HIGHLIGHTS OF THE NOON BRIEFING
BY EDUARDO DEL BUEY,
DEPUTY SPOKESPERSON FOR SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON
THURSDAY, 25 JULY 2013
SECRETARY-GENERAL DISCUSSES SYRIA, MIDDLE EAST, D.R.CONGO WITH U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE JOHN KERRY
- The Secretary-General met with US Secretary of State John Kerry this morning. In remarks to the press before that meeting, he said that they would discuss Syria, the Middle East and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, among other matters.
- On Syria, the Secretary-General emphasized the need to bring the conflict to an end, with more than 100,000 people having been killed and millions more either being displaced or becoming refugees in neighbouring countries.
- He added that the head of the chemical weapons investigation team, Dr. Ake Sellström, and the High Representative for Disarmament, Angela Kane, have just visited Syria and met senior officials of the Syrian Government to discuss the modalities of the investigation. He expects that they will report back to him shortly.
- On the Middle East, the Secretary-General commended Secretary Kerry’s consistent and principled engagement to revive the peace process for a two-State solution.
SECRETARY-GENERAL CALLS FOR END OF FIGHTING IN EASTERN D.R.C AND RETURN TO POLITICAL TRACK
- The Secretary-General spoke this morning at the Security Council debate on the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Great Lakes region.
- He said he was deeply concerned about the current hostilities between the M23 movement and the Congolese armed forces. He added that all Parties needed to return as soon as possible to the Kampala talks and urged the signatories of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the region to jointly and individually respect their commitments.
- He called on the international community to be even more determined to lift people of the region from the oppression of insecurity, human rights abuses and poverty.
- The Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the region, Mary Robinson, said that the Framework was a promise of peace, security, cooperation and development. But, she added, efforts will bear fruit only if all actors involved, at the local, national, regional and international levels, push in the same direction and if there is an immediate cessation of hostilities in the eastern DRC.
- The Security Council also adopted a Presidential Statement during the debate.
HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS CONDEMNS ASSASSINATION OF OPPOSITION POLITICIAN IN TUNISIA
- The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, strongly condemned the assassination of a leading opposition politician in Tunisia and urged the country's people and politicians to form a united front against attempts to derail the country's democratic transition.
- Mohamed Brahmi, a member of the National Constituent Assembly, was shot dead in front of his house in a Tunis suburb on Thursday morning, in the presence of his daughter.
- Ms. Pillay called upon the authorities to immediately launch a prompt and transparent investigation to ensure that the people who carried out this crime are held accountable.