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This Week in DPPA: 3 - 9 October 2020

3 - 9 October 2020

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

Security Council

La Lime: Key aspects of the elector process in Haiti must be addressed
Special Representative Helen La Lime on 5 October updated the Security Council on the situation in Haiti and the work of BINUH in the country. She pointed out that key aspects of the electoral process, such as the electoral framework and calendar, must be addressed in order to reduce the risk of contested elections and further violence. “Above all else, it is the ability of Haiti’s political and economic classes to compromise and resolve their differences without resorting to violence, as well as the capacity of the country’s fledgling institutions to take the necessary steps that will determine whether free, fair and inclusive elections will be held in a conducive climate; whether attempts to restart the economy and put the country back on a positive development trajectory will succeed; and, whether the perennial issue of impunity will finally be addressed,” Ms. La Lime concluded.
Read her full remarks here
Read more in UN News


Great Lakes

Special Envoy visits several countries to discuss matters of peace, security and development
The Special Envoy for the Great Lakes region, Huang Xia, undertook a series of trips in the region and met with several officials, including Rwanda’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Vincent Biruta; Burundi’s Minister of National Defense and Veteran Affairs, Alain Tribert Mutabazi; as well as Presidents João Lourenço of Angola, Denis Sassou Nguesso of the Republic of Congo, and Félix Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The two-weeks’ journey ended in Kampala, Uganda, on 5 October, where the Special Envoy also met with the country’s Minister of Defense and Veteran Affairs Adolf Mwesige. Mr. Xia briefed his hosts on the UN Strategy for Peace Consolidation, Conflict Resolution and Prevention in the Great Lakes region, and shared views on matters of peace, security and development.



High-level event on Libya
“Resolving the crisis in Libya remains a top priority for the United Nations,” Secretary General António Guterres said while opening the high-level event on Libya held on 5 October. “Libya’s future is at stake and I call on all Libyans to continue to work towards a lasting ceasefire, to contribute constructively to the UN-facilitated Libyan Political Dialogue Forum; and to always act with the interests of the country’s people foremost in mind,” he stated. In a press encounter following the event, Acting Special Representative and Head of UNSMIL Stephanie Williams said participants had called for an inclusive political process where all Libyan political and social components are represented.
Read the Secretary General’s remarks here
Read Ms. Williams remarks here
A summary of the meeting can be found here


Women as negotiators, mediators and peace brokers
Women need to be meaningfully involved to end the conflict, including in ongoing peace negotiations, said panellists appearing in radio programs in the country’s southeast and eastern provinces. Speaking during a series of UNAMA-backed radio discussions in the provinces of Ghazni, Khost, Kunar, Laghman, Nangarhar, Nuristan, Paktika and Paktya, participants discussed the importance of women’s inclusion and participation in peace and security. They stressed that women are skilled peace brokers, experienced negotiators and key to the success and subsequent implementation of any future peace deals.
Read more here

Afghanistan and international partners prepare for 2020 Afghanistan Conference
Afghanistan and international partners on 6 October in Kabul officially launched preparations for the 2020 Afghanistan Conference, scheduled to take place 23-24 November at the Palais des Nations in Geneva and be co-hosted by the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Finland and the UN. The launch event was attended by representatives of more than 70 countries and international organizations, as well as civil society representatives either virtually or physically at the Presidential Char Chinar Palace in the Afghan capital. “As critical peace talks progress in Doha, the international community recommits its stand with the Afghan people to ending the war and building a better future with stability, sound governance and greater economic opportunities,” Special Representative Deborah Lyons said.
Read more here

Central Asia

Water diplomacy on the agenda at online seminar
UNRCCA on 7 October organized a capacity-building seminar on water diplomacy practices related to international law and international cooperation in the field of safety of dams and other hydraulic facilities. The online seminar was held in cooperation with the UN Economic Commission for Europe and international experts. Representatives of relevant ministries and institutions of the Central Asian countries and Afghanistan participated in the event. In her opening statement, Special Representative Natalia Gherman noted the importance of joint work on strengthening regional interaction, including in the field of water management, energy and environmental protection. In particular, she noted efforts and initiatives of the five Central Asian states in enhancing good neighborly relations and deepening the regional dialogue.  
Read more here


Meeting with the President
Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, Special Representative and Head of UNAMI, on 5 October was received in Baghdad by His Excellency Dr. Barham Salih, President of the Republic of Iraq. They discussed the current political situation in the country, including preparations for the forthcoming early elections.

Deputy Special Representative visits Basra
Irena Vojáčková-Sollorano, Deputy Special Representative and Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Iraq, visited Basra on 6 October. She reaffirmed the UN’s long-term commitment to supporting the Government of Iraq in current challenges, particularly in the wake of COVID-19.
Read more here

COVID-19 awareness campaign   
The UNAMI Human Rights Office COVID-19 awareness campaign continues in Baghdad Governorate with the painting of murals in several neighborhoods. Aimed at increasing compliance with measures to prevent COVID-19 transmission, the campaign is being implemented by Iraqi artists.









Patients return home to Yemen after medical treatment in Jordan
The World Health Organization (WHO) Representative for Yemen, Altaf Musani; UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen Lise Grande, and Special Envoy Martin Griffiths welcomed on 4 October the return of patients who had been receiving medical care in Jordan for diseases and conditions that cannot be treated in Yemen. "We are grateful to everyone who collaborated in making this medical air bridge happen. However, opening the Sana'a airport is one of the sustainable ways for Yemenis to receive life-saving medical treatment abroad", Special Envoy Griffiths said.
Read more here


New Caledonia

Self-determination referendum
The second self-determination referendum in New Caledonia took place on 4 October, with the South Pacific territory rejecting independence from France. A 12-member panel of electoral experts followed the referendum and will report to the Secretary General on its conduct. The UN experts met with the main actors, including political, administrative and traditional authorities as well as with leaders of political parties, representatives of civil society organizations, members of the Elders’ Committee and of the Commission of Vote Controlling, in charge of ensuring the legality and integrity of the vote.
More on our work on elections here



In Chocó, reintegration strengthens community processes
A cooperative of former combatants and a women's association in the community of Jiguamiandó, Carmen del Darién, in the department of Chocó, western Colombia, are an example of how reintegration with a community approach builds territorial peace. On 5 October, they received threshing machines from the World Food Programme for the processing of rice and corn crops. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the group is also moving forward with a collective wood-processing project that will benefit households in the area's ethnic communities. This process is supported by the UN Verification Mission in Colombia, the Agency for Reintegration and Normalization (ARN), and the United Nations Development Program.


Interview with the Development Coordinator in Kosovo
In the latest episode of “Building Peace during the Pandemic”, Ulrika Richardson, the UN Development Coordinator in Kosovo, spoke with Marc-André Franche, Chief, Financing for Peacebuilding, Peacebuilding Support Office, on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on peacebuilding efforts in Kosovo. Ms. Richardson explained how the pandemic had exacerbated the fragilities in the socio-economic system, and adversely impacted the social fabric within communities and various ethnic groups. She highlighted the efforts of the UN Kosovo team in adapting its work to the new reality by reaching out more to civil society, and collaborating with NGOs, to gain back the civic space lost during the pandemic. The UN is also increasing its efforts for greater gender equality and women’s empowerment as well as growing opportunities for inter-ethnic dialogue and space among the people.
Watch the video here


Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) meeting on Burkina Faso
In a meeting on 8 October convened by the Peacebuilding Commission Chair, Ambassador Bob Rae, Permanent Representative of Canada, the Member States discussed ways of mitigating the impact of COVID-19 on ongoing reforms in Burkina Faso. Mr. Christophe Joseph Marie Dabiré, Prime Minister of Burkina Faso, briefed together with representatives from the Ministries of Economy and Women, as well as Agnes Bado, the Chairwoman of the National Union of Women Entrepreneurs. The Commission expressed concern about the precarious security situation and its humanitarian and socio-economic consequences, and how these are being exacerbated as a result of the pandemic. The disproportionate impact on women, whose trading and domestic activities have been severely affected, was discussed at length. The Commission congratulated the government for its immediate measures in response to the pandemic and welcomed preparations for the 22 November elections, despite the challenges. It recognized the positive response by partners following the 5 March PBC meeting for the government’s priorities identified through the Prevention and Peacebuilding Assessment and contained in the Priority Action Matrix of the Emergency Program for the Sahel (MAP-PUS), and confirmed its commitment for continuous support. It also recognized and further encouraged efforts of the UN, including through the Peacebuilding Fund, as well as other partners to integrate COVID-19 related challenges in their assistance to Burkina Faso.
The full recording is available here 


Women, Peace and Security

Event next week
DPPA, PRIO and CMI on 15 October will host a discussion with the theme “Imagining the Future of Inclusive Mediation: Learning from pioneering and young women leaders”. Participants include: Under-Secretary-General Rosemary DiCarlo, Hanna Tetteh, Special Representative to the African Union and Head of UNOAU; Miriam Coronel-Ferrer, lead negotiator for Philippines talks with the National Democratic Front and now member of the UN Standby team of Senior Mediation Advisers; Emmily Koiti, South Sudanese youth representative and activist; Hajer Sharief, Libyan human rights advocate and co-founder of “Together We Build It”.
Follow us on Twitter for more information about the event.


The Work of Peace

Virtual exhibit
Remember to check out our virtual exhibit – The Work of Peace. It highlights the work of the UN in preventive diplomacy, good offices, mediation and elections over the past 75 years, and looks ahead at what the future may hold for this work.
Enter here


















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Contact DPPA at dppa@un.org