War in Ukraine, absence of the Russian and Chinese presidents, Iranian nuclear… A 77th General Assembly of the United Nations under tension

The Heads of State and Government will follow one another on the United Nations podium, from Tuesday September 20 until Saturday September 24. This week is the highlight of the United Nations General Assembly, which takes place from September to December. However, each head of state or government, each representation freely has its own agenda.

>> Climate crisis, food, war in Ukraine… expected at the UN, Emmanuel Macron poses as a unifier in the face of international divisions

It is traditionally Brazil that opens the ball for these speeches. Jair Bolsonaro will therefore be the first to take the microphone, this Tuesday afternoon. A Brazilian president campaigning for his re-election, who therefore risks speaking from the perch of the United Nations at least as much to Brazilians as to his international counterparts.

This 77th UN General Assembly brings together this week 157 Heads of State or Government out of the 193 States represented at the United Nations, those who made the trip to New York. The most notable absences? Those of Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping of course! The Chinese and Russian leaders met on Thursday September 15, on the occasion of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Uzbekistan. They have chosen not to address the rest of the world even though the actions, in particular those of Russia with its war in Ukraine, are at the heart of certain imbalances, exacerbating the energy crisis or the world food crisis.

Another fixation abscess: Iran. Many will be watching President Ebrahim Raissi’s speech, scheduled for Wednesday, attentively, watching for the slightest inflection that could suggest that Iran is ready to resume nuclear negotiations. From this Tuesday, the Iranian president must also discuss this subject with his French counterpart, on the sidelines of the General Assembly.

In addition to his meeting with Ebrahim Raissi, Emmanuel Macron will have three other bilateral meetings, with the Pakistani, British and Lebanese heads of government, before addressing the General Assembly at 8 p.m. (French time) for his public speech.

Upstream, French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna, on Monday alone, conducted no less than eight formal or informal interviews with her European, Indian, Emirati, Chinese, Russian, Iraqi and Jordanian counterparts. This daily rhythm will be maintained until the end of the week for Catherine Colonna, until Wednesday evening for Emmanuel Macron. Last bilateral meeting scheduled for the French president, Wednesday afternoon, with Joe Biden.

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