Ban calls for peace, reconciliation during Timbuktu visitListen /
The Secretary-General has called for peace and reconciliation during his short visit to the legendary city of Timbuktu, in Mali, according to the UN Deputy Spokesperson.
Timbuktu's cultural heritage is at risk because of prolonged fighting in the area. A suicide attack in September killed two people, injured several others and caused substantial damage to the Djingareybar mosque, inscribed on the World Heritage list.
Farhan Haq on the Secretary-General's visit.
"He met there with community and religious leaders, as well as local authorities. He also visited the Djingareyber Mosque and the Ahmed Bab Institute of Higher Learning and Islamic Research. While in Timbuktu, he made a call for peace and reconciliation. He said that, for centuries, the treasures of the city have symbolized the richness of Mali's cultures and communities and that he hoped they would be an inspiration to tackle deep-rooted challenges and forge the peace that all Malians need and deserve." (25″)
The World Bank and the European Union, whose representatives are with the Secretary-General on the Sahel tour, have pledged more than $8 billion for the development of the region.
Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.