China-Xi Jinping-UN Photo:Cia Pak

In his first speech at the UN headquarters in New York, President Xi Jinping said on Monday his nation will provide $100 million in aid for the African Union in next 5 years to boost peace there by supporting the establishment of an African standby force with a capacity for crisis response.

The money for Africa will be part of a $1 billion “China-UN Peace and Development Fund” to support UN peacekeeping efforts around the world.

On the broad new UN development goals to end poverty and hunger by 2030, Mr Xi said his country’s investment would reach $12 billion over the next 15 years.smoke-stack-pollutions-Why_137-Flickrcc

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He also said China would cancel debts to the world’s least developed nations, including small island nations, reports the BBC.

“Looking around the world, the peace and development remain the two major themes of the times,” the Chinese leader said at the summit in New York. “We must keep hold of the key of the development. Only development can eliminate the causes of the conflicts.”

China made huge gains in lifting its own people out of poverty, and now is pledging to help Africa– and other poor nations elsewhere–to do the same.

The United Nations General Assembly wound up its 70th annual General Debate yesterday with Assembly President Mogens Lykketoft calling it a historic event crowned by the “truly seminal commitment” to achieving ambitious new development goals by 2030.

“As we commemorate the 70th anniversary [of the founding of the UN], it was fitting and reassuring that leaders recalled and reaffirmed the spirit and the principles of the Charter and confirmed their faith in the central role of UN in international cooperation,” he declared.

(UN Photos by Loey-Felipe and Cia Pak)

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