HIGHLIGHTS OF THE PRESS BRIEFING
BY FARHAN HAQ, ASSOCIATE SPOKESPERSON FOR SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON
FRIDAY, 6 SEPTEMBER 2013
SECRETARY-GENERAL, SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR SYRIA MEET LEADERS ON MARGINS OF G20 SUMMIT
- The Secretary-General spent Friday taking part in the G20 summit in St. Petersburg and meeting world leaders.
- He participated in G20 sessions that focused on growth, jobs and investment and attended a meeting organized by British Prime Minister David Cameron on the margins of the summit to highlight the need for more funding for aid for the humanitarian crisis in Syria.
- Among the leaders the Secretary-General met on Friday were the German Chancellor, the French President, the Turkish Prime Minister and the Indonesian President.
- The Secretary-General was accompanied at most of his meetings by the Joint Special Representative for Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi. Mr. Brahimi also attended lunch with a number of G20 foreign ministers hosted by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. The two men spoke to reporters after their meeting.
- The Secretary-General was scheduled to leave St. Petersburg early on Saturday and to return to New York the same day.
- Asked whether the Secretary-General had met in St. Petersburg with the Syrian Foreign Minster, the Spokesperson said he had not.
- In response to questions about possible military action, Haq said that the Secretary-General had repeatedly emphasized the importance of the UN Charter and he continues to do so.
- The Secretary-General and Mr. Brahimi continue their diplomatic efforts, and they remain convinced that it is more urgent than ever that a peaceful solution be found, he added.
U.N. ENVOY FOR SUDAN AND SOUTH SUDAN WELCOMES CONCLUSION OF SUMMIT BETWEEN TWO LEADERS
- The UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan, Haile Menkerios, welcomes the conclusion this week of the summit between President Omar al-Bashir of Sudan and President Salva Kiir of South Sudan.
- He commends the constructive spirit the presidents displayed at the summit and the agreement in relation to the transportation of oil, while urging them to find a compromise on the final status of Abyei as soon as possible.
U.N. REFUGEE AGENCY CONCERNED OVER SAFETY OF CIVILIANS IN CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
- The UN Refugee Agency said on Friday it is increasingly worried about the safety of civilians in the Central African Republic after its staff reported widespread lawlessness during a field trip to the north of the country.
- Last week, staff from the UN Refugee Agency and from the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) travelled to the town of Paoua, 500-kilometres north of the capital Bangui. They found seven villages burned to the ground and deserted – and an eighth village partially burned – with villagers hiding in the bush.
- The Refugee Agency said that local people spoke of physical assaults, extortion, looting, arbitrary arrest and torture by armed men.
- It calls again on the authorities in the Central African Republic, and on all armed groups, to protect civilians and make sure aid agencies can reach people in need.
DEPUTY SECRETARY-GENERAL EMPHASIZES IMPORTANCE OF FULLY FORMED CULTURE OF PEACE
- The Deputy Secretary-General spoke at the Friday morning high-level forum on the Culture of Peace, saying that, all too often we see blatant, often systemic violations of the principle of the dignity of every person. In Syria, he said, a tragic civil war has killed more than 100,000 people, displaced one third of the country’s population and inflamed sectarian tensions. To build a culture of peace, we must heed the lessons of these appalling numbers and conditions.
- The Deputy Secretary-General said that this is a moment in history when we need a Culture of Peace -- not just the absence of war, but a fully formed culture of peace -- so that we can pull together as a single human family to meet our shared challenges.
** The guest at today’s Noon Briefing was Valerie Amos, the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator. Ms. Amos, joining by video-link from Beirut, along with Robert Watkins, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon, briefed journalists on humanitarian aid in Syria.
THE WEEK AHEAD AT THE UNITED NATIONS
7 – 13 SEPTEMBER 2013
(This document is for planning purposes and is subject to change.)
Saturday, 7 September
There are no major events scheduled for today.
Sunday, 8 September
Today is International Literacy Day.
Monday, 9 September
At 10:00 a.m., in Conference Room B in the Conference Building (CB), there will be a meeting of the Group of Friends of Water on “Water and Disasters”, organized by the Permanent Mission of Tajikistan.
At 10:30 a.m., in the Trusteeship Council Chamber (CB), there will be the Franklin Delano Roosevelt International Disability Rights Award Ceremony, organized by the Permanent Mission of Spain, in cooperation with the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute and the Lantos Foundation for Human Rights and Justice. Her Majesty Queen Sofía of Spain will accept the award.
At 3:00 p.m., in conference Room B in the North Lawn Building (NLB), there will be a briefing on “Joint study on food security in Asia and the Pacific by the Asian Development Bank and Canada”, co-organized by the New York Liaison Offices of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
In Geneva, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) will hold the 19th session of the Committee on the Protection of the Rights of Migrant Workers and Members of their Families (CMW). The session will end on 13 September.
In Geneva, the Human Rights Council will hold the 24th session. The session will end on 27 September.
Tuesday, 10 September
Today is World Suicide Prevention Day.
At 12:20 p.m., in the Press Briefing Room in the Secretariat Building, there will be a press conference on the launch of the United Nations Development Group (UNDG) report entitled “One Million Voices: The World We Want”. Speakers will include the Secretary-General and Ms. Helen Clark, Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
At 3:00 p.m., in Conference Room 5 (NLB), there will be a briefing on “Every woman every child movement”, co-organized by the Permanent Missions of Bangladesh, Sweden and Zambia.
Wednesday, 11 September
At 10:30 a.m., in the Press Briefing Room, there will be a press conference by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA) to present new international migration statistics.
Thursday, 12 September
Today is United Nations Day for South-South Cooperation.
At 11:15 a.m., in the Press Briefing Room, there will be a press conference by the new UN Women Executive Director, Ms. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.
At 12:00 p.m., in the Press Briefing Room, Mr. Hervé Ladsous, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations will be the guest at the Noon Briefing.
In Geneva, there will be a press conference on the publication of the “Trade and Development Report 2013: Adjusting to the changing dynamics of the world economy” by Mukhisa Kituyi, the Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), under embargo until 12 September 5:00 pm GMT , 7:00 pm Geneva Time.
In Geneva, there will be a press conference on the current humanitarian crises in Syria and the Central African Republic by Kristalina Georgieva, EU Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis response.
Friday, 13 September
At 1:15 p.m., in Conference Room 6 (NLB), there will be a lecture series on Women, Peace and Security on “The Situation of Women in Afghanistan – 2014 and Beyond”, organized by the Permanent Mission of Liechtenstein, in cooperation with the Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination (LISD), Princeton University, and the Peace Women Project of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom.
At 00:01 a.m. (GMT), the Inter-agency Group on Mortality Estimates will release the global numbers on child mortality. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for futher information.