New York, 19 August 2003 (RFE/RL) -- UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan (pictured) has condemned the bombing of the UN headquarters in Baghdad as "an act of unprovoked and murderous violence." Annan spoke shortly after the UN Security Council called an urgent meeting in response to the bombing. He said he hopes those responsible for the attack will quickly be brought to justice.
Many other international leaders immediately joined in condemning the attack, which left at least 14 people dead and many others wounded.
U.S. President George W. Bush denounced the perpetrators as "enemies of the civilized world." Bush vowed that those involved in Iraq's reconstruction will not be intimidated by the attack, and that their efforts will continue.
"Iraq is on an irreversible course toward self-government and peace, and America and our friends in the United Nations will stand with the Iraqi people as they reclaim their nation and their future," Bush said.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the attack shows that the international community must become more heavily involved in helping restore order in Iraq.
Pakistani Ambassador to the UN Munir Akram said the attack shows that the UN needs to take greater security measures to protect its personnel, and to convince the Iraqi people that it is acting for their welfare.