Secretary-General to depart on four-nation Asia tour

The United Nations’ relations with Thailand, Cambodia, Viet Nam and China will be among the top items of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s agenda when he visits the four Asian nations next week, it was announced today.

His trip will begin in the Thai capital, Bangkok, where he will hold talks with Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and other Government representatives.

Mr. Ban will then travel to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where he will meet with King Norodom Sihamoni and Prime Minister Hun Sen. While in the capital, he will visit the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC), the UN-backed tribunal in the nation dealing with mass killings and other crimes committed under the Khmer Rouge three decades ago.

In Viet Nam, the Secretary-General will attend a summit of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the UN, and will also meet with President Nguyen Minh Triet, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and Foreign Minister Pham Gia Khiem.

Mr. Ban will wrap up his visit in China, where he will visit Beijing, Shanghai and Nanjing. He will also hold talks with President Hu Jintao, the Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, and other senior Government officials.

In China, he will also take part in the Summit Forum and closing ceremony of the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai.

In each of the four countries, the Secretary-General will meet with UN Resident Coordinators, UN Country Teams and staff to discuss the important role they play in the respective countries they work in. While in Bangkok, the Secretary-General will visit the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) - the regional arm of the UN - where he will chair a meeting of the UN's Asia-Pacific Regional Coordination Mechanism which includes the heads of UN Agencies for the Asia-Pacific Region, and the UN Country Team for Thailand.