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This Week in DPPA: 25 - 31 January 2020

25 - 31 January 2020

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

Washington, D.C.

The Future of Multilateral Peacebuilding
Under-Secretary-General Rosemary DiCarlo delivered a keynote speech at United States Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C., on 29 January. She discussed conflict prevention, peacemaking and the future of multilateral peacebuilding. “The international community’s conflict management capacities – be they military, political or humanitarian – are overstretched, and the multilateral system is, frankly, struggling to respond,” Ms. DiCarlo said. She went on to describe some of the UN’s efforts to improve its effectiveness, which she hoped demonstrate that the United Nations remains a vital actor in the peace and security arena.  
Read her full speech here 


Security Council

Grave situation in northwest Syria  
Deputy Special Envoy Khawla Matar briefed the Security Council on 29 January on the situation in Syria. She recalled that Special Envoy Geir Pedersen was in Damascus seeking to de-escalate the situation in the northwest and renew progress in the UN-facilitated political process. “There is a grave and in many ways worsening situation on the ground,” Ms. Matar told the Council, referring to the alarming scale of military operations in the northwestern part of the country. “The Special Envoy will continue to press for an end to the violence,” she concluded. 
Read more in UN News 


Special Representative urge parties in Libya to work towards a ceasefire 
Ghassan Salamé, Special Representative and Head of the UN Support Mission in Libya, briefed the Security Council on the situation in Libya on 30 January. He briefed the Council on video link from Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo, where he attended the 8th Summit for the Heads of State of the African Union’s High-Level Committee on Libya. “I urge the parties and their foreign sponsors to desist from reckless actions and instead renew their expressed commitment to work towards a ceasefire,” Mr. Salamé said.  
Read his full remarks here  
Read more in UN News


Cooperation between the UN and ASEAN  
A Security Council meeting on cooperation between the UN and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in maintaining international peace and security was held on 30 January. “Given that four ASEAN Member States rank among the 10 countries in the world most affected by climate change, we look forward to strengthening our ties with ASEAN nations as they take urgent action to strengthen adaptation and build resilience to disasters,” Secretary-General António Guterres said in his remarks to the Council. “I am deeply convinced of the value of ASEAN-UN cooperation for peace, security and sustainable development,” he concluded.   
Read his full remarks here 
Read more in UN News  



Khost leaders advocate for the rights of children in armed conflict  
The abuse and recruitment of children in the Afghanistan remains a reality that must be challenged, said participants at a UNAMA-backed event in the southeast province of Khost. More than 60 participants, including representatives of the provincial government, police, armed forces, civil society and media, gathered in Khost city on 26 January to discuss measures to help protect children, including from being recruited as labourers, soldiers and insurgents in the Afghan conflict. Participants underscored the urgent need to build a safe environment for children, including through better coordination and raising community awareness on the rights of children. 
Read more on UNAMA’s website  

UN Envoy visits Iran
Tadamichi Yamamoto, Special Representative and Head of UNAMA, concluded a visit to Iran on 28 January. Mr. Yamamoto held constructive meetings with Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, Senior Advisor Ali Akbar Velayati, and other officials. He also met with the Afghan Ambassador to Iran, Abdul Ghafoor Liwal, and members of the international community in Tehran.
For more information, contact us

Women’s essential role in peace efforts spotlighted
The crucial importance of Afghan women’s meaningful participation in peace efforts, locally and nationally, was the focus of two UNAMA-backed events in the city of Khost this week. The events each drew 30 women from districts across Khost to meet with provincial leaders and discuss ways to empower women in the region and strengthen their involvement in peace efforts and the national development agenda. Participants at the events expressed concern that while women continue to be severely affected by Afghanistan’s armed conflict, their contributions to peace are limited to symbolic roles.
Read more on UNAMA’s website






Special Representative visits Rwanda  
François Louncény Fall, Special Representative and Head of the UN Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA), visited Rwanda on 30 January. He met with Minister of Foreign Affairs Vincent Biruta in Kigali, and they discussed regional issues and the role of Rwanda in promoting peace and security in Central Africa. The Special Representative also discussed these topics with Defense Minister Major General Albert Murasira. 
For more information, contact us 



UN-EU partnership in Somalia discussed in Brussels  
Special Representative and Head of the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) James Swan visited the Belgium capital of Brussels on 28 January to discuss the UN-EU partnership in Somalia. Mr. Swan briefed the Political and Security Committee of the European Union on Somalia’s priorities for 2020, including preparations for the upcoming elections, constitutional review, and security reforms.  
For more information, contact us



Election-related workshop in Togo  
Mohamed Ibn Chambas, Special Representative and Head of the UN Regional Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS), concluded a four-day visit to Togo on 27 January. He took part in a “workshop to mobilize stakeholders to help ensure the holding of peaceful and violence-free presidential election,” organized jointly with the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). During his visit, the Special Representative met with the President of the National Assembly, the presidents of the Constitutional Court, and of the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI), the members of the High Audiovisual Authority and Communication (HAAC), representatives of civil society organizations and development partners. He also met with the presidential candidates and called on them to conduct their election campaigns based on their respective programs, and to urge their activists and supporters to avoid inflammatory remarks. 
Read more on UNOWAS’ website 



Special Representative visits Arauca and Caquetá to dialogue with elected authorities   Special Representative Carlos Ruiz Massieu visited Florencia-Caquetá and the reintegration area of Filipinas-Arauca between 29 – 30 January to discuss the progress and challenges in Peace Agreement implementation with newly elected mayors and governors. “Municipal and departmental authorities will be key in implementing the development programs with a territorial focus and in improving security for communities and leaders, as well as in ensuring the sustainability of the reintegration process. Their commitment to peace and their support for the implementation of the Agreement is fundamental, you can count on the partnership of the Mission,” Mr. Massieu said at the end of his visit. 
For more information, contact us 


Women politicians meet in Bogotá to share experiences
More than 30 women who were candidates in the last regional elections met in Bogotá on 29-30 January to discuss the participation of women in politics. Representatives from across the political spectrum, including the new FARC political party, made up of former combatants, discussed the opportunities, strategies, and obstacles they face in political activity. The event "Dialogue of Knowledge with Women Politicians: a meeting from experience" was organized by the UN Verification Mission in Colombia, the Electoral Observation Mission (EOM), and the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD) with the support of the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung. 
For more information, contact us 



Peacebuilding Fund Advisory Group meets with Secretary-General 
The Secretary-General’s Peacebuilding Fund Advisory Group held their bi-annual session in New York between 27 and 28 January. In a meeting with Secretary-General António Guterres, group members underlined progress in the impact, quality and size of the Peacebuilding Fund in driving reforms, and welcomed the launch of the new 2020-24 strategy. They discussed ways to encourage further support from Member States, emphasizing the growing demand for support by the Fund is significantly outpacing contributions and called for all Member States to increase support, starting with Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) members, as the Fund seeks at least $175m in contributions in 2020. 


UN Youth Envoy launches project in South Sudan   
The UN Youth Envoy, Jayathma Wickramanayake, launched a project to strengthen the participation of young women in peace processes in South Sudan on 27 January. Supported by the UN Secretary-General’s Peacebuilding Fund, this project, through a series of trainings, community outreach, and networking activities, combined with media programming, will catalyze increased momentum for peace and empower young women to promote the underlying peacebuilding principles of the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan. 

Peacebuilding Commission: Meeting on Burundi and new Chair 
H.E. Mr. Jürg Lauber chaired an Ambassadorial-level meeting of the UN  Peacebuilding Commission Burundi Configuration on 27 January 2020. On 29 January the Commission elected Canada as Chair for 2020.  


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