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This Week in DPPA, 3 - 9 August 2019


3 - 9 August 2019

This Week in DPPA aims to keep you abreast of developments and events on the agenda of the UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs, at UN HQ and in the field, and especially those that sometimes "fly under the radar".

Security Council

DiCarlo: "Parties must fulfill their obligations under international law, to unilaterally release all arbitrarily detained or abducted"
Under-Secretary-General Rosemary DiCarlo briefed the UN Security Council on detainees and missing persons in Syria on 7 August. "While the UN is not able to verify, reports suggest that more than 100,000 people have so far been detained, abducted, disappeared or went missing, largely, but not only, by the Syrian Government,” she stated. DiCarlo called on the parties to unilaterally release all arbitrarily detained or abducted persons and reiterated the Secretary-General’s call for the situation in Syria to be referred to the International Criminal Court.
Read her full statement here
Read more in UN News

Security Council hears updates on peace and security in Africa, Georgia and Syria
Assistant Secretary-General for Africa Bintou Keita briefed the Security Council on 8 August in closed session on peace and security in Africa. Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Oscar Fernandez-Taranco briefed on Georgia the same day. Syria was on the Council’s agenda on 9 August, in yet another closed session, with a briefing from Mohamed Khaled Khiari, Assistant Secretary-General for Middle East, Asia and the Pacific.


New York

Indigenous languages and conflict prevention
The Americas Division of the Departments of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs and Peace Operations (DPPA-DPO) organized a seminar on indigenous languages and conflict prevention on 9 August, International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples. Guest speakers Mathura Bikash Tripura, from Bangladesh, and Luis Enrique Lopez, from Peru, told the audience that conflicts involving indigenous communities, the private sector and governments have often resulted from tensions over the management of natural resources and access to land. Even if indigenous communities speak a mainstream language, mediators who speak indigenous languages and translators also trained as cultural mediators have been instrumental in building trust and understanding among parties at odds. There is a need to re-design initiatives preserving indigenous languages to target both indigenous and non-indigenous communities to ensure a holistic approach to multiculturalism, they stressed.
For more information, please contact DPPA



Nangarhar educators strategize on ways to improve women’s rights
An event organized by UNAMA’s Jalalabad office brought together 35 female educators from girls’ schools in the eastern province of Nangarhar. During the discussion, participants underscored the need for more public awareness on gender equality, the rights of women and the Elimination of Violence Against Women (EVAW) law. Investing in public education on women’s rights is crucial in order to eliminate violence against women and girls, participants said.
Read the full story on UNAMA’s website


Provincial leaders in Afghanistan’s northeast rally behind national peace efforts
Participants at a series of UN-backed events in Afghanistan’s northeast say they support national peace efforts but only if they are fully inclusive, representing all segments of Afghan society, female and male alike, to ensure a lasting outcome. At one of the recent events, some 90 leaders from the provinces of Kunduz and Takhar came together to throw their weight behind ongoing peace efforts aimed at finding a political settlement to the Afghan conflict. Participants not only strategized about the best way forward to ensure a sustainable peace but also expressed optimism about the prospects for a breakthrough.
Read the full story on UNAMA’s website


Central Asia

Workshop on effective border security and management as a means of countering terrorism in the region
Senior government officials responsible for border security and management, counter-terrorism and intelligence matters of all Central Asian states, Afghanistan and Mongolia met in Dushanbe, Tajikistan on 6-8 August to enhance understanding and knowledge of good practices for effective border security and management as a means of countering terrorism in the region. The three-day training workshop was jointly organized by the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia and the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism. Experts from a number of UN entities and regional organizations shared their knowledge and experience with the participants.  
Read the full story on UNRCCA’s website



SRSG visits Sinjar to commemorate atrocities against the Yazidi community
Special Representative Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert met survivors and local officials in Sinjar on 3-4 August. Her visit, on the fifth anniversary of ISIL’s atrocities against the Yazidis, was to highlight the plight of the stricken community and to call for urgent action to improve their lives and enable those who have fled to return home. “It is high time that the survivors, whose bravery we salute, be given the opportunity to return home and rebuild their lives in safety and dignity,“ she stated.
Read more on UNAMI’s Facebook page



Communication course for Armed Forces
The Senior Military Adviser of the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Guinea Bissau (UNIOGBIS) organized a two-week training course in crisis communication and social media management for the Guinean Armed Forces at the amura Military Headquarters in Bissau. Around 15 military press officers participated in the exercise, acquiring skills allowing them to interact with the media, give individual and collective interviews, draft statements and manage information in crisis situations as well as how to maintain a presence on social media platforms to broadcast messages in a transparent and ethical manner.
Read more on UNIOGBIS’ website


First Bissau-Guinean Soap Opera
Around 50 experts in the fields of health, education, justice, peacebuilding and national reconciliation from the Government, civil society and UN agencies in Guinea-Bissau discussed on 5 August the different aspects of Bissau-Guinean life, culture and traditions to be included in the country’s first soap opera entitled “Sun and Sweat”. The soap opera project, aimed at behavior change and developing educational content for peacebuilding, is funded by the UN Peacebuilding Fund, in the context of the Immediate Response Facility project in support of the media sector, coordinated by UNIOGBIS and managed by the UN Development Programme (UNDP).
Read more on UNIOGBIS’ website



Ambassadors Conference in Turkey
Special Representative Ghassan Salamé addressed the 11th Ambassadors Conference in Ankara, Turkey on 4 August.  In his address, he spoke about crisis management and conflict resolution. On the sidelines of the conference, he held a number of meetings on Libya, including with Turkey’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu.
For more information, please contact DPPA



Meeting between Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders
Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci met on 9 August under the auspices of Special Representative and Deputy Special Adviser on Cyprus Elizabeth Spehar. The two leaders announced their readiness to hold a tripartite meeting with the Secretary-General after the UN General Assembly in September to plan the way forward.
Read the full statement here.



Coffee for peacebuilding and reconciliation
The UN Verification Mission in Colombia, on 3 August, accompanied the launch of the «Third Agreement» coffee brand. Representatives of coffee growers, ex-combatants and the Nasa Wes'x indigenous community of Gaitania, Tolima Department, joined in a local pact to produce coffee as part of the peacebuilding process. «Third Agreement» coffee offers an opportunity for development, sustainability and support for the reconciliation process. This project not only aims to strengthen the process of socio-economic reintegration of ex-combatants but will also boost the economy of the local community.
For more information, please contact DPPA


Candidates for Governor of Arauca sign pact for peace and non-violence
In the framework of the "World Cocoa Meeting: from Arauca for Peace" held on 5 August in the city of Arauca, three of the four candidates for the Governor seat of the Department signed the "Pact for Peace, Nonviolence, Ethics, and Electoral Transparency". The candidates committed themselves to include these agreements in their government programs. The meeting was supported by Colombia Transforma, the UN Development Programme (UNDP), the World Food Programme (WFP), the Electoral Observation Mission and the Mission to Support the Peace Process in Colombia of the Organization of American States (MAPP-OEA), with the collaboration of the United Nations Verification Mission, the Office of the High Commissioner for Peace and the National University.
For more information, please contact DPPA


Central Africa

New Issue of UNOCA Newsletter
This week, the UN Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA) issued the latest issue of its quarterly newsletter “Interface”, which reviews the main activities of the office from April to June 2019.
Read the magazine here (French).










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