Remarks to Security Council On Myanmar
New York, 28 August 2018
I join you today with a heavy heart. The massive refugee emergency that began one year ago in Rakhine State, Myanmar, has become one of the world’s worst humanitarian and human rights crises. Last month, I visited Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh and heard stories of horrendous persecution and suffering. One father broke down as he told me how his son was shot dead in front of him. His mother was brutally murdered and his house burned to the ground.
He took refuge in a mosque only to be discovered by soldiers who abused him and burned the Quran. I know members of the Council heard similar harrowing accounts on your own visit to the region.
You highlighted in your press statement of 9 May the degree to which you “were struck by the scale of the humanitarian crisis” and how you “remain gravely concerned by the current situation.”
Despite serious military setbacks, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh) may still have around 20,000 fighters and is continuing its dangerous transformation into a covert global network, while focusing on the activities of its regional offshoots, the United Nations Security Council was told.
These were among the key findings in a new United Nations report into the threats posed by ISIL presented to the UN Security Council on Thursday by senior UN counter-terrorism officials.
Reacting to a recent upsurge in violent attacks affecting children, Virginia Gamba, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict, called for those responsible to be held fully accountable.
The last two weeks have seen a suicide attack on an education centre in Afghanistan which killed and injured young students in class, 21 children killed in Yemen when their school bus was hit by an airstrike, and ongoing child casualties in Syria – particularly in the conflict zones of Idlib and Western Aleppo in the North of the country. More.
On 20 August, Ms Nisha Director of Office and UNESCO Representative to the Pacific States was our keynote speaker via video link up from Samoa speaking with assembled Canberra based diplomats in our office in Canberra.
Kofi Annan was a guiding force for good. It is with profound sadness that I learned of his passing. In many ways, Kofi Annan was the United Nations. He rose through the ranks to lead the organization into the new millennium with matchless dignity and determination.
Like so many, I was proud to call Kofi Annan a good friend and mentor. I was deeply honoured by his trust in selecting me to serve as UN High Commissioner for Refugees under his leadership. He remained someone I could always turn to for counsel and wisdom — and I know I was not alone. He provided people everywhere with a space for dialogue, a place for problem-solving and a path to a better world. In these turbulent and trying times, he never stopped working to give life to the values of the United Nations Charter. His legacy will remain a true inspiration for all of us.
My heartfelt condolences to Nane Annan, their beloved family, and all who mourn the loss of this proud son of Africa who became a global champion for peace and all humanity.
A lack of funds means that the new school term for over half a million Palestinian students could be cut short after just one month, says UNRWA, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refuge
The agency’s 711 schools, providing free basic education for Palestinian refugee children in the West Bank – including East Jerusalem – Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria – will open as planned in September. More
MESSAGE ON FIRST INTERNATIONAL DAY OF REMEMBRANCE OF, AND TRIBUTE TO, THE VICTIMS OF TERRORISM
21 August 2018
Terrorism is one of the most challenging issues of our time and a serious threat to international peace and security. From Tajikistan to the United Kingdom, from Baghdad to Barcelona, these ruthless attacks have shaken us all to the core. No country can consider itself immune, with almost every nationality in the world falling victim to terrorist attacks.
The United Nations itself is regularly targeted. Twenty-two people lost their lives in the attack on the headquarters of the United Nations mission in Iraq, which took place 15 years ago this week. Some of our peacekeeping missions are under constant threat.
As the world’s problems grow, multilateralism represents to best path to meet the challenges that lie ahead, said United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on Tuesday, launching his annual report.
The Report of the Secretary-General on the Work of the Organization for 2018, also tracks the progress made over the last year in maintaining peace and security, protecting human rights, and promoting sustainable development.
“I started my tenure calling for 2017 to be a year of peace, yet peace remains elusive,” said the UN chief in the report’s introduction, noting that since January last year “conflicts have deepened, with grave violations of human rights and humanitarian law; inequality has risen, intolerance has spread, discrimination against women remains entrenched and the impacts of climate change continue to accelerate.” More