HIGHLIGHTS OF THE NOON BRIEFING BY FARHAN HAQ,
DEPUTY SPOKESMAN FOR SECRETARY-GENERAL ANTÓNIO GUTERRES
FRIDAY, 13 DECEMBER 2019
In Madrid this morning, the Secretary-General appealed to countries to send a message of ambition to the world, align their climate objectives to science, and commit to stronger climate action. In a tweet, he added that a spirit of compromise is necessary for a successful conclusion to regulations related to the implementation of the Paris Agreement.
He also congratulated the European Union for its announcement committing to reach carbon neutrality by 2050 and said this example of climate action needs to be followed worldwide.
The Secretary-General is currently still meeting with various parties at the Conference, which is expected to conclude this evening.
The United Nations welcomes the agreement announced today by the political parties in the Plurinational Legislative Assembly on legislation aimed at guaranteeing the full exercise of constitutional rights. The implementation of this law should pave the way for further normalization of the situation in the country and the holding of transparent, inclusive and credible elections.
The Secretary-General calls upon all political and social actors to remain committed to seek a peaceful solution to the crisis that has affected the country through constructive dialogue.
In a report on Chile published today, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, says that during the recent mass protests and state of emergency the police failed to adhere to international human rights norms and standards relating to management of assemblies and the use of force.
The report was produced by a UN Human rights team which spent the first three weeks researching the situation across seven regions of Chile.
It details extensive allegations – including specific examples -- of torture, ill-treatment, rape and other forms of sexual violence by the police against people held in detention, many of whom appear to have been detained arbitrarily.
The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights today said that it is concerned that India's new Citizenship Amendment Act 2019 is fundamentally discriminatory in nature.
The Human Rights Office said that the amended law would appear to undermine India's obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, to which India is a State party, which prohibit discrimination based on racial, ethnic or religious grounds.
The Human Rights Office said that it understands the new law will be reviewed by the Supreme Court of India and it expressed the hope that the Supreme Court will consider carefully the compatibility of the law with India's international human rights obligations.
Yesterday, with support from the International Organisation for Migration, 183 refugees originating from Sudan and the Central African Republic left Chad and flew to France, where they will be resettled.
The refugees had been living in camps in Chad’s Eastern and Southern regions as well as in the capital N’Djamena. The country hosts nearly 438,000 refugees, who mainly originate from the Central African Republic, Nigeria and Sudan, and live in camps in the Eastern and Southern parts of the country.
The charter marks the last operation in a two-year programme which has resettled over 1,700 refugees from Chad to France.
And in other news linked to Migration, IOM released its most recent numbers of Mediterranean migrant arrivals.
As of 11 December, nearly 105,000 migrants and refugees have entered Europe by sea. This represents roughly a 6 per cent decrease from the nearly 111,000 people who arrived during the same period last year.
Most of the migrants – about 80 per cent of them, have landed in Greece and Spain, while Italy, Malta and Cyprus received the rest of the migrants. Arrivals to Greece are running approximately 93 per cent ahead of 2018’s totals from this time. Arrivals to Spain are more than 55 per cent lower.
Deaths recorded on the three main Mediterranean Sea routes through the 11th of December stand at 1,246 individuals – or about 56 per cent of the 2,219 deaths confirmed during the same period in 2018.
UN Refugee Agency
On South Sudan, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, is calling on all parties to boost efforts to form an inclusive national unity government in order to achieve permanent peace.
Despite the signing of the peace agreement last year, the situation remains critical, with millions of South Sudanese displaced and in need of safety and humanitarian assistance.
South Sudan is Africa’s largest humanitarian and refugee crisis with over two million of its people seeking safety in neighboring countries.
On Afghanistan, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) is also appealing for intensified support for displaced Afghans and their host communities, ahead of the first-ever Global Refugee Forum in Geneva, next week.
As we enter the fifth decade of Afghan displacement, some 4.6 million Afghans remain uprooted globally – including some 2.7 million registered as refugees, and another two million displaced inside Afghanistan.
And the UN Chamber Music Society of the United Nations Staff Recreation Council (UNCMS), in association with Edge of Arabia, will hold a concert in celebration of World Arabic Language Day, next Wednesday – the 18th of December.
Founded in 2016, the Chamber Music Society is dedicated to promoting the UN goals at large - through the universal language of music. Its performance will be at 8:00 pm next Wednesday at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, and you’re all welcome to attend.