Noon Briefings

28 September 2020

A planetary emergency is upon us, driven by the dual threats of the climate crisis and biodiversity collapse, the Secretary-General said in a video message today, to leaders who took part in the virtual Pledge for Nature.  He added that we have failed to meet any of the biodiversity targets set in Japan 10 years ago.

25 September 2020

Devastating flooding along the White Nile River has affected some 625,000 people in South Sudan since July, United Nations humanitarian officials in that country report.  The United Nations and partners are providing food, temporary shelter, fishing kits, water purification tablets, medicine and other supplies.

24 September 2020

We are devastated by the sudden passing of our long-time friend and colleague Reynaldo Naval of the Media Documents Centre.  Rey proudly served the United Nations for 39 years, and we always appreciated his kindness, sunny disposition, dedication and pride in belonging to the Organization.

21 September 2020

The World Meteorological Organization launched today FOCUS-Africa, an $8.2 million initiative funded by the European Commission to increase resilience and adaptation in Southern Africa over the next four years.  It will deliver tailored services in agriculture and food security, water, energy and infrastructure.

18 September 2020

The Human Rights Council held an urgent debate on conditions in Belarus, with the High Commissioner for Human Rights, in a statement, noting the continuation of mass demonstrations and expressing alarm over hundreds of claims of torture and ill treatment while in police custody.  She urged authorities to facilitate independent, prompt and impartial investigations.

17 September 2020

The Secretary-General expressed concern over the number of restrictions and attacks against journalists, as many face harassment, intimidation, killing and arbitrary detention.  He called on Governments to immediately release journalists detained while exercising their profession, stressing:  “No democracy can function without press freedom.”

15 September 2020

A record 13.4 million people in Burkina Faso, Mali and western Niger need humanitarian assistance and protection, as fast-growing crises spread across the Central Sahel region.  The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reports that the number of internally displaced people has grown 20-fold to 1.4 million in less than two years.

14 September 2020

In Sudan, nearly 720,000 people have been affected by floods, with more than 100 deaths reported, according to the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.  While the United Nations and its partners have reached 200,000 with health, food and other assistance, the $1.6 billion Humanitarian Response Plan is less than half funded.

11 September 2020

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) are helping the Government of Cambodia with distance learning programmes for the more than 3 million students who are out of school due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

10 September 2020

A survey by the United Nations Children’s Fund found that 535,500 children in Burkina Faso under five years old are acutely malnourished, including 156,000 who suffer from severe acute malnutrition and are at imminent risk of death.  Community health workers have been mobilized to screen and treat children in the most remote areas.