A week-long conference organised by the United Nations, has opened in Paris in an attempt to speed up moves towards free elections and future independence for Namibia (South West Africa).
1. GV UNESCO building in Paris. 0.05
2. SV Poster 'Namibia' 0.09
3. TOP VIEW Delegates in conference hall, and U.N. Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar and other officials taking seats at rostrum. (2 SHOTS) 0.21
4. SV ZOOM INTO CU SWAPO president, Sam Nujoma. 0.26
5. SVs Delegates including those from Kenya, China, Angola, Botswana and South West Africa People Organisation (SWAPO), PLO and Guatemala. (6 SHOTS) 0.53
6. GV ZOOM INTO SV Director General of UNESCO Amadou Mahtar M'Bow, speaking. (French SOT) 1.33
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: PARIS, FRANCE
A week-long conference organised by the United Nations, has opened in Paris in an attempt to speed up moves towards free elections and future independence for Namibia (South West Africa). The U.N.'s General Assembly called the meeting in December because of what it saw as the failure of South Africa, which has ruled the area in defiance of world opinion since 1946, to implement U.N. independence resolutions for Namibia. Delegates arrived from all over the world for the opening session on April 25, also attended by U.N. Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar. South Africa sent no representative, in protest at the presence of Mr. Sam Nujoma, president of the South West Africa Peoples Organisation (SWAPO). The five members of the Western Contact Group, set up to exert economic and diplomatic pressure on South Africa - the United States, Canada, Britain, West Germany and France - sent observers. One of the main stumbling blocks to a settlement has been the insistence of the United States that there can be no deal on Namibia until the estimated 20,000 Cuban troops in neighbouring Angola are withdrawn. SWAPO's observer at the U.N., Theo-ben Gurirab, said the linking of the two issues served only to aid South Africa in its delaying tactics. France's External Affairs Minister, Claude Cheysson, said that the time for peace had come, and that he could no longer accept the linking issue being placed in the way of independence for Namibia. In his speech, the director-general of UNESCO (United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organisation), Amadou Mahtar M'Bow, said that, as in the Second World War, the right of people to self-determination and freedom now was paramount.
Source: REUTERS - FREDERIC FABRE