Hopes and dreams of African people headline start of UN's Africa Week

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UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. UN Photo/Kim Haughton

Africans are demanding, and in fact, deserve a better future.

That's according to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who helped kick off the organization's annual Africa Week on Monday.

The week of events celebrate the continent's social, economic, political and environmental development.

Veronica Reeves has the story.

Africa Week is designed to showcase the many advancements taking place throughout Africa, while also bringing awareness to new and emerging challenges confronting African nations.

Speaking at the opening, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said successfully promoting a better Africa begins first and foremost with the aspirations of the African people.

"They seek to build lives with quality education and health care, decent jobs, a clean environment and tolerant, inclusive and democratic societies. They demand and deserve a future where guns are silenced throughout the continent and poverty and hunger have no place."

The role of regional and sub-regional organizations in establishing a free trade area on the continent was the focus of the first high-level meeting that took place as part of Africa Week.

Other events are planned on the need to address conflict throughout Africa, as well as the role of women in promoting peace and security.

Africa Week will conclude with a debate in the General Assembly focused on development across the continent.

Veronica Reeves, United Nations.

Duration: 1’05″

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