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[Published: Sunday April 29 2007]


New York ,(APA) - The United Nations has launched a programme to develop the nationalleadership capacity in the worlds least developed countries (LDCs), a group ofStates on the lowest economic rung.
To be carried out in partnership with UN agencies, donor countries and civilsociety organizations, the programme aims to use methods that have provensuccessful in development and corporate worlds to strengthen the ability ofLDCs to address core development challenges, ranging from fighting HIV/AIDS toreducing poverty.
This is a very important initiative that will build the capacity of LDCs toaddress major development concerns in a sustainable manner by tapping theunique strengths of individuals, communities and organizations in thosecountries, said Anwarul K. Chowdhury, the High Representative for the LeastDeveloped Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and
Small Island Developing States .

Mr. Chowdhury said that the programme was a timely response to the observationmade during last years mid-term review of the Programme of Action for LDCs in Cotonou , Benin , where participants called for supportto LDCs in their efforts for leadership and capacity development with specialfocus on the young people and women.
The programme will initially be implemented in nine countries 
Cambodia , Djibouti , Ethiopia , Senegal , Somalia , Sudan , Uganda , Yemen and Zambia . Mr. Chowdhury said that it will beextended to 20 more by the end of the year, with the target of covering all ofthe 50 LDCs in the following year. (APA)

AB/APA/30 April2007---

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