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This Week in DPPA: 23 - 29 December 2023

A brief roundup of United Nations-related political and peacebuilding events and developments around the world. 

"The risk of regional spillover" of conflict in Middle East remains high, Assistant Secretary-General Khiari tells Security Council

On 29 December, Assistant Secretary-General Khaled Khiari briefed the Security Council on the situation in the Middle East. He reported that the situation continued to deteriorate and reiterated the Secretary-General’s call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza. The ASG went on to underline that the risk of regional spillover of the conflict, with potential devastating consequences for the entire region, remained high. He also informed Council members of continued daily exchanges of fire across the Blue Line between Lebanon and Israel, which posed a “grave risk” to regional stability.

Full remarks

UNMHA supports local organizations in Yemen on mine action

On 28 December, the UN Mission to support the Hudaydah Agreement’s (UNMHA) Mine Action Officer Iveta Havlickova accompanied local Yemen Executive Mine Action Centre (YEMAC) and the Yemen Mine Action Coordination Centre (YMACC) teams as they carried out quality control activities. Havlickova also observed the teams as they monitored the handover of land that had been surveyed and cleared by YEMAC as part of an ICRC water sources clearance project in Hays, Yemen. Quality control plays a key role in mine action, and UNMHA continues to support local organizations and humanitarian partners with advice on fulfilling the required standards, in order to save lives and protect the civilian population.

UNOWAS holds conference on role of women in electoral processes

On 22 December, the UN Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS) hosted a conference on the role of women in electoral processes. The participants identified cultural, economic, and legal barriers as challenges that hindered women's participation. Discussions also highlighted the positive impact of implementing women's quotas to increase female representation in parliamentary bodies, as well as practices that have successfully promoted gender equality in electoral systems.

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UNOWAS co-organizes event on Women, Peace and Security agenda 

On 22 December, the UN Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS) co-organized its 13th open day on the implementation of the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000) on Women, Peace and Security. Over 200 participants took part, including women and young leaders from the region, members of the Mauritanian Parliament, UN agencies, members of the diplomatic corps, and women's media organizations. Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of UNOWAS Leonardo Santos Simão noted the efforts made to advance the Women, Peace and Security Program in the sub-region, and stressed the importance of good practices to inspire States to make greater commitments to funding national action plans.

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UN Verification Mission accompanies historic land titling for peace signatories in the Caribbean region

On 28 December, the UN Verification Mission in Colombia accompanied the National Land Agency in El Paso, department of Cesar, in its delivery of 1951 hectares of land to 150 families of peace signatories as part of the fulfilment of the Peace Agreement.

DSRSG/RC/HC for Iraq visits Karbala and Najaf Governorates

On 27 December, Deputy Special Representative, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (DSRSG/RC/HC)Ghulam Muhammad Isaczai visited Karbala Governorate, where met with Governor Nassif Al-khattabi. They discussed climate change induced challenges, as well as response and adaptation efforts. The DSRSG also visited the Imam Hussain Holy Shrine and met with His Eminence Sheikh Abdul Mahdi Al-Karbalai. They exchanged views about the role of the Shrine in raising public awareness on issues such as climate change. On 28 December, DSRSG Isaczai visited Najaf Governorate, where he met with Governor Majid Al-Waeli, who provided a comprehensive briefing on developmental projects in the Governorate. 

Next Week

France takes over the presidency of the Security Council for January 2024.