United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon left the climate change conference under way in Qatar on Wednesday, 5 December 2012, to travel to Kuwait, where he met with the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah. The Secretary-General acknowledged the important role played by Kuwait in supporting the work of the United Nations and the international community in the region.
The Secretary-General and the Emir, in a meeting attended by the Prime Minister of Kuwait, also discussed a wide range of regional issues, ranging from prospects for peace in the Middle East and the ongoing crisis in Syria.
The Secretary-General reiterated his commitment to ensuring that Iraq fulfils all its outstanding obligations pertaining to Kuwait. He said that he believed there was a historic opportunity for Iraq and Kuwait to usher in a new era of cooperation.
That evening, after attending a dinner hosted by the Kuwaiti Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Sheikh Sabah Khaled al-Hamad al-Sabah, the Secretary-General spoke to the press, saying that he had come to the country to strengthen the partnership between the United Nations and Kuwait, and to demonstrate his commitment to the normalization of relations between Kuwait and Iraq.
While in Kuwait, the Secretary-General also met with Abdullah al-Matouq, Humanitarian Envoy for Kuwait and Chairman of the International Islamic Charitable Organization.
The following morning, Mr. Ban left Kuwait for Iraq to continue his discussions with the leaders of both countries on how their relationship could be normalized.