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Austrian Foreign Minister Starts Off UN General Assembly Speech in Arabic

Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl spoke in Arabic, French and Spanish in her 20-minute speech, before wrapping it up in English.

karin kneissl un general assembly

The United Nation's General Assembly saw Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl beginning her 20-minute speech in the Arabic language. She highlighted the significance of the language in both world history and culture.

"I decided to begin my speech in Arabic, as it is one of the six languages of the United Nations," Kreissl said in her opening statement. "I studied Arabic at the UN in Vienna. It is a beautiful and important language, and a part of the ancient and Arab civilisation."

In her 20-minute statement, Kreissl mentioned that she studied Arabic in Lebanon, Syria and Iraq during times of war. "I learned how people continue with their lives despite all odds and difficulties – this is the secret of life," she said regarding her stay in these areas. "All my respect to these people."

She also mentioned that we are all the offspring of Adam, or in other words, "the offspring of humanity."

Kreissl then moved on to speak in French, Spanish, and then finally. English.

The General Assembly of the United Nations is an opportunity for speakers from the UN's representative countries to get together and discuss global issues. It began on 25 September, and will be concluding on October 1.

Main image from