Press Release
Department of Public Information · News Coverage Service · Geneva

29 January 2002

Geneva Press Briefing

Press Release


Marie Heuzé, the Director of the United Nations Information Service at Geneva, briefed journalists about the Secretary-General's visit to Austria; the Conference on Disarmament; and upcoming press conferences.

Secretary-General's Visit to Austria


The Director said that in his talks in Iran and Qatar, the Secretary-General's discussions centred around the situation in Afghanistan and the deteriorating situation in the Middle East. In Doha, the Secretary-General gave a press conference in which he said that the situation in the Middle East was "rather tragic and very, very serious", adding that collective international action was needed to try to break the impasse and bring the parties back to the table. Yesterday, the Spokesperson of the Secretary-General said that Mr. Annan had been in touch with President Arafat as well as United States, Russian and European officials. Journalists who were interested could find the text of the Secretary-General's interview with the Qatari television station Al'Jazeera on the UN website; they could also find on the website all the statements issued by the Secretary-General on the situation in the Middle East. Yesterday in Vienna, the Secretary-General met with his official coordinator for the Middle East, Terje Road Larsen, on the deteriorating situation.


Upcoming Press Conferences

Mrs. Heuzé said that on Thursday, 31 January, Peter Hansen, the UNRWA Commissioner-General, would be speaking to journalists about the UNRWA Emergency Appeal for 2002. Mr. Hansen would be speaking to donors at 3 p.m., and would address journalists between 4:30 p.m. and 4:45 p.m.


* *** *
For information media - not an official record