United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, accompanied by his wife, Ban Soon-taek, arrived in Bangkok, Thailand, on Sunday, 9 December.
On Monday, he met with the Thai Prime Minister, General Surayud Chulanont, and members of his Cabinet on issues of mutual interest to Thailand and the United Nations, including climate change, United Nations reform, global public health, the work of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the situation in Myanmar. After that meeting, the Secretary-General and the Prime Minister spoke to the press, and the Secretary-General described the partnership between the United Nations and Thailand as “broad and deep, extending across economic and social issues, as well as peacekeeping”.
Later in the afternoon, the Secretary-General spoke at a special meeting on climate change, green growth and inclusive development, organized by the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), telling them that “the UN Climate Change Conference in Bali must become the launch pad for negotiations towards a comprehensive climate deal that all nations can embrace. It must provide us with a clear road map for tackling climate change,” he said. (See Press Release SG/SM/11317)
The Secretary-General and his wife later visited the Royal Chitralada projects, which include an experimental biofuel production project that the Secretary-General described as one of the many examples of the King of Thailand’s commitment and dedication to human development and the environment.
The Secretary-General and Mrs. Ban had an audience with King Bhumibol Adulyadej and Queen Sirikit of Thailand in the evening
Also in Bangkok that day, Madame Ban Soon-taek visited the Children of HIV/AIDS Care Clinic at the Queen Sirikit National Institute of Child Health, where she met with staff, children with HIV/AIDS and their primary caretakers.
She commended the work of the hospital and urged the need for the expansion of such facilities in the region and the world over to help children afflicted with the deadly disease.
The Secretary-General and his wife departed for Indonesia early on Tuesday, 11 December.