UN / PGA MUHAMMAD-BANDE

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08-Jun-2020 00:02:26
Briefing reporters via teleconference from New York, General Assembly President Tijjani Muhammad-Bande said “we are forced to reflect deeper as to what will happen post COVID, because of the devastation which COVID has brought to social and economic life.” UNIFEED

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STORY: UN / PGA MUHAMMAD-BANDE
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DATELINE: 08 JUNE 2020, NEW YORK CITY / FILE

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FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, exterior UN Headquarters

08 JUNE 2020, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, dais
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, President of the United Nations General Assembly:
“COVID-19 forced all of us to work differently as we negotiate, not the current moment, but we are forced to reflect deeper as to what will happen post COVID, because of the devastation which COVID has brought to social and economic life.”
4. Wide shot, dais
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, President of the United Nations General Assembly:
“World leaders cannot come to New York because they cannot come as single individuals. A president doesn’t travel alone. And we don’t expect therefore to have presidents here. They might have to have hotels, need for hotels at that time, stuff like that. And we don’t know what the medical advice will be, for the country and for the city. Host government is very important in terms of what is possible. So, I think, what we have said is that it is my hope that within two weeks we will have clarity as to the mechanics.”
5. Wide shot, dais
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, President of the United Nations General Assembly:
“The global community has made 2030 an important milestone to achieve the SDGs, and we have entered into the Decade of Action to deliver on the SDGs. Even before then we were worried that financing gaps and other encumbrances will make it impossible for many countries to achieve the SDGs in a substantial manner. And now we are hit with COVID-19.”
7. Wide shot, dais
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, President of the United Nations General Assembly:
“Territorial expansions, under the General Assembly, are not recognised. States have boundaries, when there are disputes, they are settled without force. I think, there is no question. There is no two ways about this matter. I think all we can say is simply, it is the Assembly’s view that negotiations are the means to resolve this matter.”
9. Wide shot, dais

STORYLINE:

Briefing reporters via teleconference from New York, General Assembly President Tijjani Muhammad-Bande today (8 Jun) said “we are forced to reflect deeper as to what will happen post COVID, because of the devastation which COVID has brought to social and economic life.”

Muhammad-Bande explained that the General Assembly has had to adapt its working methods during the pandemic and confirmed the General Assembly’s general debate in September will not be conducted in person.

He said, “world leaders cannot come to New York because they cannot come as single individuals. A president doesn’t travel alone. And we don’t expect therefore to have presidents here.”

The PGA added that “within two weeks we will have clarity as to the mechanics.”

He noted that in 2020 the 75th anniversary of the Organisation is being commemorated, as well as the 25 years since the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. It is also the beginning of the Decade of Action and Delivery on implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Muhammad-Bande said, “we were worried that financing gaps and other encumbrances will make it impossible for many countries to achieve the SDGs in a substantial manner. And now we are hit with COVID-19.”

Asked about Israel’s plans for territorial annexation at the beginning of next month, the PGA said, “territorial expansions, under the General Assembly, are not recognised. States have boundaries, when there are disputes, they are settled without force. I think, there is no question. There is no two ways about this matter. I think all we can say is simply, it is the Assembly’s view that negotiations are the means to resolve this matter.”

Since March 27th, the General Assembly has been working remotely and has adopted 26 resolutions and decisions under silence procedure.
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