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IMF, World Bank Delay Annual Meetings

Reposted from AP/LA Times: The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are postponing their annual meetings later this month because of security concerns following the terrorist attacks against the United States, officials said Friday.
IMF, World Bank Delay Annual Meetings


By MARTIN CRUTSINGER
AP Economics Writer

September 14 2001, 2:47 PM PDT

WASHINGTON -- The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are postponing their annual meetings later this month because of security concerns following the terrorist attacks against the United States, officials said Friday.

A formal announcement was expected Monday, said officials familiar with the discussions at the two institutions.

The meetings were set for Sept. 29-30. It is not certain when or if they will be rescheduled, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

"The fund and the bank have an agreement in principle that a postponement is warranted, but the executive boards have to take action," said one official.

Day-to-day operating policy for the agencies is set by separate 24-member executive boards.

"Because of the tragedy, everybody is focused on how we can help the police forces to make sure they are deployed to the best benefits of national security," World Bank spokeswoman Caroline Anstey said. "We don't want to draw police away from other business."

After Tuesday's attacks on New York's World Trade Center and the Pentagon, Police Chief Charles Ramsey of the District of Columbia urged the IMF and World Bank to cancel the meetings.

City police had counting on colleagues from other jurisdictions, including New York City, to help them deal with what they said could be as many as 100,000 protesters at the meetings.

The AFL-CIO and Friends of the Earth announced on Friday that they were pulling out of the planned demonstrations.

"For our part, the AFL-CIO will not, in any event, continue our planning to lead a peaceful mass protest at the meeting, nor will we participate in any such demonstration," AFL-CIO President John Sweeney said in a statement.

Friends of the Earth President Brent Blackwelder said, "We have chosen to demonstrate our commitment to peace and justice by not demonstrating."

Organizers at Mobilization for Global Justice, one of the umbrella groups for the protests, said they planned to meet Saturday to determine whether to go ahead with the demonstrations. An announcement was expected Monday.

___

On the Net:

World Bank: www.worldbank.org/
International Monetary Fund: www.imf.org/

Copyright 2001 Associated Press
 
 

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