Welcome to the United Nations. It's your world.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Off-the-Cuff

Secretary-General's remarks to reporters after meeting Austrian President Fischer and Chancellor Faymann

Vienna, 29 August 2013

This is going to be a very brief one because of the current situation on Syria.

With the President and Prime Minister we had a very useful exchange of views on how to address the situation in Syria. We are of the opinion that the situation should be resolved in a peaceful way through dialogue.

At the same time, while the United Nations investigation team is now on the ground they should be allowed to conclude their investigation activities, and I am going to receive their report as soon as possible.

I am now thus cutting short my visit to Austria unfortunately and I appreciate President (Heinz) Fischer’s very kind understanding of (this) inevitable situation that I would not be able to participate in the Alpbach Forum together with the President.

And we also discussed the situation in the Middle East, particularly the Golan Heights. The President explained, together with the Prime Minister, his security concerns in the Golan Heights, and I really appreciated such a long-standing dedicated contribution by Austrian troops in the Golan Heights and I expected that when the situation becomes normal that we would expect the resumption of Austrian peacekeeping contributions in the Golan Heights.

And I really appreciated the contribution in UNIFIL and also UNTSO. And I am very much grateful for Austrian Government contribution. Thank you very much.


Off-the-Cuff on 29 August 2013