Secretary-General Travels, Security Council, Syria & other topics-Daily Press Briefing

News sources quoted from: United Nations


Media  – Noon briefing by Farhan Haq, Deputy Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

Highlights: – Secretary-General Travels – Security Council – Syria – Iraq – Ethiopia – Mission to Countries affected by Boko Haram – Afghanistan – COVID Africa – COVID-19/Kyrgyzstan – Remote Learning – Climate Change/ Forests – Road Safety – Noon Guests Today and Briefings Tomorrow.

SECRETARY-GENERAL TRAVELS The Secretary-General will depart New York today to travel to Rome, Italy, to take part in the G20 Summit.

He will stress to leaders that we are at a make-or-break moment, with the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to wreak havoc across the globe, causing developing countries to suffer disproportionately.

The Secretary-General will underscore how we are moving further off-track from achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, with global poverty, hunger and inequalities rising.

Additionally, he will say that the spectre of climate change has become a deadly reality for developing and developed countries alike. Our goal of 1.5°C – and the future of humanity as we know it – are becoming even more elusive.

All of these require the full commitment of the G20, and the Secretary-General will call on G20 leaders to urgently put forward concrete solutions to end the pandemic, unleash a more balanced recovery, and ensure a more sustainable, resilient, and inclusive future for all. At the G20 Summit, the Secretary-General will participate in sessions on the global economy and global health; climate change; and sustainable development. While in the Italian capital, he will meet with leaders in attendance, including Prime Minister Mario Draghi of Italy.

And he will also speak to the press tomorrow. On Sunday, 31 October, the Secretary-General will depart Italy for the United Kingdom to attend the United Nations Climate Change Conference, or COP26, in Glasgow. On Monday, he will take part in the World Leaders’ Summit and the “Action and Solidarity – the critical decade” event, hosted and chaired by the UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. He will call on countries to take bold action and implement new, concrete policies to tackle climate change, and he will reiterate the need to phase out coal and invest in clean technologies. He will also underscore the need for global solidarity to help all countries make this shift.

In addition, he will be holding bilateral meetings with leaders from various countries. He will also meet with his Youth Advisory Group and other civil society representatives and activists on Tuesday.

The Secretary-General will then go to Cambridge, where he will receive an honorary degree on Wednesday, and the next day, he will take part in a roundtable discussion on the ethics of climate change with Cambridge University students.


Speaking on behalf of the Secretary-General to the High-level Debate on cooperation between the UN and the African Union today in the Security Council, Amina Mohammed, the Deputy Secretary-General, said that today’s discussions are taking place in the context of worrying trends across the continent.

In too many places, the Deputy Secretary-General said, we are seeing a rise in seizures of power by force. She reiterated that the military coup in Sudan poses a major threat to the political transition.

And in northern Ethiopia, she added that the conflict continues unabated, despite appeals by the African Union and the United Nations for a permanent ceasefire and unhindered humanitarian access to the Tigray region. Ms. Mohammed said that throughout the African continent, we’re seeing growing cooperation between the United Nations, the African Union, and sub-regional organizations on sustainable development, elections and peace processes.

But, she added, while our partnership is a necessary condition for peace, security, development, and justice in Africa, we also recognize that all Member States need to support these efforts.


The Security Council discussed Syria yesterday afternoon, and the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Martin Griffiths, warned the Security Council members that daily life in Syria is becoming less and less affordable. Over ninety percent of the population now lives below the poverty line, he said.

At the same time, Mr. Griffiths remains optimistic that we will be able to further expand cross-line access over the coming months.

Geir Pedersen, the Special Envoy for Syria, detailed last week’s meetings in Geneva of the Constitutional Committee. He said that the 45 members of the Small Body were not able to move from submitting and discussing initial draft constitutional texts to developing a productive textual drafting process. And he added that an agreement on dates and a commitment to meet twice before the end of the year was regrettably not possible.

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