United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, accompanied by his wife Ban Soon-taek, arrived in Santo Domingo, from Haiti, early in the evening of Tuesday, 15 July.
That night, the Secretary-General held discussions with Danilo Medina Sánchez, the President of the Dominican Republic. In a statement to the press afterwards, the Secretary-General said that the country was making important strides towards achieving food security, advancing education and reversing the spread of HIV/AIDS. He also commended President Medina for his long-term vision to invest in and prioritize education. On the issue of Dominican-born persons of foreign descent, he said that the new law was an important step towards the recognition of the Dominican nationality of these individuals, and he encouraged the Dominican authorities to keep working hard to resolve statelessness and protect human rights.
The Secretary-General then had dinner with President Medina.
The next morning, Wednesday 16 July, the Secretary-General met with the President of the Senate, Reinaldo Pared Perez, as well as the President of the Chamber of Deputies, Abel Martinez.
He then addressed a Joint Session of Congress. He told parliamentarians that the Dominican Republic was helping achieve collective ambitions across the three pillars of the United Nations Charter: peace and security, development and human rights. He also noted that President Medina had asked for assistance with expanding education and equal opportunities, creating decent jobs and combating inequality and said the United Nations stood ready to work with the country. (See Press Release SG/SM/16032.)
While in Santo Domingo, the Secretary-General visited the Government’s “Quisqueya sin Miseria” anti-poverty programme, which aims to assist the most vulnerable groups. He said that he fully supported this campaign. “And through teaching and educating the people of your country, you can count on the United Nations, and the UN Country Team in the Dominican Republic, to always work with you,” he added. (See Press Release SG/SM/16033.)
Before leaving the Dominican Republic, the Secretary-General toured Santo Domingo’s Colonial City with the Minister of Tourism, Francisco Javier Garcia.
The Secretary-General and his wife travelled back to New York that evening.