- NAME: Kofi Annan
- OCCUPATION: Civil Servant
- BIRTH DATE: April 08, 1938 (Age: 75)
- EDUCATION: University of Science and Technology, Macalester College, Institute for Advanced International Studies in Geneva, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Kumasi, Ghana
- Full Name: Kofi Atta Annan
- ZODIAC SIGN: Aries
Best Known For
Kofi Annan is best known for his role as secretary-general of the United Nations.
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The United Nations Security Council recommended Annan to replace the previous secretary-general, Dr. Boutros Boutros-Ghali of Egypt, in later 1996. The General Assembly voted in his favor, and he began his first term as secretary-general on January 1,
Among Annan's most well-known accomplishments were his issuance of a five-point Call to Action in April 2001 to address the HIV/AIDS pandemic and his proposal to create a Global AIDS and Health Fund. He and the United Nations were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in December of 2001 "for their work for a better organized and more peaceful world."
Annan is also known for his opposition to the 2003 invasion of Iraq and to Iran's nuclear program. He told the BBC in September 2004 that the Iraq war did not conform to the U.N. charter and was illegal.
Annan retired on December 31, 2006. Several months prior, he gave a farewell speech to world leaders at U.N. headquarters in New York, outlining major problems with an unjust world economy and widespread contempt for human rights.
"[W]e are not only all responsible for each other's security," Annan said in his speech. "We are also, in some measure, responsible for each other's welfare. Global solidarity is both necessary and possible. It is necessary because without a measure of solidarity no society can be truly stable, and no one's prosperity truly secure."
Following his retirement, Annan returned to Ghana. He became involved with a number of organizations with a global focus. He was chosen to lead the formation of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, became a member of the Global Elders and was appointed president of the Global Humanitarian Forum in Geneva. In 2009, Annan joined a Columbia University program at the university’s School of International and Public Affairs.
In February 2012, Annan was appointed as the U.N.-Arab League envoy to Syria in an attempt to end the civil war taking place there. He developed a six-point plan for peace. He resigned from the position, citing intransigence of both the Syrian government and the rebels, as well as the Security Council's failure to create a peaceful resolution.
"As an envoy, I can't want peace more than the protagonists, more than the Security Council or the international community, for that matter," Annan said in a resignation speech on August 2, 2012.
"I had expected to go into Ghanaian politics," Annan once told Saga magazine, "retire to a farm at 60 and die in my bed at 80. It did not happen so. It's one of the things God does."
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