In New York this week, the United Nations held the 72nd General Assembly with representatives from all over the world in town. As expected, members of various royal families were in attendance including Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, Queen Máxima of the Netherlands, Prince Albert II of Monaco, King Abdullah II, Queen Rania and Crown Prince Hussein of Jordan, Princess Beatrice of York, King Mswati III of Swaziland, King Tupou VI of Tongo and the Emir of Qatar.
As the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance (UNSGSA), Queen Máxima has been at the United Nations to discuss the topic and hand in the yearly report to the Secretary-General. She attended a meeting that First Daughter and Special Advisor to the President, Ivanka Trump attended. Trump later posted an image on her Instagram thanking Her Majesty for her work in the field of financial inclusion across the globe saying, ” Financial inclusion is key to empowering women globally. Thank you, Queen Maxima for your tireless commitment to this critical mission.”
During her quick trip to the United States, Her Majesty attended the Global Goals Awards Dinner, participated in the “Goalkeepers” event and took part in the session ‘Purpose Driven Technology.’ As the guest of honour at Bloomberg’s Global Business Forum, she spoke having an “inclusive economy” with government officials and major international companies. Additionally, she met with government officials of countries actively involved in promoting inclusive finance, central banks and with the members of the ‘Reference Group’. She also handed over her annual report as the UNSGSA to the Secretary-General.
King Abdullah of Jordan, who headed the Jordanian delegation to the UN, took part in various meetings in New York with other government officials including US President Trump and Lebanese President Michel Aoun. He spoke to President Trump regarding the strategic partnership between Jordan and the United States. He told the press that Jordan would always stand by the United States and thanked the United States for its support of Jordan.
Queen Rania of Jordan also had a busy schedule during her working visit alongside her husband and son. She presented awards to the winners of the MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Solve Challenge last Sunday and also presented Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau with the Atlantic Council Global Citizen Award. Additionally, Her Majesty participated in the “Goalkeepers” event hosted by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to encourage young leaders to expedite the process of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
His Royal Highness Crown Prince Hussein of Jordan addressed the UN General Assembly on behalf of his father, the King of Jordan. In his speech, he commented on how Jordan had faced numerous “external shocks” like being surrounded by conflicts which impacted trade with various Middle Eastern countries and Europe. He emphasised the 1.3 million refugees the country has taken in from places like Syria and Palestine; over a quarter of the Jordanian budget is spent on Syrian refugees, he explained. His Royal Highness said, “We did not turn our back on people in need. We are weighted by massive debt, but we stand tall and proud.” The Crown Prince said that Jordan still needs aid due to the conflicts surrounding it and solidified the country’s duty as the Hashemite custodian of Holy sites for Muslims and Christians in Jerusalem.
His Serene Highness Prince Albert of Monaco had a busy agenda including meeting the President of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos and the Prime Minister of Cabo Verde, Ulisses Correia e Silva, attended a lunch hosted by the Secretary-General, alongside President Macron of France presented a preliminary draft of the Global Compact for the Environment and attended the traditional reception organised by the President of the host country of the United Nations, President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump. He also spoke to the UN General Assembly on Day 1 with an emphasis on the environment. His speech also covered topics such as Monaco’s support for human rights, democracy, and the rule of law and working to end mass suffering like what is going on in war-torn Syria.
The Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, spoke at the United Nations and called for “unconditional dialogue based on mutual respect for sovereignty” to bring an end to the Gulf crisis. The Emir took his time at the podium at the UN to criticise the four Arab countries boycotting his country.
The King of Swaziland took time during his speech to call for the UN to be reformed with the Security Council mentioned specifically. He also reiterated Africa’s call to be part of the Security Council permanently and asked that member states address the nuclear threats in our world and discussed the harm that climate change (resulting in severe drought) has negatively impacted crop production.
The King of Tonga expressed “his solidarity and sympathy to the people of Mexico and the Caribbean, reiterated his call for the appointment of a Special Representative on climate and security,” and said Tonga “had established a national monitoring mechanism to oversee progress related to achieving the goals of the 2030 Agenda,” according to the United Nations. He also appealed for a speedy resolution to the situation going on with North Korea.
Crown Princess Mary attended various events in New York including visiting The Melting Pot Foundation which is a new cooking school in New York for socially vulnerable children. She also participated in the Delivering Good: Inspiring SDG Action for Girls and Women conference and the event of ‘Rebuilding Shattered Lives and Communities’ with the UN Population Fund. Additionally, the Crown Princess was present at the Global Goals World Cup.
Princess Beatrice of York was in town to speak at a UN event on Thursday. Her Royal Highness took to the stage at a WE Day UN, an event which is held in the main cities across the world for school children. The Princess said: “I’ve had the pleasure to take to the WE Day stage several times and I can tell you first hand that the WE movement is a powerful and global force for good.”