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This Week in DPPA: 20 - 26 August 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 situation at Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant 

On 23 August, the Security Council held a meeting on the situation at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant in Ukraine. Briefing the Council, Under-Secretary-General Rosemary DiCarlo stressed that military activity at the plant presented a serious threat: “any potential damage to Zaporizhzhia … leading to a possible nuclear accident would have catastrophic consequences.” Additionally, any damage leading to the plant being cut from the Ukrainian power grid would have devastating humanitarian implications, particularly with the approach of winter, she said. 


Read the USG’s full remarks here

War in Ukraine is “weakening the foundations of our international system,” USG tells Security Council 

On 24 August, the Council met again to discuss Ukraine, marking the six-month anniversary of the conflict that began 24 March. Under-Secretary-General DiCarlo detailed the toll of the war on the country and appealed for an end to the fighting. She said that the United Nations revised flash appeal required $4.3 billion to support 17.7 million people in need of assistance through December 2022. “In deepening global divisions and exacerbating mistrust in our institutions, the war is weakening the foundations of our international system,” she said. “The consequences of a breakdown in how the world manages questions of peace and security are frightening to contemplate.” 


Read the USG’s full remarks here

Special Coordinator for Middle East Peace Process updates Council on ceasefire 

On 25 August, Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland briefed the Council on the latest developments on the ground. He stressed that while the ceasefire prevented the tensions between Israel and Palestinian Islamic Jihad from escalating into a “full-scale war,” the underlying drivers of the conflict are still unresolved. “The status quo is not a strategy nor a strategic option – not for positive change on the ground nor for a restart of talks between the two sides,” he cautioned. 

Read full remarks here


Special Envoy on Myanmar visits Bangladesh on five-year mark of Rohingya mass displacement 

From 22-25 August, Special Envoy Noeleen Heyzer visited Bangladesh. The Special Envoy spent two days in the country’s refugee camps, where she spoke with refugees who shared their stories of the hardships they had endured and witnessed first-hand the critical assistance provided through the cooperation of the Government of Bangladesh, UN agencies and civil society organizations. On 25 August, which marks five-years since the forced mass displacement of Rohingya from Myanmar, the Special Envoy met with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and discussed the challenges facing Bangladesh as host of one of the world’s largest refugee populations.  She also highlighted Bangladesh’s pivotal role in working with the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and advocated for enhanced education and vocational training as powerful tools to prepare Rohingya refugees to contribute to a more inclusive and peaceful future in Myanmar. 


UN Special Coordinator on Lebanon visits Tripoli, meets with local officials 

On 23 August, United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon Joanna Wronecka visited the city of Tripoli in north Lebanon. She met with local authorities and members of parliament, as well as non-governmental organizations working to promote reconciliation, capacity-building and opportunities for youth. Highlighting the importance of functioning state institutions and people-oriented policies, the Special Coordinator stressed that “Lebanon’s long-term stability and recovery also depend on supporting and developing the country’s different regions and addressing their needs”.  

UN Special Coordinator Meets Lebanon’s members of Feminist Civil Society Platform 

This week, UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon Joanna Wronecka met with representatives of the Feminist Civil Society Platform to discuss opportunities and challenges to promote women’s rights and gender equality in Lebanon. Members of the platform underscored that different initiatives to promote women’s rights and participation in political and public life were ongoing, including advocacy for a gender quota, monitoring of gender-based discriminatory practices, and media capacity building to address gender discrimination and violence against women.  


She Stands For Peace Season 3 out now

This week’s episode of UNOAU's podcast series on women in peace and political processes features Parfait Onyanga-Anyanga, Special Representative of the Secretary-General to the African Union, and Mme Bineta Diop, African Union’s Special Envoy on Women, Peace and Security. In this episode, they discuss the partnership between the United Nations and the African Union and coordinated activities of stakeholders towards achieving the Women, Peace and Security Agenda in Africa.

Listen to the episode

For more information on the podcast series, click here


Special Representative for Iraq meets with political leaders of the Kurdistan region 

On 22 August, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert met in Erbil with the Deputy Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Region, Qubad Talabani. They discussed the current political situation in the country, including the need to overcome the ongoing crisis for the benefit of the Iraqi people. On 23 August, the Special Representative met in Sulaymania with the president of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, Bafel Talabani. They discussed the political situation in the country and the need to overcome the ongoing crisis through dialogue.   

United Nations staff in Iraq mark 19th anniversary of the attack on UN headquarters in Baghdad 

On 21 August, United Nations staff in Iraq commemorated the 19th anniversary of the attack on the UN HQ in Baghdad.  On 19 August 2003, a truck bomb targeted the headquarters of the UN mission in Baghdad, killing 22 colleagues, including Special Representative Sérgio Vieira de Mello, and injuring about 150 others.   


Read Deputy Special Representative Claudio Cordone's remarks on the occasion here 

UNAMI Human Rights Office holds discussion on strengthening accountability on violence against women and girls 

On 23 August, the UNAMI Human Rights Office, in coordination with the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights in Muthanna, held a roundtable discussion in Samawa on the prevention and accountability for killings of women in the southern governorates of Iraq. Participants included civil activists, women’s leaders, the Family Protection and Community Police units, journalists, Samawa Health Directorate, and the Women Empowerment unit of the office of the Governor. They exchanged ideas on strengthening accountability mechanisms for the prevention of violence against women and girls, including protecting their right to life, which is challenged by honor killings. 

Great Lakes Region

Intelligence and Security Experts from Africa’s Great Lakes strategize to better fight criminal activities by illegal armed groups in the region  

Heads of intelligence and security services from several countries of the African Great Lakes region met in Kampala, Republic of Uganda, on 24 August 2022 to review the regional security situation and to put in place security monitoring mechanisms.  The region has seen an increase in criminal activities by illegal armed groups, especially in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Other participants at the meetings included representatives from the Office of the UN Special Envoy for the Great Lakes region, the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, the African Union and the Southern African Development Community. 

Special Envoy for Great Lakes Region holds meeting for women entrepreneurs on business strategies 

Under the leadership of the Office of the Special Envoy , women entrepreneurs from the region met in Arusha, Tanzania, on 25 August, to explore ways to further their economic participation. The purpose of the meeting was to create a trading manual for women entrepreneurs in the Great Lakes region to help improve their position in regional business and trade. The meeting brought together participants from the Great Lakes Women Entrepreneurs Network established in December 2021 as a platform to foster cooperation, integration, and inclusion. 


Colombia Mission hosts workshop on documentary photography in Anorí 

Between 18 and 21 August, a group of 45 photojournalists, including 24 former combatants from different regions of Colombia, took part in the Second Workshop on Documentary Photography for Peace: "Anorí, photography captures the mountain," in the reintegration area of La Plancha, in Anorí, Antioquia. This initiative, supported by the UN Verification Mission in Colombia, UNDP Colombia, the European Union in Colombia, Comfama and Colectivo Miradas, was led by photographers Sara Aliaga (from Bolivia) and Federico Ríos (from Colombia). A documentary shot during the workshop will be edited and presented in November.

Multi-Year Appeal 

This week, DPPA received voluntary contributions from Czech Republic in support of our Mediation Support Unit, Denmark to support the work of the Office of the Special Envoy for Syria, and Switzerland for our activities related to mediation and electoral assistance. 


Members of the Seventh Advisory Group of the Peacebuilding Fund  

On 25 August, Secretary-General António Guterres appointed the members of the Seventh Advisory Group of the Peacebuilding Fund. In accordance with the Terms of Reference of the United Nations Peacebuilding Fund adopted by the General Assembly, the Secretary-General appoints ten eminent individuals for a term of two years, taking into consideration gender and regional balance. Candidates are nominated by Member States.   


Read the press release here 

Next Week

France will hold the monthly presidency in September. 

On 2 September, there will be a General Assembly joint debate on the Report of the Peacebuilding Commission, peacebuilding and sustaining peace and the Report of the Secretary-General on the Peacebuilding Fund. 

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Contact DPPA at dppa@un.org