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Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General

Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary General

GENERAL ASSEMBLY WRAPS UP HIGH-LEVEL SESSION

  • Today marks the last day of the General Debate of the 69th Session of the General Assembly. The Secretary-General will wrap up his series of high-level bilateral meetings this afternoon, including a meeting with the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu.
  • Later today, the Secretary-General will leave for Geneva and is expected back in New York on Friday (3 October).

SECRETARY-GENERAL AND SECURITY COUNCIL CALL FOR QUICK FORMATION OF UNITY GOVERNMENT IN AFGHANISTAN

  • Earlier today, the Secretary-General spoke by phone to Dr. Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai, the new President of Afghanistan, and Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, who will be the Chief Executive Officer of the Government of National Unity. The Secretary-General congratulated them on their appointments and called for the new government to be formed quickly.
  • Late yesterday, the Security Council also issued a press statement, calling on the new Government to effectively address the issues facing the country, including security, good governance, human rights and economic recovery.

VIOLENCE IN SYRIA CONTINUES TO DISPLACE PEOPLE, WARNS U.N. AID CHIEF

  • The Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Valerie Amos, briefed the Security Council today on Syria, telling them that people there continue to be subjected to further displacement and deprivation on a daily basis. Ms. Amos said that over the past two weeks, ISIL forces have advanced in northern Aleppo and more than 160,000 people fled into Turkey just in a few days.
  • She added that the other parties to the conflict also continue to show an utter disregard for international humanitarian and human rights law, with barrel bombs, car bombs and mortars continuing to cause civilian deaths and injuries.
  • Ms. Amos said that, despite the dangers they have faced, the United Nations and its partners continue to reach millions of people in need. Last month, the World Food Programme (WFP) and its partners delivered aid to 4.1 million people.
  • The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and its partners, meanwhile, provided access to clean water to 16.5 million people. We have her full remarks in my office.

EBOLA: HEAD OF U.N. EMERGENCY MISSION TO TRAVEL TO WEST AFRICA

  • The advance team of the United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER) continues to establish the headquarters of the operation in Accra, Ghana. The Head of the Mission, Anthony Banbury, is expected to leave for West Africa tomorrow. During his mission, he will visit affected countries to see first-hand where the greatest needs are, and discuss with the governments and other partners the priorities for filling the gaps.
  • Today, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) revealed that at least 3,700 children have lost one or both parents to Ebola since the start of the outbreak in West Africa. Many are also being rejected by their surviving relatives for fear of infection.

SOUTH SUDAN: OVER 9,000 DISPLACED PEOPLE RELOCATED TO U.N. PROTECTION SITE IN JUBA

  • The United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) reported that more than 9,000 displaced civilians have moved voluntarily from the its Tomping Compound in the capital, Juba, to a protection-of-civilians site adjacent to the United Nations House since it opened in June.
  • The number of uprooted still living in the Tomping site now falls under 4,000.  Overall, UNMISS is protecting some 97,000 civilians at its sites across the country.
  • Yesterday, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative, Ellen Loej, visited Bor, the capital of Jonglei State, where she met with government officials, including the caretaker governor and community leaders representing some 2,700 displaced people living in the UNMISS protection of civilians site outside Bor Town.
  • The World Food Programme (WFP) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) are wrapping up their 25th joint emergency mission to deliver lifesaving supplies and services in the most remote and conflict-hit regions of South Sudan.
  • The joint teams are composed of experts in food, health, nutrition, child protection, water, sanitation and hygiene, and education. They bring assistance via plane and helicopter and have now reached more than 500,000 people, including 100,000 children under the age of five.
  • With support from logistics and telecommunications specialists, they provide a lifeline to desperate communities in the three conflict-affected states - Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity.

MYANMAR: STATUS VERIFICATION OF DISPLACED PEOPLE COMMENCES IN RAKHINE

  • The Office of the Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on Myanmar noted that a status verification exercise has recently commenced in Rakhine as part of the implementation of the Rakhine Committee Action Plan. This process is ongoing, and it is hoped that a significant number of the members of the Rohingya community currently inside the camps for displaced people, as well as those outside, will become eligible for citizenship following this verification exercise. 
  • Meanwhile, in respect of those persons who may not be deemed qualified for citizenship, it is hoped that they will continue to be treated fully in accordance with established international humanitarian and human rights principles.
  • The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) says that the number of children orphaned by Ebola is likely to double by mid-October.