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United Nations Daily Highlights, 07-05-18

United Nations Daily Highlights Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The United Nations Home Page at <http://www.un.org> - email: unnews@un.org

ARCHIVES

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE NOON BRIEFING

BY MICHELE

MONTAS

SPOKESPERSON FOR SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON

U.N.

HEADQUARTERS, NEW YORK

Friday, May 18, 2007

BAN KI-MOON STRESSES IMPORTANCE OF

IRAQS CONSTITUTIONAL REVIEW PROCESS

As Iraqs Constitutional Review Committee prepares to submit the results of its deliberations to the full parliament, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reiterates the importance of the constitutional review process and of finalizing the outstanding issues that are vital to the process of national reconciliation in

Iraq.

The Committee has undertaken its work responsibly in an atmosphere of mutual respect, and should be applauded.

Striking a compromise on the core constitutional issues at the heart of Iraqs system of governance is essential for establishing stability in the country.

The Secretary-General hopes that Iraqi leaders will embrace this opportunity by rising above narrow sectarian interests, remaining open to compromise, and fostering consensus.

The United Nations remains fully committed to a national dialogue towards a Constitution than can be supported by all Iraqis.

DARFUR: U.N. HUMAN RIGHTS OFFICE CALLS FOR IMMEDIATE PROBE

OF SUDAN SECURITY FORCES

The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

called today for an immediate and independent investigation into the involvement of Sudanese security forces in attacks on villages near Nyala, South Darfur, that have left over 100 people dead and thousands displaced since January of this year.

The Human Rights Office is seriously concerned that to date no effective action has been taken by the Government of Sudan to prevent the attacks or bring the perpetrators to justice.

The report documents violence in an area known as Bulbul resulting from a dispute over land between two groups.

The report, issued in cooperation with the United Nations Mission in Sudan, details the involvement of Border Intelligence Guards in attacks starting on 6 January. The latest large-scale attack was reported on 31 March. Members of both groups describe themselves as Arab.

SECURITY COUNCIL MEETS ON COTE DVOIRE

The situation in Cote dIvoire is on the agenda of the Security Council today. In an open meeting just a few hours ago, Council members heard a message from the President of Burkina Faso, who was the facilitator of the inter-Ivorian peace talks. And that message was delivered by the Minister of National Security of Burkina Faso.

Council members then moved into closed-door consultations to hear a briefing by Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Heidi Annabi, who is presenting the latest progress report of the Secretary-General on Cote dIvoire. After that, Council members will take up other matters.

BAN KI-MOON WILL CLOSELY FOLLOW THE WORK OF RIGHTS COUNCIL

Asked if the Secretary-General had any comments about the election yesterday of new members of the Human Rights Council, the Spokeswoman said that new seat-holders at the Human Rights Council are elected by Member States and the Council members' performance was for the Council itself to appraise.

Montas further said that the Secretary-General would not comment on the election of new members but, should the situation warrant it, he might pronounce himself on the work of the Council as a whole.

U.N. MISSION IN HAITI CONDEMNS KILLING OF JOURNALIST

The UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti has strongly condemned the assassination yesterday of Haitian journalist Alix Joseph, the director of programming for Radio Provinciale which is based in Gonaives. Joseph was reportedly shot in the head by armed men, all of whom remain at large.

The Mission extends its condolences to Haitis press corps and pledges to provide all the necessary assistance to the Haitian police in finding Josephs killers.

The incident comes less than a week after the Mission conducted a training seminar for both state-employed and independent journalists at Cap-Haitien, which focused on media ethics and news reporting techniques, among other subjects.

The Mission also held a series of discussions and seminars for some 150 of the recently-elected municipal leaders on the subject of good governance and the management of relationships with civil society and grass-root organizations.

WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME TO REACH THOSE IN NEED IN

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC AND SOMALIA

The World Food Programme (WFP) announced today that it is airlifting equipment from its humanitarian response depot in Ghana to the Central African Republic (CAR). That equipment includes temporary storage facilities, living accommodations and accompanying tool kits.

This is to help with WFPs plan to urgently scale up its logistics capacity in the CAR, in order to reach some 230,000 people affected by the current crisis there.

Meanwhile, in Somalia, WFP said a second round of food distributions started today to more than 120,000 people affected by the recent violence in Mogadishu. But it warned that a new spate of piracy threatens to strangle its main supply routes to Somalia.

GLOBAL BUSINESS LEADERS ATTEND FORUM

ON DIVERSIFYING ASIAN ECONOMIES

Some 300 business leaders and policymakers are taking part in a UN-sponsored forum in Almaty, Kazakhstan, to discuss how to diversify Asian economies and increase their international competitiveness.

The event is organized by Bangkok-based UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) in cooperation with the government of Kazakhstan, among others. It is timed to coincide with the 63rd UNESCAP Commission Session now ongoing in Almaty in order to deliver the forums recommendations to Asian trade ministers attending the Commissions session.

OTHER ANNOUNCEMENTS

U.N. SECRETARIAT HAS FORWARDED LEBANESE PRESIDENTS LETTER TO SECURITY COUNCIL: Asked why a letter from Lebanese President Emile Lahoud to the UN had still not been circulated, the Spokeswoman said later that the letter was forwarded to the Security Council on May 16th, the day it was received by the Secretariat.

  • *The guest at the briefing today was Jan Eliasson, the Secretary-Generals Special Envoy for Darfur, who gave an update on recent AU-UN efforts to revitalize the Darfur peace process.

    THE WEEK AHEAD AT THE UNITED NATIONS

    19 May - 25 May 2007

    [This document is for planning purposes only and is subject to change.]

    Saturday, May 19

    High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour continues her two-week visit to the Great Lakes region of Africa. Until 23 May, she will be in Burundi, before traveling to Rwanda until 25 May.

    Monday, May 21

    This morning, the Secretary-General is scheduled to address the General Assemblys session to review the implementation of the Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS.

    This morning, Under-Secretary-General and Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes is scheduled to brief the Security Council on the humanitarian situation in the Great Lakes Region and the Horn of Africa. In the afternoon, the Council is expected to hold consultations and a private debate on Burundi.

    From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Conference Room 6, there will be an open, informal meeting of the Sierra Leone Configuration of the Peacebuilding Commission.

    The guest at the noon briefing will be Dr. Djibril Diallo, Director of the New York Office of Sport for Development and Peace, who will discuss the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics and Paralympics, the UN Global Youth Leadership Summit, and Sport for Peace programmes in Liberia and Democratic Republic of the Congo.

    The 6th Session of the Permanent Forum of Indigenous Issues, focusing on "Territories, Land, and Natural Resources", continues through Thursday in Conference Room 2.

    From 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Secretariats South Lobby, there will be an opening reception for an exhibit on Argentina: Tango, Tourism and Rural Villages

    In Geneva, the Committee on the Rights of the Child begins its two-week session. The weeklong tenth session of the Commission on Science and Technology for Development also gets underway.

    In Rome, the Regional Forum for Western Europe will discuss "Transformational Government: Creating the Public Administration of the Future", in preparation for Junes 7th Global Forum on Reinventing Government.

    From today through Thursday in Bilthoven, The Netherlands, the Food and Agriculture Organization and World Health Organization are holding an expert meeting on viruses in food.

    The Independent Expert on the human rights situation in Haiti, Louis Joinet, begins a 10-day mission to Haiti.

    Today is World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development.

    Tuesday, May 22

    This morning, the Security Council is scheduled to hold an open debate on its Counter-Terrorism, 1267 and 1540 Committees.

    This morning, the General Assembly is scheduled to elect two members of the Organizational Committee of the Peacebuilding Commission and 30 members of the UN Commission on International Trade Law.

    Today is the International Day for Biological Diversity. This years theme is "Biodiversity and Climate Change".

    At 11 a.m. at Room 226, there will be a press conference by Charles McNeill, UNDPs Environment Team Manager of the Environment and Energy Group, and John Scott, Secretariat of the Convention on Biodiversity, who will discuss the importance of biodiversity in diminishing poverty and responding to climate change, as well as present the Equator Prize.

    At 1.15 p.m. at Room 226, there will be a press conference by John Scott, Secretariat of the Convention on Biodiversity, and Vladimir Bocharnikov from the Russian Association of Indigenous Peoples of the North, who will brief on indigenous peoples vulnerability to climate change.

    At 2 p.m., at Room 226, there will be a press conference by H.E. Mr. Nejosa Radmanovic, Chairman, and H.E. Mr. Zeljko Komsic and H.E. Mr. Haris Silajdzic, members of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, on the occasion of the 15th Anniversary of the membership of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the UN.

    UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Antonio Guterres, is scheduled to begin a four-day mission to Nepal and Bhutan.

    Wednesday, May 23

    This morning, the Security Council is scheduled to hold a private debate on Afghanistan, as well as adopt a resolution the UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) Escrow Account.

    The guest at the noon briefing will be Dan Toole, UNICEFs Director of Emergency Programmes, who will brief on the situation of children in Iraq.

    Today and tomorrow, the advisory group of the Central Emergency Response Fund holds its semi-annual meeting.

    From today through Friday, the inaugural conference for the Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea takes place in Baku, Azerbaijan.

    Thursday, May 24

    This morning, the Security Council is scheduled to hold a briefing and consultations on the Middle East.

    At 11 a.m. at Room 226, Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, will brief on the latest developments in climate change.

    The General Assembly is scheduled to elect the president of its 62nd Session. The newly-elected president will hold a press conference at 12:30 p.m. in Room 226.

    From 9 to 10 a.m. in Conference Room 2, there will be a briefing with Member States on the sixth session of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.

    Friday, May 25

    Today marks the beginning of the Week of Solidarity with the Peoples of Non-Self-Governing Territories.

    Office of the Spokesman for the Secretary-General

    United Nations, S-378

    New York, NY 10017

    Tel. 212-963-7162

    Fax. 212-963-7055


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