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Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Sustainable Development Goals bannerThe new year ushers in the official launch of the bold and transformative 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by world leaders last September at the United Nations. The new Agenda calls on countries to begin efforts to achieve 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) over the next 15 years. “The seventeen Sustainable Development Goals are our shared vision of humanity and a social contract between the world’s Continue reading

Unprecedented US$21.6 billion needed to assist 95.4 million people across 40 countries

 

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27 June, 2016

The United Nations launches today a humanitarian appeal requesting an unprecedented US$21.6 billion to meet the needs of 95.4 million people across 40 countries. This represents an increase of $1.5 billion since the launch of the Global Humanitarian Overview in December, reflecting new funding requirements including in Burundi, Fiji, Ecuador and Zimbabwe.

So far, the UN’s global appeal has received $5.5 billion, leaving a staggering 75% funding gap. This shortfall, which is occurring one month after the World Humanitarian Summit concluded in Istanbul, is jeopardizing critical humanitarian operations in crises such as Syria, Iraq, Central African Republic, Myanmar and the Lake Chad Basin.

Without additional donor support, millions of people in need of humanitarian assistance risk being left behind without adequate access to shelter, medical care and protection. Latest updates on funding requirements at unocha.org/stateofaid.

UNHCR Global Trends Data 2015

 

Conflict and persecution caused global forced displacement to escalate sharply in 2015, reaching the highest level ever recorded.

UNHCR’s annual Global Trends Report said 65.3 million people were displaced as of the end of 2015, compared to 59.5 million just 12 months earlier. This is not only a 21st-century high, but also the first time the threshold of 60 million has been crossed.

Learn more: http://www.unhcr.org/global-forced-di…

UN calls for partnerships in the Pacific and Australia

As world’s biggest advertising businesses join to support the Sustainable Development Goals, UN calls for partnerships in the Pacific and Australia

Port Moresby, June 28 – As the United Nations announced the launch of a first-of-its-kind initiative developed among the six largest communications businesses globally in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), UN in Papua New Guinea calls for partnerships between businesses in the region to build on the initiative.

“For the first time world’s biggest communications businesses agreed to put their differences aside and joined together to advance the SDGs. We see this as an opportunity to invite businesses in our region to also come together for collaborative actions in support of the Agenda 2030”, said Roy Trivedy, UN Resident Coordinator/UNDP Resident Representative in Papua New Guinea.

The initiative, known as the Common Ground initiative was developed among world’s largest communication agencies: Dentsu, Havas, IPG, Omnicom, Publicis Groupe and WPP.

STATEMENT ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE SPOKESMAN FOR THE SECRETARY-GENERAL ON THE ‘BREXIT’ VOTE

The Secretary-General has followed discussions surrounding the referendum in the United Kingdom closely. The vote to leave the European Union came at the end of intensive deliberations and rich discussions, not just in the United Kingdom, but across Europe.

Now, as the United Kingdom and other EU Member States embark on the process of charting a way forward, the Secretary-General trusts in Europe’s well-proven history of pragmatism and common responsibility in the interest of European citizens.

At the UN, we look forward to continuing our work with the United Kingdom and the European Union – both important partners.

The Secretary-General expects that the European Union to continue to be a solid partner for the United Nations on development and humanitarian issues, as well as peace and security, including migration.

He also expects that the United Kingdom will continue to exercise its leadership in many areas, including development. He very much hopes that this will continue.

When we work together, we are stronger.

New York/Cannes – 24 June 2016

‘Medieval’ Sieges, Barrel Bombs are ‘Disgusting Reality’ in Syria – Senior UN officials

23 June 2016

The recent “stuttering momentum” in delivering humanitarian aid to Syria’s 682689Obrienbesieged and hard-to-reach populations must be significantly expanded in the second half of 2016, the United Nations humanitarian chief told the Security Council today, warning that progress made to date was only “a trickle” of the country’s overwhelming needs.

“There is something fundamentally wrong in a world where attacks on hospitals and schools […] have become so commonplace that they cease to incite any reaction,” said Stephen O’Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, in a briefing to the 15-member body.

UN Deputy Secretary-General’s Remarks at the Celebration of the Life of Jo Cox

Dear Friends and Admirers of Jo Cox,

We were all shocked and saddened when Jo was taken away from us under the most brutal of circumstances a few days ago. Our thoughts and prayers are now with her husband Brendan and her two young children.

That we all gather here today at the UN is a tribute to Jo, and is a sign of how profoundly she touched our hearts. But also of how strongly her death has reminded us of standing up for values and principles that unite us – not divide us – in today’s deeply troubled world.
Last night, I talked to Joanne Nichols, one of Jo’s long time friends and colleagues from Oxfam, having served in London and Brussels. Joanne told me about Jo’s generosity and warmth. She said her smile melted everybody. Her sense of humour broke ice and transformed tense situations into real conversations, a real skill. Her humanity and respect for all human beings, and their dignity and equal value permeated and informed everything she did.

“There is more that unites us than divides us”. These words from Jo are now spread around the world. So are Brendan’s words, saying: “Hate does not have a creed, race or religion – it is poisonous”.

In this moment of grief, anger and frustration for many of us, let us ask ourselves what we can do to best honour Jo Cox and her life.

I suggest we do everything to grow stronger and stand taller than ever behind the values and principles which Jo lived for and which are remarkably close to the UN Charter. We must never give in to fear. We must never succumb to violent provocations. If we do, the extremists and perpetrators will declare victory.

So, instead let us be inspired. Let us be energized by Jo’s courage and Jo’s commitment for a common humanity. Let us take actions in her spirit. And let us mobilize all good forces around the convictions we know Jo embraced.

Thank you.

New York, 22 June 2016

INTERNATIONAL DAY OF YOGA SEMINAR

Yoga: More than physical
By Christopher Woodthorpe, Director UNIC
21 June 2016

Canberra embraced the second International Day of Yoga with free Yoga lessons throughout
the city and a seminar reflecting on the topic “Yoga: More than Physical”. The event was opened IMG_6190webcroppedby the President of the Canberra chapter of the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin, Dr. Rakesh Malhotra who organized the evening in conjunction with UNIC Canberra.

In his address, the Indian High Commissioner, H.E. Navdeep Suri, spoke of how the initial resolution by the General Assembly to adopt the Day had received more sponsors than any prior resolution and that this gave a true picture of the global appreciation of the benefits of Yoga.

New tool helps to boost Government’s accountability

Timely reporting on public expenditure across PNG has improved by 41 %

Port Moresby, June 21, 2016 – Timely reporting on public expenditure across PNG has improved by 41% within the last 3 months, since PNG’s Department of Finance introduced a new monitoring and evaluation tool. Before the introduction, only 9 districts out 89 submitted reports on time, now the number increased to 37 districts.

The progress is significant to the Department of Finance, which faces serious backlogs in receiving financial reports from 600 government accounts it manages, with some districts delaying reports for over 50 months.

To improve its financial reporting and control functions, Department of Finance with UNDP support launched new management system that aims to boost efficiency, transparency and accountability.

INTERNATIONAL DAY FOR THE ELIMINATION OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN CONFLICT

UN DEPUTY SECRETARY-GENERAL ON THE ELIMINATION OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN CONFLICT
New York, 21 June 2016

In conflicts around the world, women and girls, men and boys, are subjected to horrendous acts of sexual violence. These acts, rape, sexual slavery, forced marriage, and sexual torture, constitute abhorrent violations of human rights and human dignity.

June 19, 2008, the international community decided to take action to elevate conflict-related sexual violence to the international peace and security agenda. This was done through the adoption of Security Council Resolution 1820. I remember those years that we saw more and more that sexual violence was used as a method of warfare, and it was indeed appropriate to bring to the attention of the Security Council.

Last year, the General Assembly decided to commemorate this breakthrough. The intention was to help to break the silence that so often surrounds these heinous crimes, by designating the June 19 as the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict.

This day reminds us of our mission. We must stand in solidarity with the victims and survivors of sexual violence. And we must support those working on the frontlines to fight this scourge.

OPED: United Nations Secretary-General: Outcomes of the World Humanitarian Summit

A Turning Point for Humanitarian Action

At the recent World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul, more than 9,000 participants made a three-fold commitment to people in crisis all over the world. We pledged to improve our response to people caught up in natural disasters and conflicts; to empower them as the agents of their own recovery; and to summon greater political will to prevent and end the wars which are causing so much suffering.

The challenge we face is unprecedented. Around the world, 130 million people need humanitarian aid. More than 60 million people have been forcibly displaced from their homes.  Despite their precarious conditions, there is a severe lack of funding to assist them — raising basic questions about global solidarity in a world of great wealth.

The massive extent of this challenge meant this had to be a different kind of summit. For the first time, people affected by crises worked alongside world leaders, heads of NGOs, civil society and the private sector to find solutions. This diversity of voices was an achievement in itself.