Queen addresses UN in New York

British monarch also places wreath at ground zero memorial.

queen speaks at UN 311 ap (photo credit: Associated Press)
queen speaks at UN 311 ap
(photo credit: Associated Press)
NEW YORK — Queen Elizabeth II on Tuesday spoke to the United Nations about stopping global dangers, then paid tribute to the victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks with a wreath at ground zero and a ceremony honoring British victims in her first visit to New York in more than 30 years.
The 84-year-old British monarch turned her eyes toward the future of the World Trade Center: new skyscrapers rising at what was once smoldering debris that had buried loved ones forever.
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"We are not here to reminisce," she told the world body earlier Tuesday. "In tomorrow's world, we must all work together as hard as ever if we are truly to be United Nations."
Earlier Tuesday, Elizabeth graced the lectern at the United Nations, where she urged the world body to spearhead an international response to global dangers, while promoting prosperity and dignity for the world's inhabitants.
"It has perhaps always been the case that the waging of peace is the hardest form of leadership of all," she said, while praising the UN for promoting peace and justice.
Speaking as queen of 16 UN member states and head of a commonwealth of 54 countries with a population of nearly 2 billion people, Elizabeth recalled the dramatic changes in the world since she last visited the United Nations in 1957, especially in science, technology and social attitudes.
"In my lifetime, the United Nations has moved from being a high-minded aspiration to being a real force for common good," Elizabeth told diplomats from the 192 UN member states. "That of itself has been a signal achievement."
But she also praised the UN's aims and values — promoting peace, security and justice; fighting hunger, poverty and disease; and protecting the rights and liberties of every citizen — which have endured.