HIGHLIGHTS OF PRESS BRIEFING BY BRENDEN VARMA, SPOKESPERSON FOR GENERAL ASSEMBLY PRESIDENT MIROSLAV LAJČÁK
CLIMATE CHANGE & GENDER DISCUSSED IN MEETING WITH MARSHALL ISLANDS PRESIDENT
- The President met this morning with President Hilda Heine of the Marshall Islands.
- They discussed gender equality, water, climate change and the grant that the Marshall Islands recently received from the Green Climate Fund. They also spoke of the challenges faced by small States in accessing climate financing and participating at the United Nations.
PRESIDENT HOSTS TWITTER CHAT ON INCLUSION OF WOMEN
- This morning the President held his fourth Twitter chat — as part of his outreach to young people.
- The topic this time was women and inclusion.
WOMEN’S ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT BENEFITS US ALL
- This afternoon, the President will address the Group of 77’s High-Level Interactive Dialogue on “Innovative Practices for the Financial Inclusion and Economic Empowerment of Women, Especially Rural Women”.
- He is expected to say that economic empowerment of women is not, just, about women.
- If we see it that way, we will miss out on the bigger picture – because women’s economic empowerment is good for us all.
- He also plans to call for laws, policies and partnerships to support and empower women.
PRESIDENT EXPRESSES SUPPORT FOR UNRWA’S VALUABLE WORK
- The Spokesperson was asked why the President was not attending an upcoming conference in support of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), which was being held in Rome and organized by Egypt, Italy and Jordan.
- The Spokesperson responded that the President had repeatedly spoken out about the importance of UNRWA and the need for UNRWA to have the necessary funding to carry out its valuable work. Regarding this particular conference, the President had not been invited to attend.
PRESIDENT’S TRIP TO COLOMBIA TO FOCUS ON PEACEBUILDING
- Asked why the President was traveling to Colombia on 15 March, the Spokesperson said that peacebuilding and sustaining peace were big priorities for the President. In that regard, the President would be looking to hear Colombian perspectives on that theme. Those perspectives would be especially relevant given Colombia’s experience with its peace process. They would also be valuable ahead of the President’s high-level meeting on peacebuilding and sustaining peace, which he would be convening in April in New York.
- In Bogotá, the President was expected to meet with Colombian officials, including the President of the Republic, H.E. Mr. Juan Manuel Santos Calderón, and the Minister for Foreign Affairs, H.E. Ms. María Ángela Holguín Cuéllar, as well as representatives of the United Nations Country Team and United Nations Verification Mission in Colombia. President Lajčák would also participate alongside President Santos in the launch of Colombia’s national strategy for implementing the Sustainable Development Goals.
- The Spokesperson noted that the schedule was continuing to evolve. But as of now, the President was scheduled to visit a United Nations interagency project in western Colombia, which was working to support peace through strengthening food security and agricultural productive capacities of indigenous communities.