Didier Reynders visits the United Nations in New York and Washington DC (30/10 to 02/11)

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders travels today to the United States. His visit will last until Thursday 2nd of November. On Monday and Tuesday, the Minister will participate in events at the United Nations. From New York, the Minister will continue to Washington where he will meet with his counterpart State Secretary Rex Tillerson.

Programme at the United Nations in New York

Minister Reynders is invited by France’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian to participate in an open debate of the Security Council on children in armed conflicts. An open debate is a discussion where members who do not sit at the Security Council are invited to intervene. The intervention of the Minister will highlight the engagement of Belgium on this issue, be it regarding the functioning of its own troops, the attention to children during peace processes, the fight against the recruitment of child soldiers or the specific attention to the youth in the fight against radicalization and terrorism.

Didier Reynders will also co-chair an event on the release and reintegration in society of children associated with armed forces or armed groups. This event is organised by Belgium in collaboration with UNICEF and the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General for Children and Armed Conflicts, Mrs. Virginia Gamba.

The Minister will also take part in a debate of the Security Council dedicated to the situation in the Sahel region and, in particular, the set-up of a joint force by five countries in the region to fight against transnational armed movements. Belgium is strongly present in the Sahel region through the European Union’s support mission and the United Nations’ Mission in Mali (MINUSMA).

Bilateral programme

Didier Reynders will have a number of political meetings in Washington on November 1st and 2nd. The Minister will meet with State Secretary Rex Tillerson as well as with members of the National Security Council in the White House. Trade policy and the fight against terrorism will also be on the agenda of the visit. He will further deepen the already strong and varied bilateral relations and discuss a number of international issues.