Annan heads to Athens for European Conference, high-level talks on Iraq

14 April 2003

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan leaves today for Athens where he has been invited to attend the European Conference, and is scheduled to hold high-level talks on a number of issues including developments in Iraq.

The Secretary-General will arrive in Athens tomorrow and will begin the series of meetings on Wednesday afternoon. He is expected to see British Prime Minister Tony Blair, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and the foreign ministers of France, Germany, Russia, Spain and the United Kingdom.

On Thursday, in addition to attending the opening meeting of the European Conference, Mr. Annan is expected to meet with French President Jacques Chirac in the morning. Later, Mr. Annan will meet with Prime Minister Costas Simitis, of Greece – who extended the invitation on behalf of his country which currently holds the rotating presidency of the European Union – and Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou.