The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Olof Skoog (Sweden):
The United Nations migration agency said today that it assisted more than 72,000 migrants to return home voluntarily in 2017. This represents a 27 per cent decrease compared to 2016, when some 98,000 migrants were provided with return and reintegration support.
The United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti reports that the situation there remains tense and volatile following the suspension of a fuel price hike by Prime Minister Lafontant on Saturday. The Mission is helping to remove roadblocks to ensure access to key roads.
Thousands of Rohingya people continue fleeing Myanmar’s Rakhine State and describe continued violence and human rights abuses, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, told the Human Rights Council yesterday, warning that the international community will not forget the outrages committed.
The Human Rights Office says it is deeply concerned at reports that the Palestinian Bedouin community of Khan al Ahmar-Abu al Helu is to be demolished by the Israeli authorities in the coming days. The community is home to 181 people, more than half of them children.
Today is the International Day of the Tropics. As you know, the Tropics are the area between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn, and host approximately 80 per cent of the world’s biodiversity and much of its language and cultural diversity.
The Security Council today decided to extend for one year the mandate of the United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH), while also laying out a staggered decrease in its uniformed personnel and requesting periodic progress assessments on the Secretary-General’s proposed drawdown and exit strategy.
The temporary base in Tagbara, north-east of Bambari, of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic was attacked by anti-balaka fighters today. One peacekeeper was killed and 11 others were injured after several hours of exchange of fire. The Mission condemned the attack and deployed reinforcements to Tagbara.
With the United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH) fully operational, preparations have already begun for that follow-up peacekeeping operation to make way for a new United Nations presence by the end of 2019 that would focus on the Caribbean nation’s long-term sustainable development, the Organization’s top peacekeeping official told the Security Council today.
Since 11 March, the United Nations estimates that more than 50,000 people have left eastern Ghouta, Syria. Amid visits from United Nations teams in recent days, most of the existing shelters do not have the capacity or infrastructure to accommodate the large number of people arriving in rural areas near Damascus.
Ending a two-day mission to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock and Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Sigrid Kaag called on the international community to urgently tackle the crisis in the country, where over 13 million people need humanitarian aid.
The United Nations Children’s Fund expressed deep sadness over the killing of its colleague, along with five other education workers, on 25 February in the north-western region of the Central African Republic, near Markounda, a remote area close to the Chadian border.
The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) launched its revised Multi-Year Humanitarian Response Plan 2017-2018 for Haiti, requiring $252 million to provide assistance to 2.2 million of an estimated 2.8 million people in need. The launch coincides with the eighth anniversary of the 12 January 2010 earthquake in Haiti.
A joint study on food security released by the Government of South Sudan and humanitarian partners such as the Food and Agriculture Organization, the United Nations Children’s Fund and the World Food Programme, warns that the current harvest season will not end the hunger crisis in the country.
Some 4,000 Rohingya refugees have fled Myanmar and crossed the border into Bangladesh in the last 48 hours. The newly arrived refugees say thousands more people are waiting on Myanmar’s coast to make the crossing. United Nations agencies and their partners are providing food and other supplies.
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) welcomed Myanmar’s commitment to implement recommendations of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State, as the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reported slower rates of refugees entering Bangladesh.
The Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Nickolay Mladenov, welcomed the full return of the Gaza crossings to the control of the Palestinian Authority. He said the return was a landmark development in the implementation of the intra-Palestinian agreement, signed in Cairo on 12 October.
United Nations Secretary‑General António Guterres announced today the appointment of Susan D. Page of the United States as his Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH).
Irina Bokova, Executive Director of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, condemned today the killing of investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia in Malta yesterday. She welcomed the Prime Minister’s pledge to ensure justice in the crime against the right of free expression.
As the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) completed its mandate on 15 October, the Security Council welcomed the notable progress made by Haiti towards stability and democracy.
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