One of the world's longest-serving leaders and one of its newest will
take the stage at the United Nations General Assembly Thursday.
President Robert Mugabe and Pakistan's new president, Asif Ali Zardari,
will headline the third day of debate in New York.
Mugabe has governed Zimbabwe with a strong grip since 1980. He
recently agreed to relinquish some power to the opposition under
international pressure following controversial general elections.
Pakistani president took office earlier this month, and is already
faced with the challenge of controlling an increasingly violent
Other speakers Thursday at the General
Assembly include Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, Japanese Prime
Minister Taro Aso and Sudanese Vice President Ali Osman Mohamed Taha.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai told the forum that terrorism has spread
throughout South Asia like "wildfire." He said the international
community must do more to bolster Afghan security forces.
Premier Wen Jiabao focused on the global economic crisis, warning that
the problems are likely to worsen. He called on the international
community to work together on the issue.
In other speeches,
Israeli President Shimon Peres said his country is ready to negotiate
full peace with the Palestinians. For Cuba, First Vice President Jose
Ramon Machado blamed the global food crisis on the "wastefulness and
speculation" of a few countries in the industrialized North.
President Alvaro Uribe called for more international support to free
his country from what he called the "horrors" of drug trafficking,
terrorism and poverty.