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This Week: 17 - 23 December 2022

This Week in DPPA is a brief roundup of political and peacebuilding events and developments at UNHQ and around the world. 

Security Council

USG DiCarlo briefs Council on non-proliferation and the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action 

On 19 December, Under-Secretary-General Rosemary DiCarlo told the Security that despite the efforts of participants to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and the United States since April, the United States and Iran have yet to return to the full and effective implementation of the agreement. Against that backdrop, she called on Iran to reverse the steps it has taken since July 2019 that are not consistent with its nuclear-related commitments under the Plan. She also called on the United States to lift or waive its sanctions as outlined in the Plan, as well as to extend the waivers regarding the trade in oil with Iran. The USG also noted that Ukraine, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States had written regarding alleged transfers of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) from Iran to the Russian Federation. Those five countries asked that an inspection be conducted. The Secretariat is examining the information available and will report its findings to the Council as appropriate, in due course, she said.

Read full remarks here

Special Envoy for Syria updates Council on deepening humanitarian and economic crisis

On 21 December, the Secretary-General's Special Envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen, briefed the Council on the situation in the country. The Envoy said that he recently visited Damascus to continue discussions with the Syrian government on advancing the political process to implement resolution 2254. Conditions on the ground were worrying, with Syrians facing “an ever-deepening humanitarian and economic crisis – inside and outside the country, and in both government-controlled areas and areas outside government control, where the situation remains most dire, especially in camps for the displaced.” He also said that UN assessments have shown that “parents are skipping meals so their children can eat,” while electricity and fuel, including heating oil, were scarer than ever. “No doubt the situation will only get even more severe as the winter progresses.”

Full remarks here

In remarks to Council, head of UNAMA highlights way forward for Afghanistan 

On 20 December, the Special Representative to the Secretary-General (SRSG) for Afghanistan Roza Otunbayeva briefed the Council on the situation in the country. She underlined that the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) continues to push for wider consultation and representation and that “the only way forward for Afghanistan is through a more pluralistic polity, where all Afghans, especially women and minorities, see themselves represented and have a real voice in decision-making.” She also noted that there had been a slew of decrees that were especially harmful to women and that “their social space is now being restricted as much as their political space.”

Read full remarks here

ASG Jenča tells Council Azerbaijan and Armenia “must abide by their obligation to fully implement the Trilateral statement on the ceasefire of 9 November 2020”

On 20 December, the Council held an emergency session in response to a letter by Armenia. In his remarks, Assistant Secretary-General Miroslav Jenča said Armenia and Azerbaijan had alleged recent violations of the ceasefire brokered by Russia in 2020, and of their territorial integrity. He emphasized that while the United Nations was not in a position to verify or confirm specific reports, it remained deeply concerned over the dangerous escalation, including its possible impact on ciivlians. The UN has urged the sides to take “immediate and concrete steps to deescalate tensions.”

Read full remarks here

SRSG La Lime updates Council on situation in Haiti

On 21 December, the Secretary-General's Special Representative and Head of the UN Integrated Office in Haiti (BINUH), Helen La Lime, briefed the Council on the latest developments in the country. She said that the announcement of resolution 2562 on 21 October was widely welcomed by Haitians, and that subsequent bilateral sanctions that followed the publication of the resolution appear to have generated “a renewed sense of urgency on ways to restore democratically elected institutions.” BINUH has continued with efforts to advance political dialogue, she said, noting that in October and November, civil society groups launched a new round of inclusive consultations on a transitional road map, which includes steps to move the country towards elections within an 18-month timeframe, with a transitional council and oversight mechanism.

Read full remarks here

Security Council adopts resolution on Myanmar, calling for cessation of violence

On 21 December, the Council adopted its first-ever resolution on Myanmar. By the terms of the text, the Council called for an immediate cessation of violence and de-escalation, release of all arbitrarily detained prisoners, respect for human rights. It also called for concrete and immediate actions to effectively and fully implement ASEAN’s Five-Point Consensus and requested that the Secretary-General or his Special Envoy provide an oral report by 15 March 2023 on the Organization’s support in that regard. Twelve Council members voted “yes” on the resolution, while China, the Russian Federation, and India abstained.

Read a summary of the meeting here


Secretary-General meets with Representatives of the Truth and Justice Charter Group on Syria

Also on Syria this week, the Secretary-General met with Representatives of the Truth and Justice Charter Group on Syria. He stressed the need for the fate and whereabouts of the disappeared and missing persons to be determined and disclosed, and for all Syrians that are arbitrarily detained to be released. He also called again on Member States, through the General Assembly, to consider setting up a new international body on these issues.

Read more here


Special Representative Hennis-Plasschaert attends second Baghdad Conference for Cooperation and Partnership

On 20 December, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Iraq, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, attended the second Baghdad Conference for Cooperation and Partnership. In remarks, the SRSG noted that "the centrality of Iraq to regional stability cannot be overstated. And for Iraq to further build its domestic stability, it is incumbent on us all to help foster an enabling environment.” On 20 December, the SRSG met with King Abdallah II on the sidelines of the Conference. They discussed the importance of regional confidence-building.

Read full remarks here

Deputy SRSG Isaczai meets with Iraqi ministers to discuss IDPs, water resources, other issues

On 18 December, the Deputy Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General/Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq, Ghulam Isaczai, met with the Iraq Minister of Migration and Displaced, Evan Faiq Jabru. They discussed the Ministry's plan regarding the return of the internally displaced persons, and the obstacles and challenges facing their return to their places of origin. On 21 December, DSRSG Isaczai met with the newly appointed Iraq Minister of Environment, Nizar Mohamad Amed. They discussed Nationally Determined Contributions, water resources management, pollution-gas flaring, strengthening capacities of the Ministry, climate finance, and adaptation. 

UNAMI Human Rights Office marks 30th anniversary of declaration on rights of minorities

On 18 December, the UNAMI Human Rights Office marked the 30th Anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities by the General Assembly. Alongside the celebration, the Office also held the last of five roundtable discussions about strengthening the protection of minority rights in Iraq and the Kurdistan Region. The discussion centred on the 2022 “Review, Rethink and Reform” theme of the Declaration’s anniversary, encouraging a review of existing mechanisms as well as the role of human rights defenders in promoting the human rights of minorities.

Read more here

Central Asia

UNRCCA organizes forum on youth employment and the prevention of violent extremism

From 20-22 December, the United Nations Regional Central for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia (UNRCCA), in partnership with the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT), organized a regional forum on youth employment and the prevention of violent extremism in Central Asia” in Antalya, Türkiye. Participants discussed how to address challenges related to the spread of violent extremism through increased employment and training opportunities, improved labour legislation, and better access to state support programmes, including financial assistance. As a result of discussions, a set of recommendations for state institutions, private sector and youth organizations was developed and reflected in a roadmap.

Read more here


Two thousand children paint “Colours of Peace” in Antioquia, Colombia

This week, as part of the campaign “We Painted the Colours of Peace” promoted by the UN Verification Mission in Colombia and the organization Redepaz, 2,000 children from Antioquia, Colombia, created a colorful map of the country to send a message of reconciliation. Children of former combatants took part in the initiative. "We want to join the appeal of the United Nations around the world,” said Enrique Sanchez Airas Enrique Sánchez Airas, Head of the UN Verification Mission Regional Office in Medellin. “Today we celebrate that children and young people are engaging in actions of reconciliation.”

Multi-Year Appeal 

This week, DPPA received voluntary contribution from Denmark, Estonia and Portugal to DPPA's Multi-Year Appeal, which will support our conflict prevention, mediation and sustainable peace work around the world.  

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