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UN Cuts Budget

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (File)
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (File)

The U.N. General Assembly has approved a 5-percent cut in the U.N.'s budget for the next two years, marking only the second time the budget has shrunk in 50 years.

Saturday's action by the General Assembly means the current $5.41 billion 2-year budget drops to $5.15 billion for 2012 and 2013.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon applauded the General Assembly's willingness to make the austerity steps saying, "Government and people everywhere are struggling." He said it is imperative to "make the most" of available resources and continue fulfilling the world body's mandate.

Ban had already proposed some austerity measures, including cutting travel expenses, to make better use of the resources of the 193 member nations. He also promised the U.N. member nations will get the maximum use out of the resources and fulfill mandates "in full with efficiency."

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.