|US Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs visited Svalbard|
| [28.06.2010, 02:02pm, Mon. GMT]|
|Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs María Otero visited Svalbard June 21 – 24 to attend the 2010 Ny-Ålesund Symposium, entitled The Changing Arctic and Its Global Implications. The Ny-Ålesund Symposium is an annual event that brings together policy makers, researchers, senior business executives and other high-level decisions makers to discuss challenges facing the Arctic region.Under Secretary Otero spoke on “How the United Nations Can Contribute to International Cooperation on Climate Change.” During the course of the Symposium, she met the patron of the event, Crown Prince Haakon, and discussed Arctic and global climate change concerns with all the international participants, including Norway’s Minister for Higher Education and Research Tora Aasland, and chair of the symposium, former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland.|
Under Secretary Otero’s visit highlights U.S. engagement on Arctic and global climate issues and our close collaboration with Norway, including through the Arctic Council, to ensure developments in the region do not harm the fragile Arctic environment. The United States conducts extensive research activities on Svalbard, including through the National Air and Space Administration, as well as through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Science Foundation.
As Under Secretary for Democracy and Global Affairs, Under Secretary Otero oversees the State Department’s bureaus of Population, Refugees and Migration; Democracy, Human Rights and Labor; Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs; and the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. She also serves as the Special Coordinator for Tibetan Issues.