United Nations
United Nations 11 Jan 2021

One Planet Summit & other topics - Daily Briefing (11 January 2021)

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Noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

Highlights:

- Secretary-General's virtual trip
- One Planet
- Secretary-General
- Security Council
- Central African Republic
- Afghanistan
- Iraq
- Kazakhstan
- Security Council Highlights
- Cameroon


SECRETARY-GENERAL'S VIRTUAL TRIP
The Secretary-General is continuing his virtual trip to the United Kingdom, where, in just a few minutes, he will sit down with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson for a virtual bilateral meeting.
He also spoke a few minutes ago at the COP26 event on Africa at an event entitled "Transition to clean power as part of a green recovery."
The Secretary-General said that, to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, we need an urgent transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy and that we especially need to support developing countries in this shift.
The Secretary-General reiterated his appeal to developed nations to fulfill their longstanding pledge to provide $100 billion dollars a year for developing countries to support mitigation and adaptation. He also said the World Bank, the African Development Bank and the national development banks must develop financial instruments that can reduce investment risks and attract private capital to African countries.
In addition, he emphasized the importance of investing in adaptation, as Africa is highly vulnerable to climate risks.
Yesterday, as you know, the Secretary-General joined Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon in an event to mark the 75th anniversary of the first session of the United Nations General Assembly, which took place in London's Westminster Central Methodist Hall.
In his remarks, the Secretary-General said that, throughout its history, the work of the General Assembly has helped to boost global health, literacy, and living standards, and to promote human rights and gender equality. 
Turning to the challenges of our time, Mr. Guterres reiterated his call for a new global deal, as well as a new social contract between people, governments, the private sector and civil society to tackle the roots of inequality.
We need a networked multilateralism, Mr. Guterres said, so that global and regional organizations communicate and work together towards common goals.
Concluding on an optimistic note, the Secretary-General expressed confidence that, together, we can emerge from this pandemic and lay the foundations for a cleaner, safer, fairer world for all, and for generations to come. 
ONE PLANET
Earlier this morning, the Secretary-General spoke by video teleconference to the One Planet Summit, convened by French President Emmanuel Macron. He said that 2021 must be the year to reconcile humanity with nature. He stressed that, as we rebuild and recover from the pandemic, we cannot revert to the old normal. This is our chance to change course, he said, with smart policies and the right investments.
He also said that protecting the world's biodiversity can help create jobs and added that the Biodiversity meeting in Kunming, China, which is scheduled for this year and is a vital step in stopping the extinction crisis.
The Secretary-General reiterated his message that countries must put a price on carbon, stop building new coal plants, end fossil fuel subsidies, and shift the fiscal burden from taxpayers to polluters.
He also pointed out that the newly launched High Ambition Coalition is a sign that the private and public sectors, along with civil society can work together on initiatives to protect the planet.


Noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

Highlights:

- Central African Republic
- Central African Republic Update
- Mali
- Security Council
- Uganda
- Ethiopia
- Malawi
- Death Penalty
- Ilo Report
- Fao
- Honour Roll

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
The Secretary-General strongly condemns today's attacks near Bangui by unidentified armed combatants on Central African national defense and security forces, as well as UN peacekeepers. A UN peacekeeper from Rwanda was killed and another injured in today's attack. 
The Secretary-General expresses his deepest condolences to the family of the deceased peacekeeper, as well as to the people and Government of Rwanda. He wishes a speedy recovery to the injured. 
The Secretary-General recalls that attacks against UN peacekeepers may constitute a war crime. He calls on the Central African authorities to take all the necessary measures to ensure accountability for these heinous attacks. 
The Secretary-General remains very concerned over continued destabilization efforts by armed groups in the Central African Republic, and calls on all parties to stop violence and engage in meaningful dialogue. He commends the continued engagement of the UN peacekeepers in their efforts to protect civilians and preserve national stability. 
The Secretary-General reiterates the commitment of the UN, working closely with national, regional and international partners, to support the cause of peace in the Central African Republic. 

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC UPDATE
Following this morning's attack, the UN Mission says that the overall situation remains under control, although tensions are continuing.  
UN peacekeepers have reinforced their posture in Bangui and in areas surrounding the capital, in coordination with Central African defense and security forces, as well as other security partners. This is to prevent further infiltrations towards the capital of armed groups aiming to destabilize national institutions.   
The security of UN personnel and premises have also been reinforced.

MALI
Another sad and tragic note from the peacekeeping department: Following an attack today against a UN convoy in Timbuktu, Mali, the Peacekeeping Mission reports that one peacekeeper has died and seven others were injured.  
The UN Mission has secured the area, provided casualty evacuation and launched an investigation into the incident. 
More details on that incident in Mali will be shared when available.
SECURITY COUNCIL
Mali was the subject at the Security Council this morning and Council members heard from Mahamat Saleh Annadif, the head of the UN peacekeeping Mission in the country. He reiterated that the transition period represents a real opportunity for the country to break out of the vicious circle of political crises followed by coups d'état. 
He noted that despite a lack of consensus throughout the process that led to the designation of members of the Government and the National transitional council, we should welcome the fact that all transitional bodies are operational today. 
Mr. Annadif told Council members that the success of the transition depends on the successful completion of reforms, leading to inclusive and credible elections. He warned that the process will only be viable if it is the product of the will of the Malian political actors. 
As Special Representative for Mali for nearly five years, he concluded with his hope that this window of opportunity will not be a missed opportunity.
Noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

Highlights:
- Secretary-General/COVID-19
- Senior Personnel Appointments
- Libya
- Lebanon
- Mali
- Cameroon
- Yemen
- Central African Republic
- Ethiopia
- Indonesia
- Bosnia And Herzegovina
- COVID-19 Vaccines For Refugees

SECRETARY-GENERAL/COVID-19
In a video message today, the Secretary-General said that our world has reached a heart-wrenching milestone, with the COVID-19 pandemic having claimed two million lives. 
The Secretary-General said that, in the memory of those two million souls, the world must act with far greater solidarity, stressing now is the time.
The United Nations is supporting countries to mobilize the largest global immunization effort in history and we are committed to making sure that vaccines are seen as global public good. This, the Secretary-General said, requires full funding for the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator and its COVAX facility.
He warned that we are seeing a vaccine vacuum. Vaccines are reaching high income countries quickly, while the world's poorest have none at all.
While science is succeeding, the Secretary-General said that solidarity is failing.
He said that our world can only get ahead of this virus one way — together, and that global solidarity will save lives, protect people and help defeat this vicious virus.
SENIOR PERSONNEL APPOINTMENTS
Today, the Secretary-General is appointing Nicholas Haysom of South Africa as his Special Representative for South Sudan. He will lead the UN peacekeeping mission there, otherwise known as UNMISS. 
He will succeed David Shearer of New Zealand to whom the Secretary-General is grateful for his exemplary leadership of the UN Mission during the time of critical developments and challenges for South Sudan.
Currently the Secretary-General's Special Adviser for Southern Africa, a position he has held since October of last year, Mr. Haysom is a lawyer with a long international career with a focus on democratic governance, constitutional and electoral reforms, reconciliation and peace processes.
The Secretary-General is also announcing the appointment of Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir of Iceland as his new Deputy Special Representative for Political Affairs and Electoral Assistance in the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI).
Ms. Gísladóttir succeeds Alice Walpole of the United Kingdom, who will complete her assignment at the end of February. The Secretary-General is grateful to Ms. Walpole for her dedicated service since 2017 for the UN in Iraq.
Ms. Gísladóttir brings a wealth of diplomatic and political experience to the position, including from her recent role as the Director of the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights in the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), and most recently as the Head of its Election Observation Unit.
LIBYA
The UN Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) says there has been significant progress made in the ongoing talks of the Advisory Committee for the Libyan Political Dialogue Forum, which is underway in Geneva.  The Mission hopes shortly they will be able to narrow down the major differences and reach near consensus on many of the contentious issues concerning the selection mechanism proposals.
Noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

Highlights:

- Central African Republic
- Mali
- South Sudan
- Ethiopia
- Libya
- Syria
- Israel/Palestine
- India
- Mozambique
- Madagascar
- U.N. Conference On Trade And Development

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
In the Central African Republic, today, the peacekeeping mission on the ground (MINUSCA) tells us that the security situation remains fragile throughout the country. Peacekeepers continue to maintain a robust posture to ensure the protection of civilians.
You will have also seen that, yesterday afternoon, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, the head of Peace Operations, joined senior officials from the African Union, the Economic Commission of Central African States (ECCAS) and the European Union, in issuing a joint statement. The statement took note of the decision of the Central African Constitutional court, which proclaimed the final results of last month's presidential election.
In their joint statement, they called on all actors to accept the results of the elections as certified by the Court, and reaffirmed their commitment to political dialogue, the consolidation of peace and democracy.
The UN mission will continue to provide its multifaceted support to complete the electoral process, particularly the legislative elections. 
Also on the Central African Republic, we have a few more details on yesterday's attack in the country. Two peacekeepers - one from Gabon and one Morocco - were killed near Bangassou, in the Mbomou prefecture, by alleged combatants from the Coalition of Patriots for Change, the CPC.
The Secretary-General expressed his deep condolences to the families of the peacekeepers, and to the people and Governments of Gabon and Morocco.
The Secretary-General also reiterated his grave concern over the escalation of violence in the Central African Republic, and called on all parties to immediately cease hostilities, to engage in dialogue to advance the political process, preserve fragile gains and fulfil the country's aspirations for lasting peace. 
Already this year, as you will have noted, nine UN peacekeepers have been killed in incidents around the world. The Secretary-General said this demonstrates, yet again, the perilous environment in which peacekeepers carry out their mandates to protect people and support peace processes. The task is made harder by the global pandemic. While progress has been made in reducing casualties among UN peacekeepers, recent incidents show that the threat continues. Our collective efforts to ensure the safety of peacekeepers, including through the Action for Peacekeeping initiative, need to keep pace.
The Secretary-General salutes the service, the sacrifice and the selflessness of the women and men who are serving, or have lost their lives while serving, under the flag of the UN in some of the world's most dangerous places.
MALI
The Head of Peace Operations, Jean-Pierre Lacroix is still in Mali today.
We wanted to note that, this morning, at the headquarters of the UN Mission (MINUSCA) in Bamako, he took part in a ceremony to honour the memory of the peacekeepers killed last week. 
The head of the Peacekeeping Mission in Mali, Mahamet Saleh Annadif, also attended the ceremony.
Since his arrival in the country, Mr. Lacroix has had a series of meetings with political leaders and the UN's partners. His visit will continue tomorrow.
SOUTH SUDAN
From South Sudan, the UN Mission (UNMISS) says it is deploying additional troops and resources to Bunj in the Upper Nile region following recent clashes.
The Mission said it is enhancing its peacekeepers' ability to conduct more frequent patrols.
Peacekeepers recently assessed the security situation in the area. They met with county commissioners and others to understand what the community is experiencing, given the current instability and tensions.
The Mission is also helping to deliver humanitarian aid to those in need.
Noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

Highlights:

- Secretary-General virtual visit to the United Kingdom
- Security Council
- Yemen
- Libya
- South Sudan
- Madagascar
- Ebola Vaccine Stockpile
- Children

SECRETARY-GENERAL VIRTUAL VISIT TO UNITED KINGDOM
The Secretary-General is wrapping up his first virtual visit to the United Kingdom today.
In a few minutes, he will be meeting with Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales. The meeting is expected to focus on the issue of climate change.
This morning, the Secretary-General also had bilateral meetings with Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, Minister of State at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, as well as with the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby, who is also a member of the SG's High-Level Advisory Board on Mediation.
And, yesterday, during their meeting, the Secretary-General thanked Prime Minister Boris Johnson for his country's support to the United Nations, as well as for the UK's political and financial leadership in the fight against the pandemic.
Earlier this week, the lawn situated at the front of Queen Elizabeth II Centre, in Westminster, was renamed United Nations Green in commemoration of the 75th anniversary.

SECURITY COUNCIL
This morning, the Security Council held a ministerial-level meeting to mark the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Counter-terrorism Committee, established through resolution 1373.
Vladimir Voronkov, the head of the Counter-terrorism office, began his remarks by noting how quickly the Security Council acted to establish the committee in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks in 2001.
Throughout the last two decades, he said, the threat of terrorism has persisted, evolved and spread, causing unspeakable human suffering and loss. Over the years, he added, the Council has provided critical impetus and guidance for Member States, which has led to important successes, helping Member States to bring terrorists to justice and disrupt additional attacks.
Mr. Voronkov said the Security Council's leadership remains critical to ensure a unified front against terrorism, adding it is essential to reinvigorate international counter-terrorism cooperation during and after the pandemic, with a focus on emerging threats and challenges.
Also speaking at this session was Michèle Coninsx, the Executive Director of the Counter Terrorism Executive Directorate. She said that the COVID-19 pandemic has further complicated an already challenging threat landscape.
She added we must ensure that future counter-terrorism policies respect the rule of law and are both human rights-compliant and gender sensitive.

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