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Time for Meds? Flashback 2007: The Crying Dutchman: UN’s Yvo de Boer breaks down into ‘flood of tears’ after warning that failure to reach climate deal could ‘plunge the world into conflict’

“After 12 exhausting days of trying to reach a worldwide agreement on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, it was suddenly all too much for Yvo de Boer. As the 200-nation Bali conference wrangled over a minor procedural matter, the Dutch diplomat in charge of the talks burst into tears and had to be led away by colleagues.” – Moments earlier, Mr de Boer had been warning delegates that failure to reach an agreement on global warming could “plunge the world into conflict”. –

As his unfinished sentences trailed away, he broke down and walked off the platform to supportive applause. “He wasn’t just wiping his eyes, he was in floods of tears,” said one observer. “Three colleagues – one of them a woman – formed a protective group around him and escorted him out of the hall. It was all very dramatic.”