Biden will ship the primary speech of the UN Basic Meeting as President on September 21

The United Nations Headquarters in New York.

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President Joe Biden will deliver his first speech to the United Nations General Assembly since taking office next week, the White House said on Monday.

Biden will travel to New York City, where the UN headquarters are located, on Tuesday, September 21.

A year earlier, then-President Donald Trump’s last speech was given virtually in front of the international institution when the coronavirus pandemic raged in the absence of a viable vaccine.

Trump, downplaying the dangers of the virus in the US, bragged about his administration’s efforts to respond to the pandemic and accused China of “unleashing this plague on the world.”

Biden’s first speech on the Greens lectern will be at an entirely different stage of the pandemic: Several vaccines are now widely available in the U.S., and nearly 179 million Americans have been fully vaccinated against Covid, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

However, due to the highly contagious Delta variant, Covid remains a central challenge for the USA and the world. More than 4.6 million people have died of Covid and more than 225 million infected worldwide.

While 42% of the world’s population received at least one dose of a Covid vaccine, less than 2% of people in low-income countries received at least one dose, according to Oxford University.

The World Health Organization has criticized rich nations for hoarding vaccines and other health supplies, languishing poor countries, and fueling Covid outbreaks around the world.

Biden’s White House has also come under fire for its handling of the troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, a chaotic and deadly process that has sparked criticism and concern even among its allies in the US and internationally.

When American troops were about to leave Afghanistan, the Taliban swept through the country, leading to the collapse of the US-backed government. Gaining ground much faster than the US expected, Islamist militants quickly captured the capital, Kabul, where thousands had gathered in desperate hopes of the country’s evacuation.

Thirteen US soldiers and dozens more were killed in a suicide bombing near Kabul airport a few days before the withdrawal was complete.

In total, the US and its allies have displaced more than 124,000 people, including 6,000 US citizens, from Afghanistan, the State Department said last week. The exact number of US-affiliated Afghans evacuated remains unclear.

The 76th ordinary session of the UN General Assembly will convene starting Tuesday at 3 p.m. ET a week before Biden’s speech.

The White House announced the US representatives for the meeting on Monday afternoon. They are:

  • Tom Carnahan, a St. Louis, Missouri based developer and renewable energy attorney
  • Sim Farar, chairman of the US Advisory Committee on Public Diplomacy
  • Rep. French Hill, R-Ark.
  • Representative Barbara Lee, D-Calif.

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