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This Week in DPPA: 1 - 7 May 2021

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

Under-Secretary-General Rosemary DiCarlo participated in the 2021 Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development at a panel for building partnerships between civil society and regional organizations to accelerate the Women, Peace and Security Agenda. The event was co-hosted by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute and the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. On the question of how the Women, Peace and Security Agenda can be pursued, she noted that "What we need is implementation. We believe that we must demonstrate the importance of women's leadership in public life including peace and security. We must lead by example."

Watch the full discussion here


UNAMA organizes World Press Freedom Day event

On 3 May, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) co-hosted an event for World Press Freedom Day, together with the Afghan Journalists Safety Committee (AJSC), Nai Supporting Open Media in Afghanistan, and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Afghanistan has seen an unprecedented rise in attacks on journalists, with widespread threats and several targeted killings taking place in recent months. Special Representative Deborah Lyons joined Afghan reporters, media safety committees and senior government officials in calling for improved protection for journalists and press freedom. “The voice of the media is the voice of society and that voice cannot be silenced,” she said.

Read more here


Special Envoy holds a series of meetings with Libyan officials and actors

Ján Kubiš, Special Envoy for Libya and Head of United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), continued his meetings with Libyan officials, political and security actors this week. He met with the Chairman of the High National Election Commission, Emad Sayyeh, the Central Bank Governor, Siddiq ElKaber, and the Minister of Justice, Ms. Halima R. Abdul Rahman, among others. In the meetings, he stressed the importance of implementing in full the recently adopted UN Security Council resolutions 2570 (2021) and 2571 (2021), including the call upon the House of Representatives and relevant state institutions to take all necessary steps to facilitate the holding of elections on 24 December.

Read more here


UNSOM provides a virtual training workshop for journalists on COVAX

The United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) organized a virtual training workshop and panel discussion on awareness-raising and promotion of the COVAX vaccine roll-out. The Federation of Somali Journalists facilitated the three-day event, which gathered 45 journalists from radio, TV, and digital news outlets based in Mogadishu, Baidoa, Garowe, Kismayo, Beletweyne, Jowhar, Galkayo, Marka and Qardo. The training reinforced journalists’ capacity to support community preparedness for vaccine distribution, and advocate for the benefits of vaccines as a way to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in Somalia.

Read more here


Special Representative visits South Sudan to discuss peace talks

Volker Perthes, Special Representative for Sudan and Head of United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS), traveled to Juba, South Sudan, from 5 to 6 May, for meetings on the upcoming round of peace talks between the Transitional Government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement – Abdalaziz Al-Hilu faction (SPLM/A-N). While in Juba, he met with SPLM/A-N leader Abdalaziz Al-Hilu, and congratulated him on the signing of a declaration of principles agreement with the Transitional Government of Sudan. He also thanked South Sudan for playing the role as mediator. The peace talks are scheduled to start on 25 May


Special Envoy visits Saudi Arabia and Oman

Martin Griffiths, Special Envoy for Yemen, concluded on 5 May a week-long round of meetings with Yemeni, regional and international interlocutors in Saudi Arabia and Oman, to pursue measures that would provide a conducive environment for the resumption of an inclusive political process to end conflict in Yemen. While he noted that “we are not where we would like to be”, he said he would continue to engage with the parties to the conflict and all involved to offer them opportunities to find common ground.


UN Verification Mission supports a humanitarian corridor

On 7 May, the UN Verification Mission in Colombia supported the coordination of an interdepartmental humanitarian convoy to travel from Cali, Valle del Cauca, to Popayán, Cauca to facilitate the transfer of essential medical supplies, held up due to the blockades in the main roads of the Cauca department as a result of social protests. Local authorities as well as social and indigenous organizations participated. Noting the current situation in Colombia, Special Representative Carlos Ruiz Massieu met with social organizations, the private sector, representatives of congress, police, high government, and the international community. "We agree that it is urgent to cease all violence and to advance in the path towards dialogue and reconciliation in Colombia," said Massieu.


General Assembly talks multilateralism

On 5 May, the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) Chair Mohamed Edrees delivered remarks at the General Assembly Informal Interactive Dialogue to commemorate and promote the International Day of Multilateralism and Diplomacy for Peace. He said that the Commission has fostered a more inclusive and effective multilateralism in support of countries under its consideration, highlighting PBC support to governments as well as women’s and youth groups. Edrees also called for adequate, predictable and sustained financing for peacebuilding. Participants noted the need for a more inclusive and representative UN, which should advocate more strongly for human rights protection, increasing civic spaces for youth, and more robust action against climate change. They deplored the current financial situation of the UN, and called for stronger and better intergenerational and multilateral partnerships to strengthen the work of the Organization.

Read full remarks by the PBC Chair here

PBC Chair mobilizes support for 2021-2023 electoral process in The Gambia

At the request of the Government of The Gambia, PBC Chair Mohamed Edrees circulated a briefing note to all PBC members on 5 May, encouraging Member States and partners to consider providing support to critical priority gaps in funding for the 2021-2023 electoral process. The note outlines a funding gap of USD 1.5 million in the UNDP Electoral Assistance Project and a funding gap of USD 1.8 million in the budget of the Independent Electoral Commission.

Podcast “She Stands for Peace” is back with Season 2

The podcast series “She Stands for Peace”, launched last month by the United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU) in partnership with the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, aims to explore the state of the Women, Peace and Security Agenda in Africa through a series of dialogues with key actors. Season two is out now, with a new episode featuring Bintou Keita, Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO). Keita talks about her work and reflects on the need for local ownership of peacekeeping processes. It can be downloaded on iTunesStitcherTuneInYouTubeDeezerSpotifyAudible and Amazon Music.

For more information on the podcast series, click here

Next Week

Special Representative Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert will brief the Security Council on developments in Iraq and United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) on Tuesday, 11 May. Special Envoy Martin Griffiths will brief on Yemen on Thursday, 12 May. 


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