Cheick Sidi Diarra

Cheick Sidi Diarra is the UN High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States. In January 2008, he was appointed by the Secretary-General as his Special Adviser on Africa. Mr. Diarra served as Permanent Representative of Mali to the UN and has over 25 years of experience in international relations and development. He was involved in Mali's national reconciliation efforts that put the country on the road to peace, democratic governance and development.

The overarching question is: what can the world 's Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Landlocked Developing Countries (LLDCs) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS) expect from the historic gathering in Rio de Janeiro this June?

When world leaders vowed at the United Nations Millennium Summit in September 2000 to "spare no effort to free our fellow men, women and children from the abject and dehumanizing conditions of extreme poverty", they recognized that special measures would be required for the weakest members of the international community to achieve this goal.