Obama’s U.N. Remarks Cover Economy, Mideast Peace

BY Larisa Epatko  September 23, 2010 at 2:47 PM EST

President Obama addressed the U.N. General Assembly on Thursday on a wide range of issues, including reinstating Iran’s need to demonstrate the peaceful intent of its nuclear program and calling for international support of Israeli and Palestinian peace efforts.

Watch his full speech here:

Excerpts from President Obama’s address:

U.S. Economic Efforts

“We are reforming our system of global finance, beginning with Wall Street reform here at home, so that a crisis like this never happens again. And we made the G20 the focal point for international coordination, because in a world where prosperity is more diffuse, we must broaden our circle of cooperation to include emerging economies — economies from every corner of the globe.”

Fighting Extremists

“While drawing down in Iraq, we have refocused on defeating al Qaeda and denying its affiliates a safe haven. In Afghanistan, the United States and our allies are pursuing a strategy to break the Taliban’s momentum and build the capacity of Afghanistan’s government and security forces, so that a transition to Afghan responsibility can begin next July. And from South Asia to the Horn of Africa, we are moving toward a more targeted approach — one that strengthens our partners and dismantles terrorist networks without deploying large American armies.”

Nonproliferation and Iran

“Now let me be clear once more: The United States and the international community seek a resolution to our differences with Iran, and the door remains open to diplomacy should Iran choose to walk through it. But the Iranian government must demonstrate a clear and credible commitment and confirm to the world the peaceful intent of its nuclear program.”

Mideast Peace

“This time, we should draw upon the teachings of tolerance that lie at the heart of three great religions that see Jerusalem’s soil as sacred. This time we should reach for what’s best within ourselves. If we do, when we come back here next year, we can have an agreement that will lead to a new member of the United Nations — an independent, sovereign state of Palestine, living in peace with Israel.”

Openness and Accountability

“It’s time for every member state to open its elections to international monitors and increase the U.N. Democracy Fund. It’s time to reinvigorate U.N. peacekeeping, so that missions have the resources necessary to succeed, and so atrocities like sexual violence are prevented and justice is enforced — because neither dignity nor democracy can thrive without basic security.”

Read his full remarks on the White House website.

On Thursday’s NewsHour, Margaret Warner reports from New York City on the highlights of the U.N. General Assembly meetings.