United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, accompanied by Madam Ban Soon-taek, arrived in the Republic of Korea on the evening of Saturday, 11 August, after a flight from New York which left on Friday afternoon.
On Sunday morning, the Secretary-General travelled from Seoul to the southern city of Yeosu, venue for the 2012 Expo. He first addressed a UNESCO Youth Forum. (See Press ReleasesSG/SM/14456 and SG/SM/14458.) He also held talks with Prime Minister Kim Hwang-sik.
The Secretary-General toured the United Nations Pavilion and the Korean Pavilion at the Expo and addressed an international conference marking the thirtieth anniversary of the opening for signature of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. At that event, the Secretary-General launched the United Nations Oceans Compact, which aims to better coordinate international efforts to conserve the world’s oceans. (See Press Release SG/SM/14457.)
The Secretary-General later attended a Model United Nations conference and attended the Expo’s closing ceremony and performance.
Early on Monday, 13 August, the Secretary-General flew back to Seoul, where he held talks with Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan and attended the launch at the Foreign Ministry of the Development Alliance Korea, which is aimed at coordinating development assistance efforts in the Republic of Korea.
He later spoke at the closing session of the World Congress of Global Partnership for Young Women at Duksung Women’s University. (See Press Release SG/SM/14460.)
The Secretary-General also visited and spoke at Seoul National University, which opened a Global Health Centre.
On the morning of Tuesday, 14 August, he met with the Republic of Korea’s Global Compact Network, which brings together business leaders in support of the work of the United Nations, including on sustainable development, the Millennium Development Goals and corporate social responsibility.
The Secretary-General also visited the national headquarters of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and met a number of officials, children and goodwill ambassadors. He praised UNICEF Korea for its strong fundraising and advocacy work, and recalled the role of UNICEF in his own country’s recovery after the Korean War.
The Secretary-General visited the National Assembly to meet a wide range of parliamentarians active in supporting the Millennium Development Goals. He also held talks with the Speaker of the National Assembly, Kang Chang-Hee.
That afternoon, the Secretary-General, accompanied by Madam Ban, flew to Jakarta for an overnight stop on the way to Timor-Leste, where he arrived around midday on Wednesday, 15 August.