improve health and educational standards and to build peace in Africa and beyond. “The vision of a successful FIFA World Cup TM in Africa will make a major contribution to the fight against racism and against the marginalisation of the continent,” concluded Blatter in his letter.
The FIFA President is hoping that the fruitful cooperation with the United Nations will continue under the administration of new UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who took office on 1 January 2007.