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General News of Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Source: GNA

Five new Ambassadors for Ghana

Accra, March 18, GNA - President John Agyekum Kufuor on Tuesday at the Osu Castle received the Letters of Credence of five new Ambassadors and High Commissioners appointed to the country.

They are Mr William Gordon Williams, High Commissioner of Australia; Mrs Ruchi Ghahashyarn, Indian High Commissioner; Mr Dragan Mraovic, Ambassador of Serbia; Mr Mohamed Habib Doutoun, Chadian Ambassador, and Mr Moshe Ram, Ambassador of Israel. President Kufuor expressed Ghana's desire to sustain and deepen its relations with Australia when Mr Williams called. Australia with its strong business presence particularly in the mining sector, he said, had been a reliable friend and development partner. He recalled the substantial relief support Australia gave to victims of the devastating floods that hit parts of the country last year.

Mr Williams pledged to work hard to build on the solid foundation of friendship between the two countries. At the turn of Mrs Ghahashyarn, President Kufuor publicly conveyed the country's appreciation to India for the tremendous assistance and push it was providing to Ghana's development efforts. The Presidential Complex, a significant landmark, being built at the Flagstaff House in Accra is being funded from a 30-million-dollar soft loan from India, 15-million dollars of which is a grant. There is also another 30-million dollars also with a grant component of 15 million dollars to support rural electrification. President Kufuor noted the growing Indian investment in the country. It is ranked second to United Kingdom (UK), as the biggest investor in Ghana.

Mrs Ghahashyarn said she felt very much at home and promised to do all she could to take the relationship between Ghana and her country to a higher level.

She praised President Kufuor for the dynamism and momentum he had brought to the relationship of the two countries. The Serbian Ambassador recounted the contribution made to Africa's development by former Yugoslavia of which, Serbia was part and said there would not be any shift in policy by his country toward the Continent.

He referred to what he described as "illegal secession" of Kosovo, a development, he said, could endanger peace not only in the Balkan but the world adding that it was the hope of his country that Africa would respect the territorial integrity of Serbia.

President Kufuor noted that the history of that part of the world was complicated and said Ghana would be guided by consultations through the United Nations (UN) system.

Ghana, he said, wished the best for Serbia to attain genuine peace and stability so that the two nations could relate positively to the mutual benefit of their peoples.

When the Chadian Ambassador took his turn, President Kufuor counselled Chad and Sudan to respect each other's sovereignty, secure their borders, and stop rebels from crossing over to cause confusion and dislocation of peoples in the two neighbouring countries. He said it was high time Africans found a way of living together. The Ambassador expressed the hope that the recent Dakar Agreement signed by his country with Sudan would be respected to help to bring lasting peace and security to that part of Africa.

The Israeli Ambassador, who would be based in Abuja, said his major mission would be to ensure that his country opened an Embassy in Ghana.

"This is long over due. We are going to see how we can come back to Accra." President Kufuor said there were a lot the two stood to benefit through improved relations. 18 March 08

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