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This Week in DPPA: 22 - 28 July 2023

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

Security Council

Pedersen urges Syrian government to work proactively with UN to end conflict

On 24 July, Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Syria Geir Pedersen told the Security Council that months of potentially significant diplomacy had not translated into concrete outcomes for Syrians, or real moves in the political process. It would be another missed opportunity to help the Syrian conflict to come to a negotiated end, at a time when the impact of the crisis is deepening. The Special Envoy appealed to the Syrian Government to work proactively with the United Nations in pursuit of a political path out of the conflict. 

SRSG Simaõ briefs Security Council on deteriorating security situation in the Sahel

The Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) for West Africa and the Sahel, Leonardo Santos Simaõ, briefed the Security Council on 25 July for the first time since taking office. He said that the security situation in the central Sahel continued to deteriorate and insecurity continued to spread southwards to coastal countries.  Taking note of the ongoing transition processes in Guinea, and Burkina Faso for a return to constitutional order within the allotted time, the Special Representative insisted on "the need to unite efforts to achieve this major objective." On 28 July, SRSG Simaõ briefed the Security Council in a closed session on the events that have unfolded in Niger since 26 July. 

ASG Khiari expresses alarm at scale of violence in Occupied Palestinian Territory and Israel

The Assistant Secretary-General for Middle East, Asia and the Pacific Khaled Khiari briefed the Security Council on the situation in the Middle East on 27 July. He warned that, in recent weeks, the deterioration of the security situation in the occupied West Bank continued, punctuated by a two-day Israeli operation in Jenin, the most intensive of its kind in nearly 20 years. He said he was deeply alarmed by the scale of violence and scope of destruction in recent weeks, and he reiterated the call on all parties to take concrete steps to de-escalate tensions and ensure that all civilians were protected. 

Peacebuilding Commission

PBC provides written advice to the Security Council on West Africa and the Sahel 

On 25 July, the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) provided written advice to the Security Council with regard to the briefing on West Africa and the Sahel. In the advice, the  Commission called for increased and coordinated support to the region to combat transnational organized crime, illicit financial flows, terrorism and violent extremism. The Commission also encouraged the international community to scale up action and support for enhancing adaptive capacities and reducing vulnerability to climate shocks in the region. At the Council’s briefing, eight Member States recognized and welcomed the Commission’s advice.

General Assembly holds debate on peacebuilding and sustaining peace

On 24 July, the General Assembly convened a debate on the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC), the Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) and peacebuilding and sustaining peace. The former PBC Chair, Muhammad Abdul Muhith, presented the 2022 report of the Commission, highlighting the Commission’s achievements during the last year. The priorities of the current PBC Chair Ivan Šimonović’s were introduced, which included the need to strengthen the PBC’s role in the run-up to the 2025 Peacebuilding Architecture Review and in the context of discussions on the New Agenda for Peace and the 2024 Summit of the Future. Many Member States supported the call for strengthening the PBC’s role, emphasizing the need to increase the PBC’s impact and to enhance its advisory role to the General Assembly and the Security Council.


Special Coordinator Wronecka briefs Lebanese officials on Security Council consultations

The Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Joanna Wronecka, briefed Lebanese officials on last week’s Security Council consultations on the implementation of Resolution 1701 and highlighted the necessary measures to safeguard Lebanon’s security and stability. In a meeting with caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati, the Special Coordinator shared the international community’s perspective on the opportunities and challenges facing Lebanon. With caretaker Foreign Minister Abdallah Bouhabib, she highlighted the importance of preserving stability along the Blue Line between Lebanon and Israel and the need to accelerate the election of a President. The Special Coordinator also met with Lebanese Armed Forces Commander Gen. Joseph Aoun, underscoring the importance of Resolution 1701.

Special Coordinator meets with Minister of Finance

This week, UN Special Coordinator Joanna Wronecka met with Lebanon’s caretaker Minister of Finance Youssef Khalil. They discussed the Central Bank, as the term of the Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh is set to expire on 31 July. In the absence of an appointed successor, there was a lack of clarity on how the monetary body would be managed. They also discussed the draft 2023 budget that the caretaker Cabinet began discussing earlier this week, as well as the need for implementing reforms, particularly those recommended by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). 


UNAMI leadership meets with senior officials to discuss political developments

On 25 July, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and Head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert met with President Abdullatif J Rashid in Baghdad. They discussed the current political developments in Iraq, the UN role in the country, and ways to boost collaboration in various fields. The SRSG also participated in a meeting of diplomatic representatives hosted by President Rashid.

On 26 July, SRSG Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert met in Baghdad with the Speaker of the Council of Representatives, Mohammed Al-Halbousi. They discussed the latest political developments in the country.  

Deputy SRSG for Political Affairs and Electoral Assistance, Claudio Cordone, met on 24 July with Ali Al-Talkani, Director of Annabaa Organization for Media and Culture. They discussed elections, corruption, climate change as well as cooperation with civil society, among other matters. 

UNAMI Human Rights Office hosts workshop on diversity

The UNAMI Human Rights Office organized an event on diversity in Erbil on 25 July. The workshop focused on the promotion and protection of human rights, with a particular emphasis on minority rights. It brought together 27 representatives from the Kurdistan Regional Government, diverse ethno-religious components, and civil society organizations.

Read more here


Personal Envoy Manzoni facilitates handover of DDR Process beneficiaries list

On 24 July, Personal Envoy of the Secretary-General for Mozambique Mirko Manzoni facilitated the handover of the list of the names and full data of all 5,221 beneficiaries of the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration Process to the Mozambican Minister of Combatants, Josefina Mpelo. The list is a vital requirement to begin the process of attributing pensions to eligible women and men demobilized as part of the Maputo Accord for Peace and National Reconciliation.


Security Working Group urges Libyan actors to create conducive environment for an inclusive political settlement

The Security Working Group of the Berlin Process International Follow-Up Committee met in Benghazi on 25 July. The meeting was co-chaired by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) for Libya, Abdoulaye Bathily, and the Italian Ambassador to Libya, Gianluca Alberini. Meeting participants discussed the need for military and security actors in Libya to play an important role in ensuring a secure environment for elections. SRSG Bathily commended the 5+5 Joint Military Commission for their ongoing work to implement the 2020 Ceasefire Agreement and to contribute to the unification of military institutions. He urged Libyan stakeholders and national institutions to reach an inclusive settlement on politically contested issues.

Read more here


Clothing created by former combatants shown at fashion show “Colombiamoda”

On 26 July, a clothing line created by former combatants and supported by the UN Verification Mission in Colombia was shown on the runway of Colombiamoda, a fashion show in Colombia. The Horizontes collection of the Alado brand was made by former combatants in the garment factories of the "Red Nacional de Confecciones por la Paz". The fashion show featured dresses and stockings, as well as drawings by the children of former combatants. The initiative received the Inexmoda Sustainability Prize for excellence in a social and economic reincorporation project. In addition to the Mission, the project was supported by UNDP Colombia, ARN Colombia, and the National Network of Clothing for Peace.

Climate Security

Pacific Climate Security Assessment Guide launched

The Pacific Climate Security Assessment Guide was officially released on 26 July, marking a significant milestone in the Pacific region’s ongoing efforts to address the challenges posed by climate change. This comprehensive guide is an essential component of the implementation of the Boe Declaration Action Plan, providing Pacific countries with invaluable tools to analyze regional climate security trends and develop appropriate responses to mitigate climate-induced security risks at the national level. The Guide has been developed as a result of strong collaboration between the Peacebuilding Fund, jointly implemented by UNDP and IOM and the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat.

Read more here

Press release here

Next Week

On 31 July, the Security Council will discuss threats to international peace and security. The United States takes over the Council presidency in August. 


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