Virtual Press Briefing by Spokesperson for Secretary-General

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08-Sep-2020 00:32:08
Briefing by Stephane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

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Today, the UN held a virtual observance event on the first International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies, which was marked yesterday, officially. The theme for the Day is Clean Air for All.

Tomorrow at 11 a.m., the Secretary-General will be joined by the World Meteorological Organization Secretary-General, Professor Petteri Taalas, to brief you on the United in Science 2020 report.

Yesterday, the Secretary-General spoke by video message to the Korea Global Forum for Peace.
He stressed that it is important that the leaders of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the Republic of Korea, and the United States continue the dialogue that they started in 2018.

This morning, members of the Security Council were briefed on the cooperation between the “Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie” (OIF) and the United Nations. Bintou Keita, the Under-Secretary-General for Africa, said that, as the OIF marks its 50th anniversary, the COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the need for strengthened and renewed multilateralism to face challenges of our times.

I have an update from our UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) on the Protection of Civilians sites. These sites were set up to provide sanctuary to thousands of people fleeing violence when the civil war erupted in 2013. The security situation has improved significantly since the signing of the peace deal in 2018 and the formation of a new government. People in the camps are moving freely each day between the sites and towns to go to school, shop in the markets and to work.

I’ve been asked about the situation in the Eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo, as it relates to the protection of Dr. Denis Mukwege. I can tell you that the UN Peacekeeping Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO) remains committed to the security of Dr. Mukwege and the Panzi clinic in Eastern DRC. Although a number of COVID cases among our peacekeepers have had an operational impact, we have continued to work closely with Dr. Mukwege and the Congolese authorities, as well as international partners to ensure that his security needs and those of the clinic are addressed in an effective and sustainable manner.

The UN Refugees Agency (UNHCR) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) today welcomed the disembarkation of 300 Rohingya refugees in Indonesia.

We have an update from our UN team in India, led by Resident Coordinator Renata Dessallien, on their work to support Government-led health and socioeconomic consequences of the pandemic, with over 4.2 million confirmed cases to date. The World Health Organization (WHO) has assisted with contact tracing of 8 million cases, while the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has trained 2.2 million health workers in Infection Prevention and Control, reaching 650 million children and families with life-saving information. The UN team has also supplied personal protective equipment.

In the Amazon region, the UN and humanitarian partners today released a Tri-national Action Plan seeking $10.4 million to support Government responses to the urgent needs in the border area between Colombia, Peru and Brazil over the next year.

A new report released today urges governments to ensure public procurement increases sustainability and does not harm people or the environment.

Today is International Literacy Day. This year the Day is focusing on “Literacy teaching and learning in the COVID-19 crisis and beyond,” especially on the role of educators and changing pedagogies.

The UN Development Coordination Office tells us that four new UN Resident Coordinators (RCs) are ready to be announced. Fiona McCluney of the United Kingdom is the new Resident Coordinator in Albania, while in Cameroon the new Resident Coordinator is Matthias Z. Naab of the United States. In Latin America and the Caribbean, Lena Savelli of Sweden will serve as our RC in Ecuador and Garry Conille of Haiti is the new Resident Coordinator in Jamaica.

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Office of the Spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General
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