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This Week in DPPA: 13 - 19 November 2021

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


Security Council

“Prevention is not a political tool but a practical pathway to peace”

Addressing the Security Council on 16 November, Secretary-General António Guterres reiterated that his agenda of prevention calls for a surge in diplomacy for peace, as well as a better integration of prevention and risk-assessment across UN decision‑making, connecting the dots among all drivers of conflict — including poverty, inequalities, and climate change. He reminded the Council that prevention must be at the heart of the collective goals of building and sustaining peace, and this calls for consistent work with leaders, communities and partners alike to build the stability that only inclusive development provides.                                    

Full remarks at the Security Council here

Lyons: “Now is not the time to turn away from the Afghan people”

Deborah Lyons, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), briefed on 17 November on the situation in Afghanistan, including a general assessment of the de facto Taliban administration. She noted that while the formal interactions have been generally constructive, there are limits to concessions they are willing to make on certain issues around women and girl’s fundamental rights and freedoms. “We continue to call for a more inclusive administration, in which government institutions reflect Afghanistan’s broad diversity”, said the Special Representative. Speaking to the press after the briefing, she further stressed the need for the regional and global community to remain engaged in helping the people of Afghanistan: “Now is not the time to turn away from the Afghan people”. 

Full remarks at the Security Council here

Press briefing here

Swan stresses need for redoubled efforts for the Federal Parliament elections

James Swan, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), briefing the Security Council on 17 November, reported on the slow and uneven progress that has been made in the electoral process. He noted that the Upper House will be represented by 26 per cent women, which is encouraging but still short of the 30 per cent target. He said the efforts of Somalia’s political leaders will need to be redoubled in the coming weeks to bring the elections for the Federal Parliament to a successful conclusion, noting that it has been more than one year since the leaders signed the 17 September Electoral Agreement and nearly six months since the commitments were reaffirmed.

Full remarks at the Security Council here

Central Asia

Special Representative Gherman participates in event dedicated to Children with Disabilities

Natalia Gherman, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia (UNRCCA) took part on 19 November in the International Web Forum on “Ensuring Inclusion for Children with Disabilities”, in time for the World Children’s Day and the 75th anniversary of UNICEF. The event addressed the development of an inclusive environment, protection and provision of the rights of persons with disabilities on global and regional levels. “I am convinced that this kind of dialogue with the younger generation is a long-term investment in a culture of peace and trust in the region and an integral part of preventive diplomacy", said the Special Representative.

Read more here


Special Representative Hennis-Plasschaert discusses electoral concerns  

On 18 November, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), was received by President of the Republic of Iraq Barham Salih to discuss the latest political developments in Iraq. Earlier in the week, she held separate meetings with Secretary-General of the Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq movement Sheikh Qais Al-Khazali and former Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi, where she stressed the importance of following legal channels in addressing electoral concerns.

Deputy Special Representative Vojáčková-Sollorano discusses displacement issues

Irena Vojáčková-Sollorano, Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Resident/Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq, attended on 17 November the Area-Based Coordination (ABC) meeting, which provides the nexus between humanitarian and development work. Together with officials from the office of the Governor of Ninewa, they discussed the need for coordinated efforts in Mosul to help Internally Displaced Persons return home. She reiterated the United Nations continued support to the Government in its effort to achieve dignified, safe, and voluntary durable solutions to displacement in Iraq.

UNAMI conducts trainings on human rights 

UNAMI’s Human Rights Office completed on 17 November a two-day training for Iraqi judicial, security and law enforcement officials on ‘Cooperation with the United Nations Human Rights System on Protection from and Prevention of Enforced Disappearances’. On 14 November, the Office provided a training on the same topic for civil society organizations and discussed their key role in providing support to victims and their families to obtain justice and redress. 

Read more here


Third Consultative Group Meeting on Reform, Recovery and Reconstruction  

The Consultative Group (CG) of the Reform, Recovery and Reconstruction Framework (3RF) held its third meeting on 16 November. The Group consists of the Government of Lebanon, Lebanese civil society, the European Union, United Nations, the World Bank and international donors to monitor progress and give strategic direction to the reforms and activities under the 3RF. They discussed progress achieved so far and next steps in four main sectors: the anti-corruption sector, the Build Beirut Businesses Back Better (B5) programme, the social protection sector and the housing sector.

Read more here

Middle East

Middle East Quartet Envoys meet in Oslo

Special Coordinator Tor Wennesland met on 18 November in Oslo with the other envoys of the Middle East Quartet from the European Union, Russian Federation, and United States. The meeting followed the Ad‑Hoc Liaison Committee addressing the Palestinian economic situation. The envoys voiced their concern by developments in the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza, welcoming steps announced by Israel to reach out to the Palestinian Authority to assist with the fiscal crisis .

Read more here


Special Envoy Grundberg visits Kuwait 

Hans Grundberg, Special Envoy for Yemen, visited Kuwait on 15 November. He met with Prime Minister Sheik Sabah Al-Khalid Al-Sabah and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Ahmed Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Sabah. He underlined the importance of regional and international consensus on the Yemen file to achieve progress and reach a negotiated settlement through peaceful dialogue, and thanked Kuwait for being a steadfast partner in the UN’s peacemaking efforts in Yemen.

Read more here

West Africa and the Sahel

UNOWAS hosts 36th High-level Meeting of heads of UN missions in the region

At the invitation of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS), Mahamat Saleh Annadif, the heads of the United Nations missions in West Africa and the Sahel as well as Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Office for Central Africa (UNOCA) François Louncény Fall, met on 15 November for the 36th High-level Meeting in Dakar, Senegal. The discussions focused on the political, socio-economic and security trends in West Africa and the Sahel and on their impact on neighboring regions, including the Central African region. As the security situation continues to deteriorate in Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, and in the Lake Chad Basin, the participants underlined the need for a multidimensional and regional approach to address the root causes of insecurity. They also called for enhanced cooperation to address these challenges. 

Read more here

New initiative to promote social cohesion in Niger

Special Representative Mahamat Saleh Annadif and the Prime Minister of Niger, Ouhoumoudou Hamamadou, launched a new initiative to strengthen social cohesion and consolidate national dialogue in the country. The Special Representative said “social cohesion is not just a theoretical concept, it is an effort that is renewed every day, especially in a context made fragile by the insecurity created by groups and other criminal networks.”

Read more here

Cameroon-Nigeria Mixed Commission holds its 33rd Ordinary Session

In his capacity as Chairman of the Cameroon-Nigeria Mixed Commission, Special Representative Annadif chaired on 19 November 2021 in Yaoundé, Cameroon, the 33rd Ordinary Session of the Cameroon-Nigeria Mixed Commission. Meeting through 20 November, the objective will be to take stock of the progress made by the Sub-Commission on Demarcation, discussing points of disagreement on the delimitation of the border and the assistance to populations affected by the demarcation. The Cameroon-Nigeria Mixed Commission was established on 15 November 2002 to facilitate the peaceful implementation of the decision of the International Court of Justice of 10 October 2002 on the border dispute between the two countries.

Read more here

New Appointment

Awa Dabo announced as new Deputy Head of Office for the Peacebuilding Support Office

Awa Dabo, a human rights lawyer with extensive experience in crisis recovery, peacebuilding, transitional justice, humanitarian affairs and development, has been appointed Deputy Head of DPPA’s Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO). She has held several senior positions in the United Nations, most recently as Chief of Country Oversight and Support of UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Africa.

Read more here


PBC continues to accompany Colombia’s peacebuilding process 

The Peacebuilding Commission met on 15 November to review progress of and challenges to the implementation of Colombia’s Final Agreement for Ending the Conflict and Building a Stable and Lasting Peace and to identify areas in need of further support though the 2022 transition period to the next administration and congress. The Commission congratulated the Colombian Government and the people, noting that only half of those countries signing a peace agreement reach the 5th year, and lauded the peacebuilding gains including in reintegration of ex-combatants, transitional justice and adopting a victim-centered approach. It also raised concerns over the violence targeting human rights defenders, ex-combatants and social leaders, and urged further implementation in transitional justice, rural and land reform, and inclusive political and socio-economic participation. 

“Behind the Numbers”: Hanna Tetteh speaks WPS agenda

The third episode of the "Behind the Numbers" podcast series, released this week, features Hanna Serwaa Tetteh, Ghanaian barrister, politician and former Minister who currently serves as the Special Representative of the Secretary-General to the African Union and Head of the United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU). Learn more about her experiences in government and leading international peace processes. Tetteh also touches on efforts to amplify women’s voices throughout Africa.

Listen to the episode

New episode of “She Stands for Peace”

This week’s episode of the UN Office to the African Union (UNOAU)'s podcast series on women in peace and political processes features Technology and Women's Rights Policy Consultant Marwa Azelmat. She explores the gaps and opportunities for the digital inclusion of women in Africa’s Women, Peace and Security Agenda.

Listen to the episode

For more information on the podcast series, click here

Launch of Diplomatic Pulse

Developed jointly by DPPA’s Innovation Cell and the Qatar Computer Research Institute (QCRI) at the Hamad Bin Khalifa University, Diplomatic Pulse is a new web tool that allows users to quickly search official statements and press releases from all UN Member States. The initiative aims to advance data analytics and internal capacities across the UN family, in line with the Secretary-General’s Data Strategy. The service is now available at https://diplomaticpulse.org

Global Call for Nominations  

The Secretary-General’s Global Call for Nominations campaign to identify Heads and Deputy Heads for United Nations Field Missions has been extended until 10 December. The Global Call aims to expand the pool of candidates for the USG/ASG level positions of Special Representative of the Secretary-General and their deputies.

For more information

Next Week

Special Representative Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert will brief on the situation in Iraq on 23 November. Special Envoy Jan Kubiš will brief on Libya on 24 November. 

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Contact DPPA at dppa@un.org