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Dear Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon:
Building on the momentum initiated by the Swiss Parliamentarians' Open Letter to you, the European Parliament's strong support, the continuing efforts of the Inter-Parliamentary Union and Citizens for a United Nations Peoples' Assembly, we respectfully request that you convene a High Level Panel to determine the steps required for the establishment of a Peoples' Parliamentary Assembly within the United Nations Organization.
We trust that you will give this request careful consideration, as we are convinced that, to quote the Preamble to the UN Charter, "We the Peoples of the United Nations" must finally have an elected voice in this vital world organization.
Moreover, at this critical time when the United Nations is at a "fork in the road" as you state, a Peoples' Parliamentary Assembly could generate renewed interest and wide support from people around the world for a strong UN based upon the reforms you are proposing. We believe that such a Parliament is crucial to addressing the multitude of problems facing humanity in the 21st century.
Thank you for sending me the Citizens for a United Nations Peoples' Assembly's open letter and the accompanying signatures in support of your initiative.
In order to be truly effective, decisions taken by United Nations Member States at the 2005 World Summit will need the support of their peoples. That, I am sure, was one motive behind the decision of the President of the General Assembly to convene informal interactive hearings with non-governmental organizations on 23-24 June. The impending 58th Annual DPI/NGO Conference will provide a second opportunity for civil society discussions on prospective changes to the international architecture.
Both these events are examples of the seriousness with which the United Nations treats the views of civil society, and this, I believe, is a testimony in no small part to the ideas and aspirations to which you, and your colleagues and associates, have given voice.
Kofi A. Annan
Citizens for a United Nations People's Assembly
55 New Montgomery Street, Suite 224
San Francisco, CA 94105 USA