PRESS STATEMENT: President of UNGA visits Rome



President of UNGA visits Rome

The UN GA President met with the President of the Senate of ItalyIn a mission to push for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, the President of the UN General Assembly, H.E. Mr Peter Thomson, visited the Rome-based UN Agencies on Wednesday 23 November.

The President met bilaterally with H.E. Mr Graziano da Silva, Director General of the FAO and H.E. Ms Ertharin Cousin, Executive Director of the WFP to discuss measures to strengthen the role of the UN system in assisting Member States achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). They also discussed FAO’s preparations for the Oceans Conference to be held at the UN, New York, 5-9 June 2017.

The President attended an informal gathering at FAO headquarters and addressed Member States and the leadership of FAO, WFP and IFAD on the importance of promoting greater awareness of the SDGs and of educating the world’s youth on them, including through the inclusion of the SDGs in school curriculums worldwide. President Thomson reiterated his call for universal adherence to the provisions of the SDGs and the Paris Climate Agreement in order to turn humanity away from its current approach to unsustainability.

The President called for a strong collaboration and coherence across the UN system in the implementation of the Goals, saying it was “vital we break out of our silos to ensure effective and efficient delivery of the UN”.

While in Rome, the President also met with the President of Italy’s Senate, H.E. Mr. Pietro Grasso, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Mr. Paolo Gentiloni, and the Minister for the Environment, Land and Sea, H.E. Mr. Gian Luca Galletti. The President thanked Italy for its many contributions to the United Nations and for its strong engagement in the implementation of the SDGs.

On 23 November the President was invited to address youth groups and Italian officials at an event on SDG education organized by the Ministry of Environment.

On 24 November he visited the International Development Law Organization (IDLO) in Rome to speak at an interactive meeting with IDLO staff, including video-conferencing with IDLO workers in Afghanistan, Kenya and the Netherlands. Discussions covered support for SDG16, strengthening rule of law, access to justice and building effective, accountable and inclusive institutions.

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