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UN Secretary General honours the Amir of Kuwait

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By Baron Henri Estramant.

An unusual honour has been bestowed upon an Arab leader, the Amir of the State of Kuwait. In an official ceremony presided over by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on 9 September 2014 in New York, the latter lauded the “exemplary humanitarian leadership” of His Highness Amir Sabah IV bin Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Ali Al Sabah, 5th Amir of Kuwait since 2006. Before his throne accession, Amir Sabah IV served between 1963 and 2003 as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs. From 2003 to January 2006 he was the emirate’s Prime Minister.

In the words of Ban Ki-moon: “For more than three years, we have witnessed an unfolding humanitarian catastrophe in the Middle East. First in Syria, now in Iraq, we have seen the terrible consequences of conflict. But in response to this death and chaos, we have seen remarkable acts of human kindness and generosity. Kuwait has shown exemplary humanitarian leadership in supporting these operations. Under the leadership of the Amir, Kuwait has hosted two pledging conferences – in 2013 and 2014 – and its hosts the meetings of the Top Donors Group for Syria”.

“In the past two years Kuwait has donated hundreds of millions of dollars for humanitarian operations, not only in the Middle East, but in Chad, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Somalia and Sudan”.

The Freedom House, ranking the civil and political liberties enjoyed by ordinary citizens, ranks Kuwait as one of the freest countries in the Middle East, in fact as “partly free”, the only GCC country to attain that ranking. Moreover the State of Kuwait distinguishes itself for the its active parliament and relative electoral liberty albeit the country is yet to become a parliamentary monarchy. The House of Sabah (Al Sabah) rules Kuwait since the early 18th century. The current monarch is the 15th Al Sabah Ruler of Kuwait nevertheless only the 5th styled “Emir”. His half-brother, His Highness Crown Prince Nawaf Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al Sabeh is heir presumptive and Deputy Emir.


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