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This Week in DPPA: 6 - 12 June 2020


6 - 12 June 2020

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


Afghanistan – Building social cohesion crusial during COVID-19 crisis
In the context of Afghanistan’s long-running conflict, building social cohesion and cultivating a sense of solidarity are essential for fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, said community leaders in a series of UNAMA-backed radio programmes airing across Afghanistan. In the interactive shows – which began in May and will run through June across 18 provinces in the country – experts and radio hosts answered questions posed by local audiences about the pandemic’s impact on their communities and highlighted the urgent need for a reduction in violence to give respite to families coping with the pandemic.
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Central Asia – Meeting of Deputy Foreign Ministers in the region
UNRCCA convened an online meeting of Deputy Foreign Ministers of Central Asian states and Afghanistan on 11 June. The meeting served as a platform for the countries in the region to share their analysis and vision regarding regional challenges in the context of COVID-19 and ways to address them. The online event was chaired by Special Representative Natalia Gherman who in her opening statement underlined that “the COVID-19 pandemic has made it clear that we are now confronting shared threats more than ever before. The United Nations is striving to support each country and each region in its battle against the pandemic in any way possible.” “Regional cooperation on emergency preparedness can save lives and help ensure regional peace and security,” she concluded. Miroslav Jenča, Assistant Secretary-General for Europe, Central Asia and Americas, also attended the meeting.
Read more here


Colombia - Former combatants continue to help communities during COVID-19
In Tallambí, a community located in the indigenous reservation of Mayasquer, municipality of Cumbal in Nariño, southern Colombia, lives a large group of former combatants. The local community, consisting primarily of indigenous people, cultivate lulo fruit and raise pigs, chickens, and fish. They primarily live from trade with Ecuador, and there has been a shortage of supplies following the closure of the border. So, former combatants decided to share parts of their production with the community this week. Close to 200 families received food and cleaning and disinfection products. For the former combatants, living in an indigenous territory has meant close dialogue with local authorities. With the support of the Agency for Reintegration and Normalization and the UN Verification Mission, they are working with local communities to make sure that their reintegration process into the territory complies with indigenous traditions.
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Peacebuilding Commission meeting on the Great Lakes
An ambassadorial-level of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) meeting on 11 June discussed the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Ebola outbreak on peacebuilding in the Great Lakes region. Special Envoy Huang Xia was among the briefers. The PBC welcomed efforts to ensure progress in key peacebuilding areas reflected in the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework (PSC) for the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and the region and enhanced economic cooperation, including for natural resources management. They acknowledged the PBF’s support to help address drivers of instability and committed to remain engaged with the countries of the region, including in support of the Great Lakes Trade Conference scheduled for December 2020.
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Peacebuilding Commission meeting on Central Africa
The Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) held its first meeting on Central Africa to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on peacebuilding efforts in the region on 9 June. Ambassadors observed a moment of silence for the sudden passing of President Nkurunziza of Burundi. François Louncény Fall, Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA), noted that the COVID-19 pandemic is exposing and exacerbating long-standing peace, security and socio-economic challenges in the region. The PBC expressed concern about the impact of COVID-19 on existing challenges. It called for greater coordination on humanitarian, security and development issues in Central Africa and it offered its platform to encourage further support to national and regional peacebuilding efforts. 
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Critical role of Peace and Development Advisors highlighted 
A “Virtual Forum for Resident Coordinators, UNDP Resident Representatives and Peace and Development Advisors (PDAs)”, held on 9 June, brought together for the first time more than 200 participants at the forefront of UN efforts to support national stakeholders effectively respond and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. Organized by the Joint UNDP-DPPA Programme and the UN Development Coordination Office (DCO), the forum was an opportunity to share good practices in addressing the impact of the pandemic across the peace and security, human rights, development, and humanitarian pillars. Participants discussed the Secretary-General’s call for a global ceasefire, ongoing efforts to develop conflict-sensitive frameworks for immediate socio-economic response, as well as the centrality of working with International Financial Institutions. The critical role of Peace and Development Advisors in supporting these efforts, at the country and regional level, was particularly highlighted.
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For up-to-date information on COVID-19 and its impact, please visit:   
WHO website  
UN coronavirus website 


Security Council

Louncény Fall: Impact of climate change on peace and security a priority
Special Representative François Louncény Fall briefed the Council on 12 June on the situation in Central Africa and the work of UNOCA. “The pressing question of the impact of climate change on peace and security in Central Africa remains a major priority in our efforts to prevent conflicts and sustain peace in this subregion. UNOCA has taken steps to strengthen its understanding of this impact in order to systematically integrate it into its analyses and conflict prevention activities, and to develop related partnerships,” the Special Representative said. He also briefed on pressing issues in countries like Cameroon, Congo and Chad.   
Read the full briefing here
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Swan: Unity of purpose among Somalis is indispensable
James Swan, Special Representative and Head of UNSOM, was invited to address the opening of Somalia’s Federal Parliament on 6 June. “We urge you to conduct your work in the spirit of inclusivity, drawing in voices from across the political and social spectrum, and giving prominence to the views of women, minority groups and those who have historically lacked representation. Unity of purpose among Somalis is indispensable as the country traverses this arduous and delicate period,” Mr. Swan said.
Read more here


Gender, Climate and Security

New joint report
A joint report named Gender, Climate and Security: Sustaining inclusive peace on the frontlines of climate change was launched on 9 June. The report, a collaboration between UN Women, the UN Environment Programme, the UN Development Programme, and UN Peacebuilding, highlights the linkages between climate change and security from a gender perspective.
Read the report here












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