New York

18 October 2013

Transcript of press encounter by Secretary-General following a Security Council open debate on women, peace and security [unofficial transcript]

Q: What is your reaction to Saudi Arabia’s announcement this morning?

SG: Membership in the Security Council is a decision by Member States.

I have taken note of the media reports regarding the decision of Saudi Arabia. But I would like to caution that I have not received any official notification in this regard.

I encourage all Member States to fully engage with the principal organs of the United Nations while advancing their efforts to improve their working methods.

We also are looking forward to working very closely in addressing many important challenges with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, particularly to bring an end to the war in Syria, to help Palestinian people to achieve a viable State, and to help the current transition in Yemen, and also to extend humanitarian assistance to all the people in need, and to combat terrorism and nuclear proliferation.   Thank you very much.

Q: Are you going to call the King to talk about this issue?

SG: Let me think about how we handle this matter.  I understand that some Member States, particularly some concerned group of Member States, are discussing [this] among themselves.  I will just very closely follow how Member States will decide on this matter.