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Dr. Nafis Sadik, Secretary-General of the Conference then addressed the Plenary. She stated that the purpose of this session is to give the Conference Secretariat clear guidance and the mandate to draft the final Conference documents that will be the basis for PrepCom III negotiations. In terms of the broader context, Sadik commented on the positive fact that more and more countries are willing to address population issues openly within the context of national economic, social and political policies and priorities. She also referred to the fact that the Cairo Conference will contribute to both the Social Summit and the Women's Conference in 1995. Sadik praised the work of the expert group meetings as well as the regional conferences and noted the importance of new partnerships with NGOs. She closed by noting key concerns such as the centrality of the individual, greater investment in women and girls, the involvement of men in all aspects of population activities, and the need to involve women on an equal basis in local government and development. Sadik expressed hope that the Conference would adopt goals for the next 20 years on such issues as maternal and infant mortality, education for women and girls, gender equality and family planning.

Jean-Claude Milleron, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Information and Policy Analysis, stated the need to consider population issues not just in quantitative terms but in the overall development context. He referred to enhanced development as the only guarantee of peace and to the spatial dimension that has been neglected in analyses of development processes. He said that in the population arena, the spatial dimension emerges most directly in terms of "migration issues, issues of localization of people and activities, tensions between poles of growth and their hinterlands."

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