President George W. Bush says he has found a "great partner" in U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan. The president and Mr. Annan met following Mr. Bush's speech to the U.N. General Assembly.
Topic number one was terrorism and the situation in Afghanistan. Mr. Bush and the secretary-general talked about how to bring stability to Afghanistan once the military action is over. Mr. Bush reiterated what he said in his speech to the General Assembly - that the United States plans to work closely with the United Nations on Afghan recovery.
On the Mideast conflict, Mr. Annan emphasized the priority that he and other world leaders attach to the issue. President Bush explained U.S. efforts to move the peace process forward and emphasized the need for political will on both sides.
Later, the president attended a luncheon hosted by the secretary-general. Mr. Bush praised Mr. Annan as a "great partner." "Mr. Secretary-General, I appreciate the many times we have spoken, particularly over the last two months," he said. "These have been difficult and challenging days for my nation and I have benefited from your wisdom, your vision, your resolve and optimism."
Mr. Bush congratulated Mr. Annan and the United Nations as this year's winners of the Nobel Peace Prize. The president said the United States is honored that for more than half a century, New York has served as the host city to the United Nations.