Secretary-General is deeply concerned about the current violence in Beirut, Lebanon.
The UN calls on all concerned to immediately cease acts of violence and to refrain from any provocative actions or inflammatory rhetoric. 
The Secretary-General reiterates the need for an impartial, thorough and transparent investigation into the explosion at the port of Beirut that took place last year.
The Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Joanna Wronecka, also responded to the violence today. She condemned the use of armed violence outside of state authority and underscored the need for restraint, for maintaining calm and stability and ensuring the protection of civilians.
The Special Coordinator underscored the utmost responsibility of Lebanon’s leaders to place the interests of the country first and foremost at this critical juncture. She said, and I quote: “Now is the time for all sides to support judicial independence in the interest of the people.”

This morning, the Secretary-General delivered remarks virtually to the Second UN Global Sustainable Transport Conference that is taking place in Beijing. 
He said the door is closing for action on climate, nature and pollution, noting that transport, which accounts for more than one quarter of global greenhouse gases, is key to getting this on track.   
The Secretary-General stressed that we must decarbonize all means of transport, in order to get to net-zero emissions by 2050 globally.  
We know how to make this happen, he said, pointing to the need to adopt more ambitious and credible targets to decarbonize the entire transport sector.  
He noted that the current commitments made by Member States to address emissions from shipping and aviation are not aligned with the 1.5-degree goal of the Paris Agreement, but rather are more consistent with warming way above 3 degrees Celsius. 
The Secretary-General said that this Transport Conference is an important opportunity to galvanize action by all, to build the sustainable transport systems we need for a green, inclusive and equitable future.

The Secretary-General today spoke via a pre-recorded video message to the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund event on “Making Climate Action Count.” 
He stressed in his remarks that, as COP26 approaches, it is essential for all humanity that we fulfil the promise of the Paris Agreement. But, Mr. Guterres says, we are not there yet. 
The Secretary-General says he is especially concerned over the lack of progress on public climate finance.  
He underscored that $100 billion dollars a year from public and private sources for mitigation and adaptation for the developing world is the bare minimum, and that much more will be needed. 
Mr. Guterres pointed to the essential role of development banks in spearheading the transition of energy systems from fossil fuels to renewables, while also ensuring universal access to energy. 
These banks, he said, must lead the way in supporting credible and just transition plans and in funding 
green, resilient, and inclusive recoveries, without worsening the sovereign debt crises that cripple low- and middle-income countries. 
The Secretary-General also stressed the need for donor countries and multilateral development banks to allocate at least 50 per cent of their climate finance to adaptation and resilience.

This morning, the Secretary-General spoke in person at the General Assembly’s tribute to Abdelaziz Bouteflika, the former President of the General Assembly, and also, of course, former President of Algeria.   
The Secretary-General reiterated his condolences to the Government of Algeria, and recalled that, as President of the 29th session of the General Assembly, in 1974-75, Mr. Bouteflika was particularly active in the area of decolonization and is remembered for giving a voice to the liberation movements in Africa, Asia and South America.

Today, the World Food Programme (WFP) said that in Herat and around the Afghanistan, WFP is working day and night to scale up assistance to reach people in need. 
In September alone, WFP reached 4 million people with food and nutrition assistance across all 34 provinces, 3 times the number that they reached in August. 
The Executive Director of the World Food Programme, David Beasley, noted that a record number of Afghans are hungry, and 1 million children risk dying from malnutrition without urgent intervention. He stressed that if the international aid does not flow as soon as possible, it will be catastrophic, and this is a war on hunger.
For its part, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) continues to conduct assessments for displaced persons and families across the country. 
Ahead of the winter, IOM’s humanitarian assistance programme is scaling up efforts to support thousands of families and host community members. 
The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said that it is currently working in at least 31 out of the 34 Afghanistan's provinces. FAO pointed out that [it is] reaching out to the most vulnerable people in rural and remote areas, thanks to the committed support of its resource partners.

The Secretary-General has appointed Daniel Endres of Switzerland as Assistant Secretary-General to serve as Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for East Africa.
Mr. Endres has served in a range of senior roles at the Headquarters at the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), including as Director of the Division of International Protection. He brings with him over 32 years of experience in the humanitarian field.  
Mr. Endres has also served in leadership roles in complex field operations, including as UNHCR Representative in Iraq and as Deputy UNHCR Representative in Afghanistan.

Hans Grundberg, the Special Envoy for Yemen, briefed the Security Council this morning on his numerous consultations with Yemeni, regional and international actors. In all these discussions, he said, he has focused on the question of how to move toward a sustainable political solution to end the conflict. He added that the Yemenis he spoke to have without exception stressed the necessity to end the war. 
Ramesh Rajasingham, the Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, also briefed and warned Council members that aid work is getting harder in Yemen, mostly because aid organizations are starting to run out of money. 
 On the UN humanitarian operations there, Mr. Rajasingham also said that aid agencies are now helping nearly 13 million people across the Yemen. That’s about three million more people than just a few months before and is a direct result of more donor funds coming in over the past few months. But without more money, up to four million people could see their food aid reduced.

This afternoon, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Colombia, Carlos Ruiz Massieu, will brief the Security Council on Colombia.    
Mr. Massieu is expected to reiterate the Secretary-General’s call in his report to use the adoption of Colombia’s Final Peace Agreement 5th Anniversary - which will be marked in November - as an opportunity to take stock of what has been achieved in the peace process. And he is also expected to emphasize what remains to be done, and to recommit collectively to the full implementation of this historic agreement.

In the Central African Republic, the seasonal livestock migration is about to begin. In this context, the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) continue to support protection efforts, as well as the reduction of tensions, in cooperation with national authorities and local communities.  
Yesterday, in Bouar, the Mission organized a session on the management of conflicts related to the seasonal movement of livestock. A number of participants, including seven women, attended the session. They represented local authorities, Internal Security Forces, civil society and others.  
In addition, the Mission said that yesterday in Bria, a 31 armed combatants were disarmed and demobilized. This was accomplished through the framework of the national Disarmament, Demobilization, Reintegration and Repatriation (DDRR) programme. The weapons collected were transported and stored on the premises of the UN Mission

On COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO) said today that only 14.2 per cent – or one in seven – COVID-19 infections are being detected in Africa. 
The WHO analysis found that, as of October 10th, the cumulative number of COVID-19 infections is estimated to be 59 million in Africa, which is seven times more than the over 8 million cases reported. 
To date, COVID-19 detection in Africa has focused on people reporting to health facilities with symptoms, in addition to testing arriving and departing international travellers. This has led to large-scale under-reporting due to the high percentage of asymptomatic cases on the continent. 
To address this, WHO today also announced a new initiative to increase community screening for COVID-19 in eight countries. The programme aims to reach more than 7 million people with rapid diagnostic tests in the next year.

The UN team in Mongolia, led by Resident Coordinator Tapan Mishra, continues to support authorities respond to the pandemic - addressing health, humanitarian, and socioeconomic needs of Mongolians. 
Of the 5.4 million vaccine doses that have arrived in the country, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) helped to procure half of those through COVAX and other sources. 
As of this week, more than 65 per cent of the population has been fully vaccinated. 
UNICEF helped to expand cold chain capacity and to build a new central vaccine storage facility, and the UN team has provided personal protective equipment, including oxygen supplies, as well as training for healthcare workers and journalists.

Guyana received more than 100,000 doses of vaccines donated by the United States through COVAX. Guyanan authorities will use these doses to vaccinate women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. This latest delivery brings to total number of doses Guyana has received through COVAX to 220,000.  
Jamaica received 108,000 doses donated by Germany through COVAX, bringing the total number of doses from COVAX so far to more than 430,000. However, just to note, Jamaica is one of the six countries in the region that has yet to reach the target of fully vaccinating 20 per cent of its population.  
And Argentina also received a new shipment of more than 960,000 doses of vaccines donated by Spain through COVAX, bringing the total number of COVAX-backed doses received in Argentina to nearly 4.3 million.  
All of this is done with support from the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO).

The World Food Programme (WFP) today released an analysis showing that a 2°C rise in average global temperature from pre-industrial levels will see a staggering 189 million additional people in the grips of hunger. WFP noted that vulnerable communities, a vast majority of whom rely on agriculture, fishing, and livestock, and who contribute the least to the climate crisis, will continue to bear the brunt of the impacts with limited means to cushion the blow. 
The analysis, launched ahead of World Food Day, points out that in in southern Madagascar, for example, consecutive droughts have pushed nearly 1.1 million people into severe hunger. Nearly 14,000 of them are in famine-like conditions and this number is expected to double by the end of the year. 
WFP added that when coupled with conflict, the climate crisis worsens existing vulnerabilities, magnifying the damage, destruction and despair.  
The analysis notes that in Afghanistan, severe drought tied to conflict and economic hardship has left a third of the population reeling with hunger.

Yesterday, in a tweet, the Secretary-General said that he was shocked and saddened by the tragic news we saw in Norway. 
He said that his thoughts are with the victims’ loved ones and all the people at this very difficult moment, and of course, we condemn this horrific attack.

In response to a question, I can tell you that we have received a request from the National Electoral Council for the deployment of a Panel of Electoral Experts, but not for the deployment of an electoral observation mission. The request has been evaluated and we expected a response soon.

Also, in response to a question, I can tell you that we are in communication with the Government of Belarus on the issue that they raised in the bilateral meeting with the Secretary-General through appropriate channels.
The UN Country Team, including all UN agencies, funds and programmes working in Belarus, is focused on continuing its work with and for Belarus. The Country Team looks forward to further collaboration with Belarusian authorities and relevant civil society partners, including in the area of sustainable development and human rights.

Tomorrow, the noon briefing guest will be Omar Abdi, the Deputy Executive Director of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF). He will brief on the situation in Afghanistan.