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United Nations Daily Highlights, 10-07-02

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

FARHAN HAQ

ASSOCIATE

SPOKESPERSON FOR SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON

U.N. HEADQUARTERS, NEW YORK

Friday, July 2, 2010

SECRETARY-GENERAL CONDEMNS SUICIDE ATTACK IN LAHORE

The

Secretary-General strongly

condemns the suicide attack at the Data Ganj Baksh shrine in Lahore, Pakistan, which has reportedly claimed the lives of several dozen people and left many more injured.

The deliberate targeting of a crowded place of worship makes this particularly vicious. The Secretary-General extends his heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government and people of Pakistan.

GENERAL ASSEMBLY TO VOTE ON LANDMARK RESOLUTION ON SYSTEM-WIDE COHERENCE

Later this afternoon, the

General Assembly is to consider a landmark resolution on system-wide coherence, which includes the establishment of UN Women a new composite United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women.

The

Secretary-General, who has returned from New York, will address the General Assembly. He will say that, by bringing together four parts of the UN system dedicated to

womens issues, Member States have created a much stronger voice for women and for gender equality at the global level.

He will add that the UN system will now be able to significantly step up its support to national efforts to advance gender equality and womens empowerment.

NEPALESE PARTIES ENCOURAGED TO INTENSIFY EFFORTS AT FORMING CONSENSUS GOVERNMENT

In a

statement issued on Thursday night concerning the resignation of Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal, the

Secretary-General encouraged all parties in

Nepal to intensify their efforts towards the formation of a consensus government that would prioritize the implementation of all peace process commitments.

The Secretary-General also urges speedy progress on the issue of the integration and rehabilitation of Maoist army personnel.

SECRETARY-GENERAL REAFFIRMS UNITED NATIONS COMMITMENT TO SOMALIA

In a

statement issued on Thursday night concerning the fiftieth anniversary of Somalias independence, the

Secretary-General commended the courage of the people of Somalia and reaffirmed that the United Nations will continue to support them to overcome the serious challenges they face and to achieve their dream of living in peace, stability, and prosperity.

The Secretary-General invites all Somalis to reflect back on that founding moment in their history when the people of Somalia looked to the future of their nation with pride and great expectation. It is that vision of a united, strong and prosperous Somali nation that should direct the present and future.

Also, the

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

says that despite the continuing deterioration in

Somalia, the latest data shows that the flow of refugees into most neighbouring countries has decreased considerably compared to the same time period last year.

However, UNHCR says that the reasons for this drop are not safer or more stable circumstances. In fact, the situation is worsening and everyday violence and human rights abuses continue to displace thousands of civilians.

The agency estimates that more than 200,000 Somalis have been forced to leave their homes this year alone, with most becoming displaced internally.

After

Afghanistan and

Iraq, Somalia is generating the largest number of refugees in the world. There are now almost 600,000 Somali refugees in the region.

U.N. SPECIAL COORDINATOR FOR LEBANON: UNIFILS FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT MUST BE RESPECTED

The

UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon,

Michael Williams, met with the Speaker of the Parliament, Nabih Berri, today, and they discussed Security Council

resolution 1701. The

Secretary-Generals latest report on that resolution was released to the

Security Council last night.

Williams told Berri that he was concerned about incidents that occurred in south

Lebanon earlier in the week. The freedom of movement of the

UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) was violated and UN troop-contributing countries are quite concerned. Williams insisted that the freedom of movement of UNIFIL must be fully respected.

Speaker Berri and Williams agreed that we should work hard to prevent any recurrence of the problems of the past week and that all parties must be involved in trying to defuse these tensions.

U.N. ENVOY HELD USEFUL MEETINGS ON WESTERN SAHARA SETTLEMENT

The Secretary-Generals Personal Envoy for

Western Sahara,

Christopher Ross, has visited the capitals of the Group of Friends of Western Sahara over the past week, to consult on the best means to advance the negotiations toward a mutually acceptable settlement and to solicit their concrete advice and renewed support in this regard. He has visited London, Paris, and Madrid, is continuing to Washington, and will visit Moscow at a later date.

Ross said that his meetings have been very useful, reflecting a fresh interest in moving beyond the status quo and finding a solution.

The members of the Group of Friends with whom he has met to date have all expressed a readiness to work with him and the parties to ensure the success of future negotiations through substantive engagement. He has also found unanimous agreement on the need to intensify work on confidence-building measures, including the resumption of family visits by air, the early inauguration of family visits by road, and rapid consideration of other confidence building measures that the

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has proposed.

Asked when Rosss latest round of travels had begun, the Spokesperson said it was on 21 June.

U.N. REFUGEE CHIEF CALLS FOR SUPPORT FOR KYRGYZSTANS RECONCILIATION EFFORTS

The

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees,

António Guterres, has

wrapped up his visit to

Kyrgyzstan, ending it with a call for support for the countrys reconciliation efforts.

Guterres had been in the countrys south on Thursday, where he met returned refugees and victims of conflict in the city of Jalalabad, before returning to the capital, Bishkek.

Many of those he spoke with appealed for better security, noting that they felt unsafe and feared allowing their children outside.

Speaking at a press conference in Bishkek, Guterres said it was important that calm prevailed so that reconciliation efforts could gain ground, and he pledged the UN Refugee Agencys support in providing effective humanitarian aid, distributed in a non-discriminatory manner.

Guterres also met again with President Rosa Otunbayeva on Thursday; he later said he was encouraged by her strong commitment to reconciliation.

Asked about UN efforts in Kyrgyzstan, the Spokesperson said that the United Nations was working both on the humanitarian track, dealing in particular with the needs of those displaced, and on the political track, with the Secretary-Generals Special Representative and Head of the

UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia,

Miroslav Jenca, leading the efforts on the ground to help bring the communities together.

Asked whether an inquiry into the start of the conflict would be needed, he added that the priority for now was to deal with the people who had been displaced by the fighting, although the United Nations would continue to monitor the situation.

OTHER ANNOUNCEMENTS

SECURITY COUNCIL ADOPTED PROGRAMME OF WORK FOR JULY: In their first meeting during July, the

Security Council adopted its programme of work for the month.

WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME SCALING UP OPERATIONS IN NIGER: The

World Food Programme (WFP) is

scaling up operations in drought-hit

Niger in the light of a shocking new Government survey which shows malnutrition rates among young children at emergency levels. WFP is doubling the size of its operations and ramping up already significant interventions, to take even swifter action to protect these children. It will now be reaching 4.7 million people, up from some 2.3 million people.

UNITED NATIONS WORKING TO DISTRIBUTE NEW AID TO GAZA: Asked about aid going into

Gaza, the Spokesperson noted that the first truckloads of the Turkish flotilla cargo entered Gaza on Wednesday. The United Nations is working on distributing those goods to appropriate beneficiaries. He said that the rest of the cargo is scheduled to enter Gaza in the weeks ahead.

NEXT REPORT ON IMPLEMENTATION OF GOLDSTONE FINDINGS TO BE IN SAME FORMAT AS FIRST: Asked about the

Secretary-Generals next report to the

General Assembly on the implementation of the findings of the

Goldstone report, the Spokesperson said that it was expected to be in the same format as his earlier report, which transmitted the views of the respective parties on how they had followed up on the Goldstone report.

EVENTS ARE PLANNED TO MARK SIX-MONTH ANNIVERSARY OF EARTHQUAKE IN HAITI: Asked how the United Nations would commemorate the six-month anniversary of the earthquake in

Haiti, the Spokesperson said there would be some events to mark the occasion, including a visit to Haiti by the

UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator,

John Holmes.

SRI LANKAN MINISTERS COMMENTS DO NOT REFLECT OF OFFICIAL POLICY: Asked about reported remarks attributed to a Cabinet minister in

Sri Lanka, the Spokesperson recalled that the Government of Sri Lanka had said that those remarks did not reflect the Governments policy and added that a further clarification might be forthcoming.

  • *******

    THE WEEK AHEAD AT THE UNITED NATIONS[1]

    5 9 July

    Sunday, 4 July

    The Secretary-General will attend the 31st Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), which begins in Montego Bay, Jamaica. While in Jamaica, the Secretary-General will also have bilateral meetings with Heads of Government and regional organizations.

    Monday, 5 July

    The UN Headquarters in New York will be closed in observance of the U.S. Independence Day holiday.

    Tuesday, 6 July

    The Queen of the United Kingdom, Elizabeth II, will visit the UN Headquarters in New York where she will address the General Assembly.

    The Secretary-General will attend the evening screening of No Woman, No Cry and take part in a panel discussion with Ms. Christy Turlington Burns and others, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The film focuses on the stories of at-risk pregnant women in four parts of the world and is part of a global campaign to save the lives of millions of mothers and children.

    Wednesday, 7 July

    The Security Council will hold an open debate on the issue of protection of civilians in armed conflict. The UN Under-Secretary-General and Emergency Relief Coordinator, John Holmes, will brief the Council.

    At 1:00 p.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium at UN Headquarters in New York, there will be a press conference with the Permanent Representative of Norway, Ambassador Morten Wetland; the ILO Executive Director of Social Protection, Assane Diop, and the President of El Salvadors Central Reserve Bank, Carlos Acevedo, on the Global Jobs Pact, created in response to the financial and economic crisis, to help achieve the Millennium Development Goals. The Briefing will be following a Roundtable at the Substantive Session of ECOSOC.

    Thursday, 8 July

    Friday, 9 July

    At 12:30 p.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium at UN Headquarters in New York, there will be a press conference with the Chairman of the First Preparatory Committee for the United Nations Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), Ambassador Roberto Garcia Moritan of Argentina, who will brief correspondents on the forthcoming ATT meeting; 12-23 July in New York. The four sessions of the Preparatory Committees in 2010 and 2011 are to make recommendations to the 2012 Conference on the elements that would be needed to attain an effective and balanced legally binding instrument on the highest possible common international standards for the transfer of conventional arms.

    [1]This document is for planning purposes only and is current as of DATE \@ "HH:mm" 13:20 DATE \@ "dddd, dd MMMM, yyyy" Friday, 02 July, 2010.

    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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