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They said it: Leaders at the UN, in their own words

Seychelles President Danny Faure addresses the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2019. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Lots of leaders saying lots of things about lots of topics — topics that matter to them, to their regions, to the world.

That’s what the speechmaking at the U.N. General Assembly invariably produces each year. And each year, certain enormous topics and certain louder voices dominate.

Here, The Associated Press takes the opposite approach and spotlights some thoughts you might not have heard — the voices of leaders speaking at the United Nations who might not have captured the headlines and the airtime on Wednesday, the second day of 2019 debate.

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“We must ensure that nobody has to choose between sending her daughter to school and sending her to work.”

— Edgar Lungu, president of Zambia

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“The peoples of the world have seen the movement of globalization nurture in them this common dream of seeing the Earth become a genuine global village. But, alas, we have never seen so many walls and barriers thrown up.”

— Faustin Archange Touadera, president of the Central African Republic

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“Multilateralism is nothing but showing compassion for the fate of others.”

— Kersti Kaljulaid, president of Estonia

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“More than most, island nations must have faith in the multilateral international order. We are by nature isolated and by design, our livelihoods are tied to the rest of the world. We rely heavily on this premise as well as on the actions or inactions of others for our very survival.”

— Danny Faure, president of Seychelles

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“All of you are coffee drinkers around the world. I want to ask all of you a question: If you would dare ask those who sell that cup of coffee to you whether they’re paying a fair price to the producers, would you ask that question? Would you even consider it? Think about it. Think about it. Because I am certain that if the answer is yes, that would be very powerful. It would be very powerful because it could change the lives of some 120 million families of coffee producers around the world.”

— Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández, whose coffee-growing country is contending with a drop in its harvest that he attributes to both low global prices and climate change