UNGA President to arrive in Kuwait on Thursday

UN General Assembly President Tijjani Mohammad-Bande will arrive in Kuwait on an official visit on Thursday for talks with senior officials on further promotion of cooperation between Kuwait and the world body, as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest.

This is Mohammad-Bande’s first visit since he was elected as UNGA president last June. Former UNGA presidents visited Kuwait in the past two decades. Theo-Ben Gurirab visited the State of Kuwait in May 2000, and held talks with late Amir Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah on a host of regional and international matters of mutual interest. His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah received, at Bayan Palace in March 2007, UNGA President Sheikha Haya Al-Khalifa and discussed means of achieving sustainable development at the international level.

UNGA President Ali Al-Turaiki led an official delegation on a visit to Kuwait in April 2010, during which he met with His Highness the Amir. Qatari Nasser Al-Nasser visited Kuwait in his capacity as UNGA President in July 2012, held talks with then His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah and thanked the State of Kuwait for its contribution to international peace and security.

His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah received, in December 2012, UNGA President Vuk Jeremic and discussed sustainable development and other regional matters. Jeremic paid another visit to Kuwait in May 2013, and held talks with His Highness the Amir and His Highness the Prime Minister. His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad received at Bayan Palace in January 2018 the then UNGA President Miroslav Lajcak who thanked the Kuwaiti leader for his philanthropic contributions. The State of Kuwait has been an active member throughout its UN membership, contributing to implementation of UN resolutions and working towards addressing hurdles blocking their execution.

This relationship reached another milestone when the UN honored, on September 9, 2014, His Highness the Amir as “Humanitarian Leader,” and Kuwait as “Humanitarian Center.” Kuwait joined the UN on May 14, 1963 when the UNGA adopted resolution 1872 which accepted Kuwait as the 111th member.

At that day, His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad, who was Foreign Minister at that time, addressed the UNGA. “Kuwait’s membership in this international flurry of activity clearly shows that independence and UN membership is not the end but are means to a responsible participation towards better life for its own people and peoples of the world.” Kuwait aid contributions are over 1.3 percent of its gross domestic product, exceeding the internationallyapproved 0.7 percent.

Kuwait decided in 2007 to allocate 10 percent of its aid to help UN and its agencies. It doubled this contribution in September 2014. Kuwait also said it would offer USD 6.4 million worth of grants to UN agencies and funds in 2020. The State of Kuwait was elected as non-permanent member in the UN Security Council for 2018-19. The last time it was UNSC member was in 1978.