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United Nations Daily Highlights, 10-06-17

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

Thursday, June 17, 2010

SECRETARY-GENERAL ENCOURAGED BY ISRAELI REVIEW OF GAZA POLICY

The

Secretary-General is encouraged that the Israeli government is reviewing its policy towards

Gaza, and he hopes that today's decision by the Israeli security cabinet is a real step towards meeting needs in Gaza.

The Secretary-General has asked his envoy,

Robert Serry, to immediately engage the Israeli government to learn more about the decision and the additional measures and steps of implementation still required.

The United Nations continues to seek a fundamental change in policy as agreed by the Quartet, so that humanitarian assistance, commercial goods and people are able to flow through functioning open crossings, and so that reconstruction can take place.

The United Nations has demonstrated the integrity of its programming and stands ready to scale up its efforts to help Gaza recover and rebuild if enabled to do so.

Asked about a possible inquiry into the 31 May flotilla incident, the Spokesperson said that the Secretary-Generals proposal for an international inquiry remains on the table and he hopes for a positive Israeli response.

U.N. REFUGEE AGENCY: ESTIMATED 300,000 PEOPLE DISPLACED BY VIOLENCE IN KYRGYZSTAN

The

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

says that the violence in southern

Kyrgyzstan there has forced an estimated 300,000 people to flee their homes and seek shelter elsewhere in the country. This is in addition to some 100,000 people who have fled to neighbouring

Uzbekistan since 10 June.

Most of the

internally displaced are being sheltered by family and host communities, but some 40,000 people are in need of shelter, UNHCR says. The figures for internal displacement have been provided by the Kyrgyz Interim Government and non-governmental organizations on the ground.

UNHCR says that the situation in the town of Osh and nearby villages appears to be volatile and sporadic clashes have reportedly taken place around the town of Jalalabad, where the situation on the ground is tense.

Asked about UN efforts to contact the different parties on the ground about the violence, including reports of the killings of ethnic Uzbeks, the Spokesperson said that the

Secretary-General has spoken to a wide range of people, including Roza Otunbaeva, the head of the interim government, and has called very clearly on all sides to show restraint.

Nesirky said that the United Nations is aware of different reports about the violence, on which the Special Representative on the ground,

Miroslav Jenca, is trying to obtain further information. Regardless of responsibility for the violence, he said, the main task is to ensure that all vulnerable people are protected and not placed under further threat.

Asked about the situation at the Uzbek-Kyrgyz border, the Spokesperson said that the Secretary-General had called Uzbek President Islam Karimov on Wednesday and had told the President that he highly appreciated Uzbekistan's constructive efforts in addressing the alarming humanitarian situation in Kyrgyzstan, particularly in opening the border for refugees and providing for their care despite limited resources. The Secretary-General was appreciative of efforts to allow access so that aid agencies could do their work.

Asked about the figures for displaced people, Nesirky said that UNHCR had received an estimate of 300,000 internally displaced people from the Kyrgyzstan Government and local NGOs, and had been informed by the Uzbek authorities of 100,000 fleeing into Uzbekistan.

Now, he said, the United Nations was trying to get aid into Uzbekistan and also into the southern part of Kyrgyzstan, which remains dangerous.

He said that the

World Food Programme (WFP) has

distributed food to a group of 13,000 people. WFP says that transporting aid from the capital, Bishkek, is difficult, as roads arent safe.

At the same time, the Spokesperson said, UNHCR says that it and other UN humanitarian agencies currently have no access to southern Kyrgyzstan, but despite this, UNHCR has made available its stocks of relief items to the International Committee of the Red Cross for distribution to some 10,000 displaced people in Osh.

He later added that a UN security assessment in the south is under way today and UNHCR hopes this assessment will allow operations to commence in some areas in Osh by this weekend. In addition, a UNHCR airlift to Kyrgyzstan is scheduled to begin this weekend.

U.N. POLITICAL CHIEF WRAPS UP VISIT TO SRI LANKA; STRESSES KEY PRIORITIES FOR POST-CONFLICT STAGE

In Colombo today, the

Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs,

B. Lynn Pascoe, wrapped up his two-day visit to

Sri Lanka, where he met with President Mahinda Rajapaksa, and held discussions with cabinet officials responsible for foreign relations, defence, and economic development, as well as the Attorney General.

He also met with leaders of the political opposition, Tamil and Muslim representatives, civil society organizations including human rights and womens groups, and members of the diplomatic corps.

In a press conference wrapping up the visit, Pascoe reiterated the three key priorities in the post-conflict stage: urgent steps toward political reconciliation; a successful conclusion of the resettlement process and efforts to bring economic opportunity to the former war zones in the north; and accountability for allegations of humanitarian and human rights violations during the conflict.

In conclusion, Pascoe emphasized the strong friendship and partnership between the United Nations and Sri Lanka, adding that the two sides are engaged on many difficult and sensitive issues in this post-conflict period to help build a better future for the people of Sri Lanka.

SECRETARY-GENERAL CALLS FOR INCREASED FIGHT AGAINST TRANSNATIONAL CRIME

The

Secretary-General addressed the

High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on Transnational Organized Crime earlier this morning.

In his

remarks, he said that the international communitys ability to deliver justice in cases of transnational organized crime is not evolving as quickly as the criminals skill at evading justice. As a result, states and markets are being infiltrated, police and armies are being out-gunned and security is under threat.

The Secretary-General urged Member States to use all lawful means available to help law enforcement transcend borders, just as criminal networks do.

SECURITY COUNCIL DEEPLY CONCERNED ABOUT GROWING NUMBER OF ATTACKS ON SCHOOLS AND PUPILS

The

Security Council adopted a Presidential Statement on Wednesday evening at the end of its day-long meeting on

children and armed conflict.

In that statement, among other things, the Council expressed deep concern about the growing number of attacks or threats of attacks against schools and educational facilities, and teachers and pupils. It calls upon all parties to armed conflict to cease immediately these violations of international humanitarian law.

The Council also welcomed the steps taken by the

Secretary-General in the implementation of resolution 1882 (2009), by including in the annexes of his report those parties to armed conflict that engage in patterns of killing and maiming of children, as well as in rape and other sexual violence, in situations of armed conflict.

SECRETARY-GENERAL FULLY COMMITTED TO UPHOLDING U.N. SYSTEM OF ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE

Asked about a recent media report concerning compliance by the

Secretary-General and his senior officials with the work of the

UN Dispute Tribunal, the Spokesperson affirmed that the Secretary-General is fully committed to upholding the system of administration of justice as prescribed by the

General Assembly.

The fact that the Organization has appealed decisions of the Dispute Tribunal does not in any way diminish or affect the respect held by the Organisation for the Dispute Tribunal or its decisions, he added. By filing appeals, the Secretary-General is exercising his rights under the administration of justice system with full respect for that system.

Nesirky noted that the current Dispute Tribunal system entered into force under the Secretary-General after being initially put in place by his predecessor.

OTHER ANNOUNCEMENTS

IRELAND RATIFIES U.N. CONVENTION AGAINST TRANSNATIONAL ORGANIZED CRIME: This morning, on the sidelines to the

High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on Transnational Organized Crime, Ireland ratified the UN

Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children. The Convention is the main international instrument in the fight against transnational organized crime and Ireland's ratifications bring the number of States Parties to the Convention to 156 and to the Protocol, 138.

  • ** The guests at the Spokespersons Noon Briefing on Thursday were the Administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP), Helen Clark, along with the Permanent Representatives of the United Kingdom and the Dominican Republic, Sir Mark Lyall Grant, and Federico Alberto Cuello Camilo, respectively. They spoke about UNDPs most recent report entitled What will it take to achieve the

    Millennium Development Goals? An International Assessment.

    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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