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United Nations Daily Highlights, 10-05-14

United Nations Daily Highlights Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The United Nations Home Page at <http://www.un.org> - email: unnews@un.org

ARCHIVES

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE NOON BRIEFING

BY MARTIN NESIRKY

SPOKESPERSON FOR SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON

U.N. HEADQUARTERS, NEW YORK

Friday, May 14, 2010

SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON LAYS OUT PRIORITIES TO COMBAT PIRACY

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

spoke this morning at the General Assemblys informal meeting on piracy, saying that, though it may seem like something out of the past, piracy is very much with us. In some parts of the world, it is resurgent. According to the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the global figure for pirate attacks for 2009 was 406 an increase of 100 over 2008.

The Secretary-General said that the figures are alarming, and that we need to assess what is working, and what needs to be improved.

He laid out four key priorities: for international cooperation; for piracy to be dealt with on land as well as at sea; for piracy suspects to be brought to justice; and for piracy to be examined in the wider context of security at sea.

And also, the Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs, Patricia OBrien, spoke at the meeting. She noted the General Assemblys continuing role in addressing piracy from a global perspective. She said the United Nations remains committed to supporting the efforts of states in the repression of piracy.

U.N. REFUGEE AGENCY ALARMED BY RISE IN L.R.A. ATTACKS IN CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC

The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said it was

alarmed by reports of a dramatic rise in the frequency and brutality of attacks by the Lords Resistance Army (LRA) against civilians in the Central African Republic.

In the Central African Republic, there were at least ten LRA raids in southern province of Haut-Mbomou between March 20th and May 6th. UNHCR says thirty-six people were killed, houses were burned, and 10,000 people were uprooted with 411 people fleeing across the border into the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The UN Taskforce on Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), of which UNHCR is a member, is making arrangements to quickly deliver water and sanitation facilities and services, food, plastic sheets, blankets, sleeping mats, mosquito nets, kitchen sets, and sanitary kits to the newly displaced. An assessment mission is also on its way to the area.

UNHCR is also concerned about LRA attacks in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan. In the DRC, as you know, the latest attack in late February in Orientale Province is reported to have killed up to 100 people. In Sudan, on 6 April, the group raided a refugee settlement in Western Equatoria, killing one refugee and injuring another.

U.N. MISSION WORKING TO DEFUSE TENSIONS IN SOUTHERN SUDAN

Asked about recent reports of violence in Jonglei State, in southern Sudan, the Spokesperson said that the United Nations is concerned about the current situation in Jonglei State and the UN Mission in Sudans (UNMIS) leadership is in close contact with the various parties, to assist their efforts in defusing the tension.

Asked about tensions in Darfur, Nesirky said that the UN-African Union Mission there (UNAMID) is concerned and is keenly aware of the build-up of forces by the Sudanese armed forces and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM). It calls on all parties to refrain from violence and to return to negotiations as soon as possible.

D.R.CONGO: SECURITY COUNCIL MISSION TO MEET PRESIDENT TOMORROW

The

Security Council mission led by French Ambassador Gerard Araud has arrived in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

The mission says that they are scheduled to meet with President Joseph Kabila tomorrow, in the Bas-Congo Province.

They met with the leadership of the

UN peacekeeping mission today, and with the countrys prime minister.

HUMAN RIGHTS CHIEF WRAPS UP VISIT TO JAPAN

Concluding her visit to Japan, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay

said Friday she had held encouraging discussions with the Japanese government on a range of domestic and international human rights issues, including discrimination, treatment of migrants, methods to combat trafficking, the death penalty and maximizing Japans potential as an influential actor on the international stage.

During her three-day visit, the High Commissioner held talks with Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Katsuya Okada, and the Minister of Justice, Keiko Chiba as well as with other senior government officials including Sadako Ogata, President of JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency) and herself a former UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

MILLENNIUM DEVELOPMENT GOALS SONG FOR AFRICA IS LAUNCHED IN JOHANNESBURG

Helen Clark, the chair of the UN Development Group, today launched a campaign song by eight of Africas best known musicians, which calls for commitment to achieve the

Millennium Development Goals.

The song, 8 Goals for Africa, was launched in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The music video for the song will be screened throughout the World Cup, at fan parks and public viewing areas across South Africa. The song and video are available as a free download.

The musicians involved include Yvonne Chaka Chaka, Angelique Kidjo, Baaba Maal, Eric Wainaina, the Soweto Gospel Choir, Hugh Masekela and Jimmy Dludlu.

UNDP Administrator Helen Clark also launched today in Johannesburg the second annual Picture This photo contest. The contest, organized by UNDP in partnership with Olympus and the Agence France-Presse (AFP) Foundation, seeks to show the inspirational work that is being done in many countries to achieve the MDGs. UNDP Goodwill Ambassador and internationally-acclaimed actor Antonio Banderas is one of five judges who will choose the winning photos, which will be exhibited during the MDGs Summit in September.

W.F.P. AMBASSADOR CHRISTINA AGUILERA VISITS HAITI AND URGES WORLD TO HELP

Singer Christina Aguilera, the newly appointed Ambassador Against Hunger of the World Food Programme (WFP),

visited Haiti earlier this week, urging people to donate so that Haitians could rebuild their lives.

Aguilera toured the quake-stricken country with

WFP aid workers and spent time with mothers and children who have found refuge in camps after the January earthquake. Aguilera visited schools to meet the children receiving food aid through WFP school meal programmes. She helped serve meals of rice and beans to children at the Ecole Lycee Fritz Pierre Louis in Port-au-Prince and at the Ecole Saint Therese de Darbonne, in Leogane, a badly damaged town south of the capital.

The children I visited in the schools were so happy to get rice and beans from WFP. They have such joy and are eager to learn despite the destruction around them. The children deserve a chance - and I want to make sure they get a chance, she said.

OTHER ANNOUNCEMENTS

SECRETARY-GENERAL IS CONCERNED ABOUT REPORTS OF VIOLENCE IN KYRGYZSTAN: In response to a question after the briefing, the Spokesman said the Secretary-General is concerned about the reports of violence and loss of life in the seizures of Government buildings in Osh, Jalalabad, and Batken in southern Kyrgyzstan. He underlines the need to respect the rule of law and appeals for calm. The Secretary-General urges all concerned to show restraint and to resolve issues peacefully through dialogue.

SIGNIFICANT MEETING OF THE ALLIANCE OF CIVILIZATIONS AT END OF MONTH IN BRAZIL: Asked about the

Alliance of Civilizations initiative, the Spokesperson said that the Secretary-General believes that it is an important undertaking which can allow people to deal with differences in their cultures in a positive way. The Secretary-General, he said, believes that the meeting of the Alliance in Rio de Janeiro later this month is a significant one. He is also encouraged by the intention of the United States to join the Alliance of Civilizations.

SECRETARY-GENERAL REMAINS COMMITTED TO SRI LANKA PANEL OF EXPERTS: Asked about the Panel of Experts being considered to advise the Secretary-General on Sri Lanka, the Spokesperson said that the Secretary-General remains committed to that Panel, which is being set up without delay. A visit to Sri Lanka by Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs B. Lynn Pascoe is also in the works, he added.

THE WEEK AHEAD AT THE UNITED NATIONS

Saturday, 15 May

Today is the International Day of Families.

Sunday, 16 May

There are no major events scheduled for today.

Monday, 17 May

Today, the Security Council will hold a debate on the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK).

Today is World Telecommunication and Information Society Day.

In Geneva, the Commission on Science and Technology and Development will hold its thirteenth session from today to 21 May.

Starting today and until 28 May, the UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences, Gulnara Shahinian, will visit Brazil on her first fact-finding mission to the country.

The Deputy Secretary-General will be in Kigali, Rwanda, at the invitation of the Rwandese Government to address an International Forum on the Role of Leadership in Promoting Gender Equality.

Tuesday, 18 May

This morning, the Security Council will hear a briefing and then hold consultations on the situation in the Middle East.

At 11.00 a.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, Rob Vos, Director of Development Policy in DESA, will launch the Economic Report on Africa 2010 (ERA). Published annually by the Economic Commission for Africa and the African Union Commission, the theme of this years report is Promoting High-level Sustainable Growth to Reduce Unemployment in Africa.

At 12:00 p.m., Robert Serry, UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process and Personal Representative of the Secretary-General to the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestine Authority (Gaza), will be the guest at the noon briefing.

At 1:00 p.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, there will be a press conference by the Spanish NGO "Women Together".

Today and tomorrow, the Deputy Secretary-General will attend an international conference focusing on Africas Development challenges, hosted by Cameroon on the occasion of the countrys Fiftieth Anniversary since independence.

Wednesday, 19 May

This morning, the Security Council will hear a briefing on its mission to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Thursday, 20 May

This morning, the Security Council will hear a briefing and then hold consultations on the African Union/UN Hybrid operation in Darfur (UNAMID).

At 12:00 p.m., Michael Alderstein, Executive Director of the Capital Master Plan, will be the guest at the noon briefing.

Today and tomorrow, the Deputy Secretary-General will be in Bologna, Italy, to represent the Secretary-General at a high-level international conference on the Continental integration of Africa as a prerequisite for political, social and economic development.

Friday, 21 May

The Secretary-General will be in Istanbul, Turkey, to where he will attend, tomorrow, the high-level international Conference on Somalia, co-hosted by the United Nations and the Government of Turkey. He will also meet with Turkish officials during his visit.

Today is the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development.

Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General

United Nations, SA-1B15

New York, NY 10017

Tel. 212-963-7162

Fax. 212-963-7055


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