September 25, 2018
With a mock security pass, 3-month-old Neve Te Aroha made history on Monday when she attended the Nelson Mandela Peace Summit at the U.N. General Assembly to listen to a speech given by her mother, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
New Zealands first baby makes UN history at General Assembly
In her father’s arms, Neve looked on as her mother, who is only the second elected leader to give birth while in office, after Pakistan’s Benazir Bhutto in 1990, addressed the assembly.
New Zealands first baby makes UN history at General Assembly
Before the address, Ardern’s partner and stay-at-home dad joked in a tweet Monday that Neve had kept them awake until 3:45 a.m., without any regard to the changing time zones.
He also shared a photo of Neve’s U.N. security pass.
“I wish I could have captured the startled look on a Japanese delegation inside U.N. yesterday who walked into a meeting room in the middle of a nappy change. Great yarn for her 21st(birthday),” he tweeted.
At 38 years old, Ardern is her country’s youngest premier and the first to ever take maternity – six weeks – while in office.
She told the New Zealand Herald after her address that it was “a practical decision” to take Neve to the General Assembly.
“Neve is actually nearby me most of the time in New Zealand, she’s just not always caught,” Ardern said. “But here, when she’s awake, we try and keep her with me. So that was the occasion.”
The couple has said Neve will accompany her mother on official business because Ardern is breastfeeding.
The United Nations was delighted to see Neve in the assembly hall, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told Reuters.
“Prime Minister Ardern is showing that no one is better qualified to represent her county than a working mother,” he said. “Just 5 percent of the world’s leaders are women, so we need to make them as welcome here as possible.”
Samantha Power, a former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. under former President Barack Obama, appeared to echo Dujarric’s statement saying on Twitter: “I cannot stress how much the @UN – and the governments that comprise it – need this.”
“I wish I could have captured the startled look on a Japanese delegation inside U.N. yesterday who walked into a meeting room in the middle of a nappy change. Great yarn for her 21st(birthday),” he tweeted.
At 38 years old, Ardern is her country’s youngest premier and the first to ever take maternity – six weeks – while in office.
She told the New Zealand Herald after her address that it was “a practical decision” to take Neve to the General Assembly.
“Neve is actually nearby me most of the time in New Zealand, she’s just not always caught,” Ardern said. “But here, when she’s awake, we try and keep her with me. So that was the occasion.”
The couple has said Neve will accompany her mother on official business because Ardern is breastfeeding.
The United Nations was delighted to see Neve in the assembly hall, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told Reuters.
“Prime Minister Ardern is showing that no one is better qualified to represent her county than a working mother,” he said. “Just 5 percent of the world’s leaders are women, so we need to make them as welcome here as possible.”
Samantha Power, a former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. under former President Barack Obama, appeared to echo Dujarric’s statement saying on Twitter: “I cannot stress how much the @UN – and the governments that comprise it – need this.”
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