UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres

NEW YORK: UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres yesterday reiterated his strong support for the continuing Kuwaiti mediation efforts aimed at ending the crisis in the Arabian Gulf region. Guterres, in a statement to Kuwait News Agency (KUNA), praised the efforts exerted by HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah on finding a solution to the crisis. The Secretary General called on all parties to resolve their differences by sitting at the negotiating table and showing a spirit of good-neighborliness and respect. He stressed that the United Nations is ready to support these efforts and mediation led by HH the Amir.

Guterres visited Kuwait late last August where he praised Kuwait's role in hosting the Yemeni negotiations and its position on the reconstruction conference of the destroyed areas in Iraq, which was under the control of the so-called Islamic State (IS) and the terrorist organizations. The UN Secretary General expressed his deep thanks and appreciation for the outstanding leadership role of HH the Amir in the field of humanitarian work and expressed his sincere gratitude for the efforts of Kuwait in all political and humanitarian issues. Guterres also expressed his pride over the status of Kuwait among the countries of the world as a center for humanitarian action as well as its constant efforts to host humanitarian and relief conferences.

HH the Amir also received a letter from Guterres yesterday, appreciating Sheikh Sabah's kind words on the opening of the 72nd session of the UN's General Assembly. In his letter, Guteress said: "I refer to your letter of 25 September 2017 and would like to express my profound gratitude for the kind words about the opening and the work of the United Nations staff in preparing the session. The challenges in front of us are enormous, but not insurmountable if we work together towards common goals and for the benefit of the people of the region and the world."

He noted that "your letter wisely noted the importance of connecting humanitarian, political and development issues to achieve sustainable peace". "In this regard, please allow me to reiterate my deepest gratitude for the efforts that you personally and the State of Kuwait have invested in both providing much-needed humanitarian assistance to people in dire need across the region and beyond, and also for conducting or supporting critical mediation efforts aimed at bringing these conflicts to an end," Guterres added. "Your support for the Yemen peace talks, to mention one initiative, is well known and welcome," the UN chief added.

"You are also uniquely placed to play a central role in the mediation efforts aimed at bringing the crisis in the Gulf to an end. You are a friend to both sides of this dispute and I am sure they carefully listen to your advice," Guterres said. "The United Nations strongly supports the continuation of your country's mediation efforts and stands ready to assist you in any way and at any time you deem most appropriate," he noted.

Guterres concluded his letter by saying that "I always personally value your wise advice on this matter, as I was able to convey this during my recent visit to the State of Kuwait. I thank you for your generous support for the efforts of the United Nations to have the logic of peace prevail over conflict." - KUNA