United Nations peacekeeping and ongoing conflicts and tensions in the Middle East were on the agenda during talks today between Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
The two officials, meeting on the margins of the General Assembly’s annual general debate, discussed the situation in Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), where the UN has substantial peacekeeping missions in operation.
Mr. Ban and Mr. Lavrov discussed the scope of the UN’s needs so that it can fully discharge its peacekeeping responsibilities in those countries, and the possibility of Russian assistance to achieve that end, according to information released by a spokesperson for the Secretary-General.
Today’s discussions also took in the situations in Libya, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, the Middle East peace process, the talks to reunify Cyprus and the so-called Six Party talks on the Korean Peninsula.
The meeting with Mr. Lavrov was one of a series of bilateral discussions Mr. Ban held with top world officials gathered for the Assembly’s general debate.
Today Mr. Ban also spoke with Pham Binh Minh, the Foreign Minister of Viet Nam; Nabil ElAraby, the Secretary General of the League of Arab States; Hailemariam Desalegn, the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Ethiopia; Brunei’s Prince Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah and Tajik Foreign Minister Hamrokhon Zarifi.
On Saturday the Secretary-General held bilateral meetings with Niger’s President Mahamadou Issoufou; Danny Philip, Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands; Djiboutian President Ismail Omar Guelleh; Thailand’s Foreign Minister Surapong Tovichakchaikul; Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, Foreign Minister of Cuba; and Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.