Tag Archives: UNIC Canberra

United Nations Summit for Refugees and Migrants

UN Summit for Refugees and Migrants 

The UN General Assembly will host a high-level summit to address large movements of refugees and migrants, with the aim of bringing countries together behind a more humane and coordinated approach on Monday 19 September 2016 at the UNHQ in New York.

The large forced displacement of populations is now a global crisis that requires a collective effort by the international community, led by world leaders. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is calling on everyone to work together to define a clear path forward guided by international refugee law, human rights and humanitarian law.

Ms Karen AbuZayd, the Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on the Summit gave a briefing to Diplomats via webex  at our office last week – listen to Ms Karen AbuZayd remarks.

For more information on the Summit

Tuvalu Uses Ridge-to-reef Approach to Sustain Livelihoods

Aug 25, 2016

cq5dam.web.540.390Funafuti, Tuvalu: Coastal fishery stocks have sustained island communities for generations in Tuvalu but is under increasing pressure due to the impacts of climate change and unsustainable fishing practices.

An assessment conducted by the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Tuvalu Department of Fishery in 2013, found that important fish species and sea cucumbers in Funafuti waters had decreased. About 83% of respondents claimed they felt their catches had decreased compared to five years ago and 67% of respondents claimed sizes of fish had decrease compared to five years ago.

Semese Alefaio, a fisherman of over 30 years said, “There’s been a distinctive reduction in the availability of fish, turtles and clams over the years. Nowadays, we have to go further out to sea and spend more time to fetch a decent catch.”
Continue reading

International Year of Pulses – Celebrated in South Australia

13432182_1113699768650150_7925917712893989937_n

Adelaide, 8 June 2016: The versatility and ease of preparation of pulses were on display at a school cooking class at Kilkenny Primary School in Adelaide. It was no ordinary class for the 30 students who had the opportunity to cook a range of dishes with the help of celebrity chefs and VIPs.
The event, organized by the South Australian Division of the United Nations Association of Australia, was the culmination of the school’s focus on the International Year of Pulses (IYP). It had been preceded by short talk on the benefits of pulses at the school assembly by Peter Semmler, from the Australian IYP Committee. Peter, as well as internationally renowned chef Cheong Liew, and Adelaide chefs Gareth Grierson of The Red Door Bakery and Fatema Ayubi of the Parwana Afghani Restaurant, were joined by UNIC Director, Christopher Woodthorpe, to each cook a specific dish with a team of students.

13417479_1113699548650172_182168477635596157_n

With the Adelaide Advertiser on hand to record the event, the pressure was on in the kitchens as knives chopped, pans sizzled and the room was filled with enticing aromas. Having cleaned their stations, composted waste products and set out their dishes, the assembled sat down to a delicious five course meal of soup, frittatas, fritters and fabulous salads as the pulses came into their own in a feast that all will remember.

For more information on International Year of Pulses

United Nations Secretary General Press Conference – Content of report on conflict-affected children ‘will not change,’ asserts Ban

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Sspeaks to the Media at Security Council stakeout on a wide range of topics

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Sspeaks to the Media at Security Council stakeout on a wide range of topics 

9 June 2016 – Standing by his decision to remove the Saudi-led Coalition in Yemen from his latest report on conflict-affected children, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today said it was one of the most ‘painful and difficult decisions’ he has ever had to make, and that it is ‘unacceptable’ for Member States to exert undue pressure as scrutiny is necessary part of the work of the UN.

“The report describes horrors no child should have to face,” said Mr. Ban speaking to the press outside of the UN Security Council chamber, where he acknowledged that the “fierce reaction to my decision to temporarily remove the Saudi-led Coalition countries from the report’s annex.”

“At the same time, I also had to consider the very real prospect that millions of other children would suffer grievously if, as was suggested to me, countries would de-fund many UN programmes. Children already at risk in Palestine, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen and so many other places would fall further into despair,” he stressed.

Insisting that he stands by the report, the UN chief added that the Organization “will assess the complaints that have been made, but the content will not change.”

“I fully understand the criticism, but I would also like to make a larger point that speaks to many political challenges we face. When UN peacekeepers come under physical attack, they deserve strong backing by the Security Council,” he stated. “When UN personnel are declared persona non grata simply for carrying out their jobs, they should be able to count on firm support from the Member States,” he said.

Mr. Ban also underlined that when a UN report comes “under fire” for raising difficult issues or documenting violations of law or human rights, Member States should defend the mechanisms and mandates that they themselves have established.

“As the Secretariat carries forward the work that is entrusted to us, I count on Member States to work constructively and maintain their commitment to the cause of this Organization,” he told reporters.

World Oceans Day June 8 2016

THE SECRETARY-GENERAL
MESSAGE ON WORLD OCEANS DAY
8 June 2016

Healthy oceans are critical to sustaining life on Earth. They regulate the climate and provide a wide range of services, including natural resources, nutritious food and jobs that benefit billions of people.

In order to protect the health of our oceans, it is crucial for us to know their current state, and understand the impact that human activities and climate change are having on them. This past December, the General Assembly welcomed the First Global Integrated Marine Assessment, a truly global scientific evaluation of the state of the world’s oceans. We now know that although the oceans are seemingly endless, their capacity to withstand human activities is limited, particularly as they also cope with the threats posed by climate change. Urgent action on a global scale is needed to alleviate the world’s oceans from the many pressures they face, and to protect them from future dangers that may tip them beyond the limits of their carrying capacity.

Last year, in adopting the landmark 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Member States underscored that healthy and productive oceans will play a crucial role in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Healthy oceans will also play an essential role in climate change adaptation and mitigation, as we strive to implement the Paris Agreement.

On this World Oceans Day, let us all commit to protecting our oceans and using their gifts peacefully, equitably and sustainably for generations to come. Healthy oceans are essential for a healthy planet and a healthy future for all.

At first-ever summit, speakers stress central role of police in UN peace operations

 

United Nations Police (UNPOL) has become a central pillar of the Organization’s peace operations and therefore must be “fit for purpose” to meet the security threats in today’s volatile world, senior UN officials told the first-ever gathering of national police leaders today.

More than 100 national police chiefs gathered at the UN Headquarters in New York to chart the way forward for UNPOL to deliver greater impact on the ground. Today, 12,600 male and female police officers from 87 countries are deployed in 18 UN peace operations.

In his video message to the UN Chiefs of Police Summit, or UN COPS, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said that around the world, brave police officers are making a difference by establishing the rule of law and paving the way for peace and sustainable development.

UNEP-INTERPOL Report: Value of Environmental Crime up 26%

viewimage
Angolan wildlife rangers warm up before patrol

Eco-crime hits record high at up to $258 billion, outstripping the illegal trade in small arms, as international criminal gangs and militant groups profit from the plunder of Earth’s resources

Nairobi, 4 June 2016 – The value of environmental crime is 26 per cent larger than previous estimates, at $91-258 billion today compared to $70-213 billion in 2014, according to a rapid response report published today by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and INTERPOL.

The Rise of Environmental Crime, released on the eve of World Environment Day (WED), finds that weak laws and poorly funded security forces are enabling international criminal networks and armed rebels to profit from a trade that fuels conflicts, devastates ecosystems and is threatening species with extinction.

UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner said, “Interpol and UNEP have joined forces to bring to the attention of the world the sheer scale of environmental crime. The vast sums of money generated from these crimes keep sophisticated international criminal gangs in business, and fuel insecurity around the world.

“The result is not only devastating to the environment and local economies, but to all those who are menaced by these criminal enterprises. The world needs to come together now to take strong national and international action to bring environmental crime to an end.”

UNESCO’s report Re|Shaping Cultural Policies launched during World Press Freedom Day

0305_talk_show_view

What is the impact of the new digital environment on the diversity of cultural expressions, from creation to distribution? How to encourage creativity and civil participation in the digital environment? And how to improve legislation to protect and promote artistic freedom, in particular for women as creators and producers of cultural goods and services?

These were some of the issues discussed during two side events organized on 2 and 3 May 2016 by UNESCO in cooperation with the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture and the Hanasaari Culture Center for Sweden and Finland.

The first event, taking place at the National Museum of Finland on 2 May afternoon, brought together a panel of artists to prolong the high-level debate organized in the morning with the Director-General of UNESCO and the Nordic Culture Ministers on Re/Shaping Cultural Policies.

The panel included Deeyah Khan, Film Director and human rights activist (Norway), Jude Dibia, writer (Nigeria), Adel Abidin, visual artist (Iraq-Finland), Aude Pariset, visual artist (France) and Leevi Haapala, Director of the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art (Finland).

“Until artists are free to express themselves, they cannot make income form their art. Freedom comes first”, stated Deeyah Khan.

UNESCO: Celebrates World Oceans Day

WOD_homepage

In the aftermath of the Paris Agreement on climate change adopted in December 2015, UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission will highlight the crucial role of the ocean in controlling the planet’s climate during the celebration of World Oceans Day at the Organization’s Headquarters on 8 June (Room II).
Long overlooked in international negotiations about climate change, the role of the ocean was taken into account for the first time at the 2015 United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP21) in Paris. A high level panel discussion entitled Moving from Agreement to Action, will examine the follow up to the Paris Agreement and the place of the ocean in the framework of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda adopted by the United Nations in the autumn of 2015.

The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, will take part in the panel discussion, Petteri Taalas, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization and Lisa Emelia Svensson, Special Representative of Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs.

ILO Director-General: Everyone loses if the trend toward inequality continues

At the opening of the 105th session of the International Labour Conference, ILO Director-General Guy Ryder called on delegates to take responsibility for the rapid changes facing the world of work. In his opening remarks, Ryder told the delegates to the ILC that growing inequality, marginalisation and division are not phenomena of the world of work, but “the consequences of what we do, how we behave and what we decide.”

Find out more about the International Labour Conference:
http://www.ilo.org/ilc