12 January 2012Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will depart New York today for an official visit to Lebanon, where he will meet with the country’s leaders and with United Nations peacekeepers serving in the country, according to his spokesperson. The visit comes at the invitation of President Michel Sleiman and Prime Minister Najib Mikati, spokesperson Martin Nesirky told reporters at UN Headquarters. Mr. Ban is scheduled to confer with both leaders, as well as the Speaker of the Lebanese Parliament and the acting head of the opposition. He will also open a high-level meeting on Arab reforms and democracy, organized by the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), which is based in Beirut.He will also meet with blue helmets serving in the south of the country with the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL).The Secretary-General will then proceed to Abu Dhabi, where he will hold a meeting of his High Level Group on Sustainable Energy for All, and attend the World Future Energy Summit.He is expected to highlight the need for sustainable energy policies to provide the world’s growing population with access to efficient and renewable energy, said Mr. Nesirky.Mr. Ban is also due to have a number of bilateral meetings with visiting leaders in both countries during the trip.
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