Activities of Secretary-General in France, 1 September

15 September 2011

Activities of Secretary-General in France, 1 September

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, accompanied by Madam Ban Soon-taek, arrived in Paris from New York early on Thursday afternoon, 1 September.

He was to attend the “International Conference in Support of the New Libya” along with other world leaders.

His first meeting was with Nabil El-Arabi, Secretary-General of the League of Arab States.

He then spoke with Mustafa Abdel Jalil, Chairman of the National Transitional Council (NTC) of Libya, and Mahmoud Jibril, Head of the NTC Executive Committee.

Following a meeting with Jean Ping, Chairman of the African Union Commission, the Secretary-General travelled to the Elysée Palace to attend the Conference.  He was welcomed by President Nicolas Sarkozy of France.

He told Conference participants that the most immediate challenge is on the humanitarian front, with some 860,000 people having left the country since the onset of fighting in February.  He further explained that public services are under severe strain, with sporadic fighting continuing in the country’s south.  (See Press Release SG/SM/13765)

The Secretary-General also stressed that it will be essential to work closely with the Libyan leadership to identify their post-conflict needs and priorities.  Once those needs are identified, it will be essential to act in harmony and in a coordinated manner to ensure effective, collective action that reflects the guiding principles of national ownership, speed of response and effective coordination.

The Secretary-General participated in a joint press conference with President Sarkozy; the Chairman of the NTC, Mustafa Abdel Jalil; the Head of the NTC Executive Committee, Mahmoud Jibril; United Kingdom Prime Minister David Cameron; and Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Amir of Qatar.  The Secretary-General reiterated that medicine, food, fuel and water, particularly, are in short supply.  He said that he had asked his Special Adviser for Post-Conflict Planning, Ian Martin, to travel to Tripoli immediately to accelerate preparations for the establishment of an initial United Nations support mission that “reflects the needs and priorities of the Libyan people and transitional authorities”.

Mr. Ban met with Kim Sung-Hwan, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade of the Republic of Korea, before departing Paris late Thursday night on a flight to Australia.

For information media. Not an official record.