Middle East

06 April 2019, Amman

Opening remarks to the press after visit to the UNRWA Baqa’a camp

It was a very emotional moment for me to enter the classroom of the UNRWA school for Palestine refugees and to see young children learning about and discussing human rights, and then to participate in a student parliament. And to see that in 700 schools, 530,000 Palestine refugee children are learning not only about science and about mathematics or about Arabic, but are learning about human rights, about democracy, about tolerance, making the conditions to be exemplary citizens. And this is something that warms my heart.

06 April 2019, Amman

Remarks at World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa

Secretary-General António Guterres addresses the World Economic Forum on the Middle East and North Africa, in Amman, Jordan. UN Photo

Your Majesties,
Your Royal Highness,
Ladies and Gentlemen, all protocol observed,
I thank Their Majesties King Abdullah II and Queen Rania Al Abdullah, as well as the people and government of Jordan, for hosting this timely meeting. 
Your Majesty, it has been a pleasure to work with you across the decades, from my time as Prime Minister of Portugal through my years as United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and now in my present capacity.
You have always been a champion of peace.

03 April 2019, Cairo

Opening remarks at press conference with Foreign Minister Sameh Hassan Shokry Selim of Egypt

I’d like to first of all express my deep gratitude for the wonderful Egyptian hospitality, which I always enjoy when coming to Cairo.
I am very grateful for the opportunity to have a lengthy and very important discussion with His Excellency President [Abdelfattah al] Sisi and with Minister [Sameh] Shoukry yesterday and today.

16 December 2018, Doha

Keynote address to the closing of the Doha Forum

I congratulate the Doha Forum and its mission to serve as a “platform for global dialogue on critical challenges facing our world”.
Perhaps the most precious – and increasingly scarce – resource in our world today is indeed dialogue. Places to broaden understanding, share ideas, think out of the box and find common ground.
We need more such platforms to respond to our collective challenges. I thank you for the space you have created through the Doha Forum. I know you have had a very full and rich two days of discussions.

16 December 2018, Doha

Lecture at Hamad Bin Khalifa University

When I was coming to the university, I was asking myself, what am I going to talk about? And then all of a sudden I decided it would probably be best to confront you, on the one hand, on what has just been said by our host which means we live in a world where, more and more, we have challenges that are global, more and more we have problems that no country can solve by itself, but at the same time a world where many people do not believe that international organizations can be helpful. They believe that their own countries should be doing it by themselves.

16 December 2018, Doha

Opening remarks at press conference with Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al-Thani of Qatar

This ceremony is a clear demonstration of the exemplar nature and partnership between the State of Qatar and the United Nations, and I want to express my very deep gratitude on behalf of all UN agencies and departments represented here and on behalf of the UN as a whole for the extremely important support that was signed here that represents a magical solution to the work of our agencies in so many different areas, thanks to the generosity of the State of Qatar and His Highness the Emir.

16 September 2018, Jeddah

Remarks at press conference with Foreign Minister Adel Ahmed Al-Jubeir of Saudi Arabia

I am extremely happy to be here in Jeddah, as I had the opportunity to witness a historic moment. The signature of the peace agreement between the President of Eritrea and the Prime Minister of Ethiopia is indeed a historic event. We have seen a conflict that has lasted for decades ending, and that has a very important meaning in a world where we see, unfortunately, so many conflicts multiplying and lasting forever.

17 April 2018, Riyadh

Opening remarks at joint press conference with Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia Adel al-Jubeir

Ladies and gentlemen from the press, thank you very much for your presence.

17 April 2018, Riyadh

Remarks at the 16th meeting of the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre Advisory Board

I thank the Government and the people of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for their hospitality.  
I want to express my deep gratitude to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for its generous support to the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre, a support without which the Centre, would probably never have been able to be born.
And I thank Ambassador Al Mouallimi for his able chairmanship of this Advisory Board.

14 February 2018, Kuwait City

Press statement at the Iraq Reconstruction Conference

It was [inaudible] to convene a conference mobilizing [inaudible] necessary to respond to that terrible humanitarian drama.
Today, Kuwait assumes the leadership in convening the conference in solidarity with the people and the Government of Iraq.
But the response to this conference and to this appeal is an extraordinary proof of confidence in the Government and in the people of Iraq. The international community has shown the recognition that Iraq is on the right track for recovery and stabilization.