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United Nations Daily Highlights, 05-07-26
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From: The United Nations Home Page at <http://www.un.org> - email: firstname.lastname@example.orgARCHIVES
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE SPOKESMAN'S NOON
BY STEPHANE DUJARRIC
SPOKESMAN FOR THE SECRETARY-GENERAL
UN HEADQUARTERS, NEW YORK
Tuesday, July 26, 2005
KOFI ANNAN WELCOMES RESUMPTION OF SIX-PARTY TALKS ON KOREA
Secretary-General Kofi Annan warmly
welcomes the resumption of the six-party talks in Beijing.
He has written to the foreign ministers of the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea, the United States and the four other participants in the talks, to commend them for breaking the impasse and for creating the current positive momentum.
The Secretary-General hopes that the resumed session will achieve substantive progress towards a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula that is stable, secure and prosperous. He maintains that a negotiated solution based on dialogue and goodwill is the right way to achieve these goals.
The Secretary-General will continue to work closely with the parties on this challenging set of issues.
IRAQ: SUNNI RETURN TO CONSTITUTION COMMITTEE SEEN AS ENCOURAGING
The Secretary-General is
encouraged by the agreement between the Government of
Iraq and the Sunni Conference enabling the return of their Conference representatives to Iraqs constitutional drafting committee.
The Secretary-General also commends the decision of the Transitional Government of Iraq to conduct an independent criminal investigation into the recent assassinations of two representatives of the Sunni Conference to the constitutional commission, Mijbil Sheikh al-Issa and Dhaman al-Jabouri. Those responsible should be apprehended and prosecuted.
The Secretary-General urges all Iraqi parties to continue working together to achieve consensus around a new permanent constitution within the established timeframe.
He assures them that his Special Representative in Iraq and the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) will continue, in accordance with Security Council Resolution 1546, to assist the Transitional Government, the Transitional National Assembly, and the Iraqi people in this important stage of the countrys political transition.
DUTCH AMBASSADOR NAMED AS NEW U.N. ENVOY IN WESTERN SAHARA
The Secretary-General, in a letter, has informed the Security Council President of his decision to appoint Ambassador Peter van Walsum of the Netherlands as his Personal Envoy for Western Sahara to help assess the situation and to explore with the parties, neighboring states and other stakeholders how best to overcome the present political impasse.
As a first step, the Secretary-General, says he has requested the ambassador to establish contacts with the parties and neighboring states to ascertain their views on the best way forward.
SECURITY COUNCIL ESTABLISHES FIRST MONITORING, REPORTING SYSTEM
TO PROTECT CHILDREN IN ARMED CONFLICT
The Security Council this morning unanimously adopted a resolution requesting the Secretary-General to implement a monitoring and reporting
mechanism concerning the recruitment of
child soldiers and other abuses committed against children during armed conflict.
The Council also adopted a resolution, transmitting to the General Assembly the names of 34 nominees to serve as ad litem, or short-term, judges on the
International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
The Security Council is currently holding consultations on Lebanon. Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Hédi Annabi is briefing the Council on the Secretary-Generals recent report, which recommends a six-month extension of the
UN Interim Force in that country. A draft resolution on Lebanon has also been introduced in the Council.
UNICEF CALLS FOR HUMANITARIAN ACCESS IN ZIMBABWE
The UN Childrens Fund (UNICEF) has
called for full humanitarian access to the people who have been made homeless in
UNICEF said it was horrified at reports of children dying of easily treatable respiratory infections and of women being forced to give birth in the open.
UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman said, More than 220,000 children are homeless, without access to food, water or health care. Tens of thousands of children are no longer in schools.
The agency said the crisis deepens a humanitarian nightmare that includes the worlds fourth-highest rate of HIV infection, fuel shortages, a growing food emergency, declining economic performance, and the sharpest rises in child mortality in the world.
The Office for the Coordination for Humanitarian Affairs reports that humanitarian assessments were completed over the weekend and that the results should be available in the coming days.
Asked whether the Secretary-General would visit Zimbabwe, the Spokesman said that the Secretary-General, during a phone call last week, accepted in principle an invitation from President Robert Mugabe to visit the country. But no date has been set, and a visit is not imminent, he added.
Before the Secretary-General would travel to Zimbabwe, Dujarric said, there needs to be meaningful progress on a range of issues. The evictions, he said, must cease, while humanitarian aid should reach those in need, and a political process must start between the Government and other stakeholders in Zimbabwe. The Secretary-General could go, if those issues are advanced in a significant way, and taking into account other developments.
The Spokesman added that, in any case, the Secretary-General would not want to substitute himself for Anna Tibaijuka, who has written a full and authoritative report.
ARMED CLASHES, AN AMBUSH AND BANDITRY REPORTED IN DARFUR
UN Mission in Sudan reports from Khartoum that the African Union is investigating a number of weekend incidents in Darfur, including reported armed clashes between the government and rebel forces, as well as a reported ambush on the military.
As for the security situation in general in Darfur, some acts of banditry, including by the rebel groups, were reported to have taken place, according to the Mission.
The Mission also says that armed banditry persists in the three states of Darfur, with the continuing killing of civilians, attacks, and looting of commercial trucks and non-governmental organizations and their passengers.
COTE DIVOIRE: U.N. PEACEKEEPERS ENTER TOWN IN WAKE OF ATTACK
UN Operation in Cote d'Ivoire reports that its Force Commander, General Abdoulaye Fall, accompanied by the Chief of Staff of the Ivorian Defence and Security Forces, General Philippe Mangou, today entered the town of Agboville.
UN peacekeepers had been trying to enter Agboville since it came under attack by unidentified assailants Saturday evening,
The UN mission had been responding to a request for troop deployment from the Ivorian authorities.
FORMER LIBERIAN PRESIDENT MUST BE PUT ON TRIAL,
U.N. HUMAN RIGHTS CHIEF SAYS
Louise Arbour spoke to the press in Geneva today, one year after she took office as High Commissioner for
Human Rights. She discussed her recent mission to West Africa.
She said that, after visiting the massacre sites of Gitrozon and Duékoué in Cote dIvoire, it was obvious that people living in the region were terrorized and not forthcoming. She called for full accountability for the events that took place there last month.
During her visit to West Africa, Arbour said, she called for former Liberian President Charles Taylor to be surrendered to the jurisdiction of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. The time has come for Taylor to stand trial, she added.
FOOD DELIVERED TO NIGER AND MALI, DESPITE FUNDING SHORTFALLS
The World Food Programme (WFP)
reports that, despite severe funding shortfalls, it has distributed food to some 273,000 people in Niger. In addition, it is planning this week to send nearly 80 tons of energy biscuits to the capital, Niamey.
Meanwhile, WFP's operation in Mali, which began last February, has aimed to provide assistance to 450,000 people considered to be the most vulnerable. But because of a lack of donations, the agency has only been able to help some 86,000 people.
CHILDREN TO HOLD WORLD ENVIRONMENT SUMMIT
The UN Environment Programme
reports that around 600 children, between the ages of 10 and 14 and from 65 countries, are gathering this week in Japan for the first ever Children's World Summit for the Environment.
They will share their experiences and voice their concerns on the importance of the environment in achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Each day will have a different theme: Energy, Biodiversity, Water, and Recycling.
The Summit will be presided over by Prince Akishino, who will be accompanied by his wife Princess Kiko. Their two daughters Princess Mako and Princess Kako, who are respectively 14 and 11 years old, will also participate in the Summit as delegates.
LONG-TERM SOLUTIONS ESSENTIAL IN FIGHT AGAINST AIDS: Peter Piot, the Executive Director of the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), today
told an international AIDS conference in Rio de Janeiro that we must establish systems critical to achieving longer-term solutions against AIDS, including vaccines and microbicides. Real success against the epidemic can only be achieved if long-term planning is fully integrated into the response to AIDS, he said.
SOUTH ASIA DEVELOPMENT REPORT TO BE LAUNCHED TOMORROW: The UN Development Programmes South Asian Human Development Report for 2004 will be launched tomorrow. The report examines health in South Asia and its link to poverty reduction and economic growth. Speakers at the launch will include Rima Salah, Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF, and Khadija Haq of the Mahbub ul Haq Human Development Centre.
RESOLUTION ON SECURITY COUNCIL REFORM TO BE INTRODUCED TODAY: The draft resolution on Security Council reform put forward by the group known as Uniting for Consensus is to be officially introduced at a General Assembly plenary meeting this afternoon at 3:00.
TIMING OF ANNAN INTERVIEW UP TO VOLCKER: Asked when the Secretary-General would be interviewed by Paul Volckers
Independent Inquiry Committee, the Spokesman said that was a matter for Volcker to decide.
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