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This Week in DPPA: 27 January - 2 February 2024

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

Peacebuilding Commission elects new Chair and Vice-Chairs

On 2 February, the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) elected Brazil as the Chair, and Croatia and Kenya as the Vice-Chairs, of the Commission’s 18th session. In its inaugural statement, Brazil identified priorities for 2024, including the early preparation of the 2025 review of the peacebuilding architecture, stronger partnerships with International Financial Institutions (IFIs) and regional organizations, and adopting a pragmatic approach to increasing the visibility of the PBC. The Commission also adopted its annual report, which highlights significant achievements made by the Commission. In 2023, the PBC held a total of 20 meetings and engaged in support of 10 separate country and region-specific settings, broadening its geographic scope, including by holding meetings, for the first time, on Canada, Honduras, Nepal, Norway, and Mozambique. With these additions, the Commission has engaged with a total of 31 different countries and regions since its inception. The PBC also continued to provide advice to the Security Council. In 2023, the PBC undertook field visits to the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to Mozambique, the Central African Republic and Guinea-Bissau. 

Peacebuilding Commission holds meeting on Women, Peace and Security

On 31 January, the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) convened an ambassadorial-level meeting on Women, Peace and Security. Civil society representatives from Afghanistan, Haiti and Niger took part. While recalling the progress made, and political commitments by the Commission in supporting women’s participation in prevention and peacebuilding, some Member States regretted the setbacks witnessed at the Commission on this issue, including with respect to its advisory role. The PBC was therefore encouraged by a number of participants to translate its own commitments into further concrete actions as agreed in the PBC Gender Strategy and Action Plan.

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Special Coordinator discusses Lebanon’s stability with Lebanese officials 

This week, Special Coordinator of the Secretary-General Joanna Wronecka discussed with Lebanese officials and religious figures the importance of safeguarding the country’s stability. In a meeting with caretaker Minister of Information Ziad Makary, Wronecka highlighted the importance of sharing verified information. The Special Coordinator also underlined in separate meetings with the Maronite Patriarch Bechara Boutros El-Rahi and the Sunni Mufti Sheikh Abdel-Latif Derian the need to shield Lebanon from further instability. With the Papal Nuncio, the Special Coordinator emphasized the need for joint efforts to expedite the election of a president.

Special Coordinator Wronecka meets Parliamentarians from south Lebanon

This week, Special Coordinator Wronecka met with Members of Parliament Michel Moussa, Firas Hamdan, Elias Jaradeh and Said Asmar. They briefed her on the ongoing skirmishes along the Blue Line, noting how the clashes were impacting the towns and residents of south Lebanon, including with regard to education, health and other services. Since 8 October, over 80 thousand people had been displaced from their homes, while thousands others had chosen to remain, despite the instability. The Special Coordinator underlined the urgency of de-escalation and a return to a cessation of hostilities. 

Special Representative Hennis-Plasschaert meets with Head of Al-Hikma National Movement

On 1 February, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert met in Baghdad with the Head of Al-Hikma National Movement, Ammar Al-Hakim. They discussed the current political and security situation in the country and the region.

UNAMI launches joint report on strengthening political participation and representation of Iraqi women

On 29 January, at the launch of a joint report on Strengthening the Participation and Representation of Iraqi women in Political and Electoral Processes, the Deputy Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq for Political Affairs and Electoral Assistance, Claudio Cordone, encouraged Iraq to build on existing good practices to support women’s participation in politics. The report, jointly produced by UNAMI and the National Directorate for Iraqi Women, recommends providing training on political processes to women already in politics or aspiring to enter politics; encouraging media to avoid bias against the role of women in politics; and urging political parties to promote women in leadership positions.

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Young people in Buenaventura promote peaceful coexistence through sport

On 27 January, in Buenaventura, department of Valle del Cauca, the UN Verification Mission in Colombia took part the inauguration of the Football Tournament for Peace. The event was promoted by the Office of the High Commissioner for Peace with the support of the Family Compensation Fund "Comfenalco.” It took place within the framework of a Colombia government initiative to promote peaceful coexistence through sport, and to move towards "the eradication of the invisible borders that prevent young people from different neighborhoods to meet in social, cultural and sporting activities."

DPPA Innovation Cell hosts annual E-analytics training course in Doha

This week in Doha, Qatar, the Qatar Computing Research Institute at Hamad Bin Khalifa University and DPPA’s Innovation Cell hosted an annual E-Analytics training course on emerging technologies for advancing conflict analysis and peace initiatives. The event brought together UN advisers and analysts from special political missions, peacekeeping operations and UN Headquarters. Participants collaborated with academic leaders, private technology firms and public sector innovators to create innovative projects, including AI-driven early warning systems and big data analytics for election-related violence surveillance. The training aligns with the Secretary-General’s vision for UN 2.0, promoting innovation, data prowess, digital transformation, behavioral science, and strategic foresight to enhance the United Nations’ operational efficiency.

Next Week

Under Guyana's presidency, the Security Council will meet on the situation in Iraq on 6 February. Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Iraq Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert is expected to brief.