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Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary General

 

 

 

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE NOON BRIEFING

 

 

BY FARHAN HAQ, ACTING DEPUTY SPOKESPERSON FOR SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON

WEDNESDAY, 24 NOVEMBER 2010

 

 

U.N. Headquarters will be closed on 25 November. The noon briefing will resume on Monday, 29 November; this web page will be updated as needed until briefings resume.

 

U.N. EMERGENCY RELIEF COORDINATOR IN HAITI HIGHLIGHTS NEED FOR STRONGER RESPONSE TO CHOLERA EPIDEMIC

  • The Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Valerie Amos, has been in Haiti since Tuesday to highlight the need for a much stronger international and national response to the cholera epidemic. Today, she met with President René Préval and visited a slum in Port-au-Prince.
     

  • On Tuesday, the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that, based on the speed with which people are being infected in Haiti, the outbreak could affect as many as 400,000 people. This is considered a worst case scenario, which is avoidable if the prevention and treatment responses reach people in the poor areas in Port-au-Prince and other towns and outlying areas in the country.
     

  • Amos said that this projection was a wakeup call. She added that there was a need to invest in cholera prevention nationwide in Haiti, to build more treatment centres and to increase the number of health workers on the ground to support the work already being done.

 

SECRETARY-GENERAL HAS SHARED CONCERNS ON D.P.R.K. ATTACK WITH PRESIDENT OF SECURITY COUNCIL

  • Asked about a leaked document concerning the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), the Spokesperson said the document in question had not been reviewed by senior officials and had no status, calling it a working-level initial draft. It had not been discussed by the UN Policy Committee.
     

  • He noted the UN’s long-standing concern for the suffering people of the DPRK, particularly women and children.
     

  • Asked about the Secretary-General’s talks with the President of the Security Council on Tuesday, the Spokesperson said that the Secretary-General had shared his concerns about the Tuesday artillery attack by the DPRK, on which the Secretary-General had issued a statement. He noted that it was up to the members of the Council to determine whether or when to meet on the matter.

 

SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR AFGHANISTAN WELCOMES CERTIFICATION OF RESULTS OF SEPTEMBER ELECTIONS

  • The Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan strongly welcomed today's certification by Afghanistan's Independent Election Commission (IEC) of the final results for 34 out of the 35 constituencies in the September elections.
     

  • In a statement, Staffan de Mistura said the UN supported the Commission's decision to take more time to finalise the certification of the results of the elections in Ghazni province.
     

  • He added that this final certification was the culmination of many months of dedicated work by the Independent Election Commission and the Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC).

 

TOP POLITICAL AFFAIRS OFFICIAL TO VISIT INDIA AND NEPAL

  • The Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, B. Lynn Pascoe, will be in South Asia at the beginning of December.  He will visit India and Nepal from 2-4 December.
     

  • Pascoe’s discussions in India will focus on a range of regional and international issues.
     

  • While in Nepal, he will assess efforts by Nepal’s political leaders toward concluding the key remaining tasks of the peace process and preparing adequately for the departure in January of the United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN).  This will be the Under-Secretary-General’s second visit to Nepal since the Security Council decided in September to conclude the UN Mission’s mandate as of 15 January 2011. 
     

  • He will be looking particularly at the status of decision-making and planning for reintegrating and rehabilitating combatants and for ensuring an orderly withdrawal of the Mission that leaves no critical gaps.

 

U.N. MISSIONS, PARTNERS WORKING TO COORDINATE SUPPORT FOR UPCOMING REFERENDA IN SUDAN

  • In Sudan, the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Georg Charpentier, spoke to reporters today about Sudanese returning to the south for the referendum and humanitarian contingency planning.
     

  • Charpentier said that the UN peacekeeping missions, UN agencies and humanitarian partners are working closely together to ensure coordinated support for any uncertainty concerning the upcoming referenda.
     

  • He said that, to ensure timely support, supplies in key life-saving sectors, including health, nutrition, water, and food, are being procured and pre-positioned in several places, in line with potential needs.
     

  • Asked about allegations being made between the parties in Sudan, the Spokesperson said that the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) urges the parties which signed the code of conduct for the Referendum and popular consultations to continue to abide by their commitments, create the best political environment possible for both Comprehensive Peace Agreement benchmarks, and to desist from accusing one another of wrongdoing.
     

  • Asked about the present of Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) forces in Sudan, the Spokesperson said that the UN is monitoring reports, and added that it was encouraged by the cooperation of Governments in the region in dealing with the LRA.

 

UNITED NATIONS WELCOMES A.U. MISSION IN SOMALIA’S EFFORT TO INVESTIGATE FIRING INCIDENT

  • In response to a question, the Spokesperson said that the United Nations was informed by the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) of the tragic incident that occurred on Tuesday, when an AMISOM convoy leaving Mogadishu airport base fired and killed two Somali civilians and injured several others.
     

  • Haq said that the United Nations regrets the loss of life and expresses condolences to the families of the victims and gives wishes for a speedy recovery to those who were injured.
     

  • The Spokesperson welcomed the swift action by the AMISOM Force Commander to undertake a thorough investigation into the incident. The United Nations will continue to work with AMISOM to implement measures in its military operations to avoid civilian casualties.

 

SECURITY COUNCIL HOLDS INTERACTIVE DEBATE ON PEACEKEEPING

  • The two Under-Secretaries-General dealing with UN peacekeeping operations, Alain Le Roy and Susana Malcorra, participated in an "interactive debate” on peacekeeping in the Security Council’s closed consultations today.
     

  • Before that, Council members also received an update on the work of the sanctions committee dealing with the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

 

HUMAN RIGHTS CHIEF EXPRESSES CONCERN FOR FATE OF RIGHTS DEFENDERS IN IRAN

  • The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, on Tuesday expressed renewed concern for the fate of human rights defenders in Iran, particularly Nasrin Sotoudeh, who had been on hunger strike for several weeks in Tehran’s Evin Prison. Pillay called for the Iranian authorities to review her case urgently and expedite her release.
     

  • She also urged the Iranian authorities to review the cases of five lawyers who were arrested earlier this month in Tehran on security charges. Although two have reportedly been subsequently released, the other three are believed to be still in custody.

 

GOODWILL AMBASSADORS TO HOLD SOCCER MATCH AGAINST POVERTY TO AID HAITI AND PAKISTAN

  • UNDP’s Goodwill Ambassadors Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane announced that the 8th Annual Match Against Poverty will channel funds into recovery efforts for the catastrophic disasters that hit Haiti and Pakistan this year.
     

  • This year’s match will be held in partnership with the Olympiakos Football Club in Greece on December 15th. As in previous years, the Goodwill Ambassadors will mobilize their team from across Europe to take on an all-star team from Olympiakos in a friendly match as part of the global effort to reduce poverty and achieve the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

 

THE WEEK AHEAD AT THE UNITED NATIONS[1]
27 November-3 December 2010

Monday, 29 November

 

Today is the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. A Special Meeting will take place in Conference Room 2 (NLB) from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  The meeting will be followed by a performance by the East Jerusalem-based Ashtar Theatre, entitled “The Gaza Monologues”.  At 3:00 p.m., the General Assembly will open its annual debate on the agenda item “The question of Palestine”.  At 6:00 p.m., the opening of an UNRWA exhibit “Summer Games in Gaza” will take place in the North-East Gallery (Public Lobby). 

 

Today and until 10 December, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will hold the sixteenth session of its Conference of the Parties (COP-16) in Cancun, Mexico.

 

Today, the Security Council is expected to adopt a resolution on DRC sanctions. It will also hold consultations on its 1718 Committee and its 751/1907 Committee.

 

Tuesday, 30 November

 

The Secretary-General will be in Astana, Kazakhstan, where he will address, tomorrow, the opening of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Summit.

 

This morning, the Security Council will hold consultations on Cyprus.

 

The guest at the Noon Briefing will be John Ging, Director of Operations for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency in Gaza.

 

Wednesday, 1 December

 

Today, the United States will assume the monthly rotating Presidency of the Security Council.

 

At 11:00 a.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, there will be a press conference to launch the World Economic Situation and Prospects Report.

 

The guest at the Noon Briefing will be Mike Smith, Assistant Secretary-General and Director of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate. He will brief correspondents on the issue of "bringing terrorists to justice", a requirement of Security Council Resolution 1373, and a special event taking place around this theme at United Nations Headquarters, from 1-3 December.

 

Today is World AIDS day.

 

Thursday, 2 December

 

At 11:00 a.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, there will be a press conference by the Human Security Report Project at Simon Fraser University to launch their new report. The press conference is sponsored by the Canadian Mission.

 

Friday, 3 December

 

At 1:15 p.m., in the Dag Hammarskjold Library Auditorium, there will be a press conference by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) about the global economic crisis.

 

Today is the International Day of Persons with Disability.


 

[1]This document is for planning purposes only and is current as of  DATE \@ "HH:mm" 13:20  DATE \@ "dddd, dd MMMM, yyyy" Wednesday, 24 November, 2010. 

 

 

  

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