Kuwait was lauded for its continuous efforts in support of realizing international peace and security, as well as its role in promoting the development and human rights.
The latest appreciation for Kuwait’s efforts came from the UN Secretary-General Representative and Resident Coordinator to Kuwait Dr. Tareq AlSheikh. The UN top representative in Kuwait was speaking at a media conference held on Sunday, 8 September to mark the fifth anniversary of the UN designating His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah as ‘Leader of Humanitarian Action’ and the State of Kuwait as ‘Center of Humanitarian Action’.
Kuwait has gained unprecedented prominence on the international stage in the humanitarian action arena, as this has been a defining characteristic of the country’s foreign policy ever since Kuwait became the 111th member of the United Nations on 14 May, 1963, said Dr. AlSheikh.
Kuwait has affirmed its effectiveness through its presence in various bodies of the United Nations and in international organizations, such as the Universal Postal Union, the International Civil Aviation Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization, the International Monetary Fund, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) that later became the World Trade Organization, the International Atomic Energy Agency and many others.
In 2009, as part of its efforts to strengthen ties with the United Nations, Kuwait inaugurated the UN House in the country and in the presence of the then UN Secretary-General Ban Kimoon.
The UN House is the official venue for all UN agencies operating in Kuwait, said Dr. AlSheikh, noting that the presence of this central hub depicted the deep-rooted and strong relations between the UN and Kuwait. He also pointed out that Kuwait has increased its contributions to international humanitarian and development activity, and has consistently exceeded the target set by the UN for economically advanced countries to spend at leastf 0.7 percent of their gross national income on Official Development Assistance (ODA).
Moreover, Kuwait has established a US$100 million fund to ensure dignified life by overhauling agriculture in developing countries and donated $150 million to a fund set up in 2007 by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to pursue research in energy.
During the news conference, Dr AlSheikh also announced the ‘Cavaliers of Humanitarian Development’ competition involving Kuwaiti youth, civil society and private as well as public associations and establishments in Kuwait.
He added that the competition would mark the fifth anniversary of designating His Highness the Amir as ‘Leader of Humanitarian Action’, and the 10th anniversary of establishing the new UN headquarters in Kuwait.
He further clarified that the competition aims to give impetus to creative and improvising initiatives from the three sectors of life in Kuwait. He said that registration for the competition would begin on UN Day in October.
He also revealed that a new website for UN House in Kuwait had been launched on the occasion to promote its celebration of naming Kuwait as the ‘Center of Humanitarian Action’, and His Highness the Amir as the ‘Leader of Humanitarian Action’.