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United Nations Daily Highlights, 10-06-18
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HIGHLIGHTS OF THE NOON BRIEFING
BY MARTIN NESIRKY
SPOKESPERSON FOR SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON
U.N. HEADQUARTERS, NEW YORK
Friday, June 18, 2010
U.N. AGENCIES RUSHING AID TO CIVILIANS AFFECTED BY KYRGYZSTAN INTER-ETHNIC VIOLENCE
The World Health Organization (WHO) is following the crisis in Kyrgyzstan, and while the conflict area is still not fully accessible, WHO is working with a planning figure of around one million persons directly or indirectly affected by the events, with approximately 300,000 refugees in Uzbekistan.
In terms of public health priorities, WHO has two major concerns. One of those is to address the health needs of women that have been subjected to gender-based violence. Unconfirmed reports from several sources pointed out that this has been an issue and that atrocities targeting the Uzbek minorities in Kyrgyzstan have been committed. Several cases of rapes had also been reported among the Uzbek refugee women in Uzbekistan.
The second issue was linked to the fact that the majority of the refugees in Uzbekistan were elderly, women and children, meaning that the specific health needs of those categories needed to be prioritized.
The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) says that 30 humanitarian cargo flights have landed in Osh and Jalal-Abad with 780 tons of medical supplies.
It adds that two inter-agency assessment missions have been carried out in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. In Uzbekistan, the assessment mission had been conducted by the World Food Programme, the United Nations Refugee Agency, the World Health Organization, the United Nations Childrens Fund, UNAIDS, the United Nations Population Fund and OCHA, in close coordination with the local authorities. The assessment missions results will be analyzed on Saturday and they help formulate an overall response strategy.
The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
says that situation in southern Kyrgyzstan remains fragile and tense, with continued sporadic reports of violence and difficult or limited access for humanitarian workers to many parts of Osh, neighbouring villages and other parts of southern Kyrgyzstan.
UNHCR will launch an airlift into Kyrgyzstan this weekend. Two chartered Ilyushin-76 cargo planes carrying 80 tonnes of relief items were expected to arrive in Osh. This initial assistance would help cover the immediate needs of about 15,000 persons. The first flight, with 800 tents, was expected to land in Osh on Saturday, while the second one was expected on Sunday.
Meanwhile, the sixth relief flight into Uzbekistan was expected to land soon. UNHCR says that this would complete the initial airlift of some 240 tonnes of relief supplies to Uzbekistan. The distribution of aid will be closely coordinated between UNHCR, the Uzbek Government and the United Nations country team in Uzbekistan.
The World Food Programme (WFP)
has been able to move food from its warehouse in Osh and will be increasing its staff there over the coming days. So far, it has moved approximately 100 metric tonnes of food that will be distributed by WFP and partners to about 13,000 persons. This was in addition to the 50 metric tonnes that WFP had provided for distribution to the International Committee for the Red Cross.
WFP is waiting for the green light to fly in 80 metric tonnes of high energy biscuits into Kyrgyzstan and another 40 metric tonnes of high-energy biscuits into Uzbekistan.
In addition, WFP was also exploring at alternatives to using the warehouse in Osh, as it had some difficulties reaching it.
BAN KI-MOON IS ENCOURAGED BY AFGHANISTANS PREPAREDNESS FOR NATIONAL ASSEMBLY ELECTIONS
report to the Security Council on the UN mission in Afghanistan is out as a document.
In it, he reports that the overall security situation has not improved. In spite of the unstable security environment, he notes the reporting period witnessed several positive developments in the civilian sectors since the Government of Afghanistan took the lead in advancing the political process.
He says he is encouraged by the state of preparedness of the Afghan electoral institutions for the Afghan national assembly elections still on schedule to be held on 18 September. The Secretary-General is particularly pleased that the preliminary list of candidates contains the names of over 400 women. Adequate security must be provided to these women to ensure that they have equal access to the electoral process, he says.
The Security Council is scheduled to discuss Afghanistan on June 30.
SECURITY COUNCIL IS BRIEFED ON THE WORK ON U.N. TRIBUNALS
The Security Council is holding an open meeting this morning to hear briefings by Prosecutors
Serge Brammertz of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and Hassan Jallow of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). They are updating the Council on recent developments in their investigations, courtroom proceedings, member states cooperation, as well as their respective offices completion strategies.
The two prosecutors intend to hold a joint press encounter at the Security Council stakeout position after the meeting.
The Council is also being briefed by the Tribunals presidents,
Judge Patrick Robinson of the ICTY and Judge Dennis Byron of the ICTR. We have in my office copies of the speeches by both prosecutors and Tribunals presidents.
And later this afternoon, Council members will be holding closed consultations on Somalia and other matters.
U.N. AID AGENCIES LEADING RELIEF OPERATIONS IN FLOOD-HIT NORTHERN MYANMAR
The Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said that for the past five days, the Northern Rakhine State in Myanmar was
facing continuous rains that had flooded several areas including in Maungdaw, Buthidaung and Rathedaung.
The population of these three cities together is around 900,000 but there is currently no figure concerning the affected. More than 85 villages had been affected and close to 40 villages were severely flooded. Landslides had been reported and roads and bridges had either been cut or damaged.
An interagency mission had carried out a rapid assessment on 16 June while a meeting was being held today between local authorities and United Nations agencies to review the results of the assessment and list the needs that have been identified. The United Nations Refugee Agency, the World Food Programme, the Myanmar Red Cross and non-governmental organizations were currently leading the operations.
U.N AND HAITIAN POLICE SQUADS ARREST 30 FUGITIVE PRISONERS
The UN Mission for Stabilization in Haiti (MINUSTAH) and the Haitian have jointly conducted a sweeping operation in a Port-au-Prince camp for displaced persons, which led to the arrest of 30 criminals who had escaped from local prisons in the wake of the 12 January earthquake. The Mission says the operation sought to stamp out a recent upsurge of criminal violence in the camps.
This month WFP will be reaching 30,000 workers in Food and Cash for Work programmes and aims to increase that to 70,000 in the month ahead. As each labourer receives rations for a family of 5, this programme will be reaching 350,000 Haitians.
U.N SPECIAL COORDINATOR WILL SEEK TO VERIFY DETAILS OF ISRAELI EASING OF GAZA BLOCKADE: In response to a question, Nesirky recalled that the Secretary-general has said he is "encouraged" by Israel's easing of the Gaza blockade. The Secretary-General has also stressed the need for more progress. In that regard, he has instructed the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, to contact the Israeli authorities urgently to look into the practical details of the Israeli decision. It is in that interaction that the United Nations will be in a position to verify its implementation, Nesirky said, adding that the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) will also have a role in that effort.
OUTER SPACE AFFAIRS COMMITTEE CONCLUDES DISCUSSIONS: The United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) has concluded its deliberations at its 53rd session, from 9 to 18 June, on ways and means to maintain outer space for peaceful purposes and ensure that space technology and its applications continue to benefit many areas critical to all humanity. Delegates concluded their debates over crucial issues such as water resources and climate change, and reached an agreement to issue a report on international cooperation in the use of space-derived geospatial data for sustainable development.
THE WEEK AHEAD AT THE UNITED NATIONS
21-25 June 2010
Sunday, 20 June
Today is World Refugee Day. In New York, the Empire State Building has agreed to turn its lighting blue from 9 pm on Sunday 20 June until 2 am the next day. The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees is setting up a live video link to talk to refugees in Kuala Lumpur and Damascus about their experiences as urban refugees (http://wrdlive.org/backup/). Activities to mark the occasion include a press conference with the High Commissioner, who will also address an audience at the UN pavilion at the World Expo in Shanghai, China.
Monday, 21 June
The guests at the Spokespersons Noon Briefing will be the Assistant Secretary-General for Policy Planning, Bob Orr; the Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development at the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Jomo Kwame Sundaram; and the Assistant Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme and Director of the Bureau for Development Policy, Olav Kjorven. They will give a preview of the UN Secretary-General's messages for the G-20 summit, the MDGs Report 2010, the impact of the economic crisis on the most vulnerable, and other issues.
The Administrator of the UN Development Programme, Helen Clark, will attend the 2010 Annual Session of the UNDP/UNFPA Executive Board in Geneva (21 June 2 July).
Tuesday, 22 June
At 1:15 pm, in the Delegates Dining Room, the UN Development Programme and the Permanent Mission of Nepal will host a high-level luncheon on the role of Capacity Development in Scaling up Energy Access for MDGs Achievement, presenting an effective energy strategy which is bringing clean energy to poor communities in remote areas. At 3:00 pm, there will be a press conference in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium.
At 2:00 p.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, there will be a background briefing on the Millennium Development Goals Report 2010. This will be done by a senior official from the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, one of the lead authors of the report.
At 3:00 p.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, there will be a press conference by the UN Development Programme about bringing energy services to the worlds poor, highlighting a replicable solution from Nepal. Participants include the Assistant Administrator of the UN Development Programme and Director of the Bureau for Development Policy, Olav Kjorven; the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Nepal to the United Nations, Gyan Chandra Acharya; and the Project Manager of the Rural Energy Development Programme of the Alternative Energy Promotion Centre in Nepals Ministry of Environment, Kiran Man Singh.
Wednesday, 23 June
At 11:00 a.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will brief the press on his vision for the G20 summit, and will launch the Millennium Development Goals Report 2010. This annual assessment of regional progress towards the Goals reflects the most up-to-date data compiled by over 25 UN and international agencies, coordinated by UN DESA. The report has been designated by the General Assembly as an official input to the September MDG Summit.
At 12:00 p.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, John Holmes, will hold a press conference to present OCHA's latest report on the exploitation of women.
At 2:00 p.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, there will be a press conference with ministers from Denmark, India and the United Kingdom, in conjunction with the Global Compact Leaders Summit, to discuss the role of Governments in engaging the private sector for the achievement of the MDGs.
Thursday, 24 June
At 11:00 a.m., at the Mariott Marquis Hotel on Times Square, the Secretary-General will participate in the opening press conference of the Global Compact Leaders Summit.
The UN Security Council is expected to hold a retreat in Istanbul, Turkey.
Friday, 25 June
At 11:00 a.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, the President of ECOSOC, Hamidon Ali, and the Director of the Office for ECOSOC Support and Coordination, Nikhil Seth, will give a curtain-raiser press briefing on the 2010 ECOSOC High-Level Segment (28 June 2 July).
Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General
United Nations, SA-1B15
New York, NY 10017
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