News in Brief 29 August 2017 (PM)

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Deputy-Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed and Maman S. Sidikou, Head of MONUSCO, at the UN Mission. Photo: MONUSCO/John Bompengo

Prevention "the priority" for sustaining peace: deputy UN chief

Measures which prevent conflict should be the priority for all Member States and the UN as they try to build a more peaceful world.

That was the message delivered to the Security Council Open Debate on Peacekeeping Operations on Tuesday, by Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed.

She said each UN peacekeeping mission had its own unique political and development needs, and a multi-dimensional approach was needed including prioritizing protection of civilians, the rule of law and human rights.

"Sustaining peace is an inherently inclusive political process that spans development activities, preventive measures, mediation, conflict management and conflict resolution. Implementing the Sustaining Peace Agenda means putting Member States and their populations in the lead, prioritizing political solutions, putting prevention as the priority, and leveraging the UN's three pillars—human rights, peace and security, and development—in a mutually reinforcing way."

Ms Mohammed said that the challenge now was to ensure that the road map to a safer world was successful, and "its gains, irreversible".

US$45 million released from Emergency Fund for neglected emergencies

A total of US$45 million was released on Tuesday by the UN aid chief from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) to tackle neglected emergencies across four countries.

Relief chief Stephen O'Brien said that more than 21 million people living in Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, Chad and Sudan, needed urgent humanitarian assistance.

He said the allocation would help sustain and scale-up critical operations by humanitarian partners where life-saving needs are alarmingly high but funding is critically low.

A large portion of the funds will go to people affected by displacement and enable partners to provide critical healthcare; food assistance; and access to clean water and sanitation, said the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

UN Mission condemns "violation" of office complex in DRC by soldiers

The UN Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, MONUSCO, had condemned what it's calling the violation of one of its offices in the Kasai region, by Congolese army soldiers.

The troops forced their way into the MONUSCO complex in Kananga, allegedly in pursuit of a local journalist who had entered the building seeking refuge.

Special Representative Maman Sidikou described it as a "very serious incident" carried out under the orders of a senior officer, and reminded the DRC government that UN premises were out of bounds under the Status of Forces Agreement.

He called on the government to uphold its obligations under the agreement and to hold army personnel involved, accountable.

"Press freedom is one of the pillars of democracy" said Mr Sidikou, adding that freedom of expression for journalists and others, was shrinking across DRC.

Matt Wells, United Nations.

Duration: 2’28″

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