Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon arrived in Vienna on the morning of Tuesday, 26 February, after an overnight flight from Abu Dhabi via Frankfurt. He was joined in Vienna by Madam Ban Soon-taek, who had travelled to Austria separately from New York.
The Secretary-General first spoke by telephone with the President-elect of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades. He then took part in a United Nations Alliance of Civilizations Youth Event. (See Press Release SG/SM/14835.)
Later, he met with Jorge Sampaio, the outgoing High Representative of the Alliance of Civilizations, and the incoming High Representative, Nassir Abdulaziz al-Nasser.
That evening at Vienna’s Volkstheater, the Secretary-General attended an Intercultural Innovation Award Ceremony that recognizes grass-roots activities furthering the aims of the Alliance of Civilizations. (See Press ReleaseSG/SM/14837.)
On Wednesday morning the Secretary-General took part in the opening of the Fifth Global Forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations at Vienna's Hofburg Palace. (See Press Release SG/SM/14838.)
His Spokesperson later issued a note to correspondents about comments attributed to the Turkish Prime Minister at that event.
The Secretary-General also took part in a news conference and had a range of bilateral meetings during the course of the day: with Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, the Emir of Qatar; the Spanish Foreign MinisterManuel Garcia Margallo;Edward Nalbandian, the Armenian Foreign Minister; the President of The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Gjorge Ivanov; and Aliakbar Salehi, Iranian Foreign Minister. He also spoke by telephone with the President of Kenya, Mwai Kibaki, ahead of the elections in his country.
That evening, the Secretary-General attended at dinner at Vienna's City Hall hosted by the Mayor, Michael Häupl.
On Thursday morning, 28 February, the Secretary-General first met with the heads of Vienna-based organizations and gave two media interviews.
Next, he visited the United Nations headquarters in Vienna, where he met with the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna and Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Yury Fedotov, and held a town-hall meeting with staff.
He then transferred to the Hofburg Palace, where he toured the Schatzkammer, the Habsburg Imperial Treasures exhibit, with President Fischer.
The Secretary-General walked from the Palace to the Foreign Ministry, where he held talks with the Vice-Chancellor and Foreign Minister, Michael Spindelegger.
From the Ministry, the Secretary-General, accompanied by Madam Ban, transferred to the airport to board a flight to Geneva, where they arrived that same afternoon.