Weekly News Update May 3-7, 2021
United Nations General Assembly 63rd Plenary Paid Tribute to the
memory of His Excellency Idriss Déby Itno, the late President of the Republic of Chad, Head of State
Tribute to the memory of His Excellency Idriss Déby Itno, President of the Republic of Chad, Head of State.
The President, on behalf of the General Assembly, conveyed his condolences to the Government and the people of Chad and to the bereaved family of His Excellency Idriss Déby Itno.
The President made a statement.
The General Assembly observed a minute of silence.
The Secretary-General made a statement.
Statements were made by the representatives of the Comoros (on behalf of the African States),
Kyrgyzstan (on behalf of the Asia-Pacific States), the Russian Federation (on behalf of the Eastern European States), Colombia (on behalf of the Latin American and Caribbean States), Portugal (on behalf of the Western European and other States), the United States of America (as Host Country), Chad and Haiti (on behalf of the Caribbean Community).
Learning from COVID-19, UN Forum to highlight critical role of science, technology and innovation in responding to global challenges
UN Science, Technology and Innovation Forum to showcase bold innovations for advancing sustainable development
New York, 4 May —To build on the bold innovations in science, technology and innovations that produced life-saving solutions during the COVID-19 pandemic, the UN will bring together experts to highlight measures that can broaden the development and deployment of urgent solutions at a high-profile Forum on Tuesday.
The heightened global demand for new, life-saving measures will be a central focus for the UN’s sixth annual Multi-Stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)-- convened by the President of the UN Economic and Social Council--that will bring together governments, civil society, the private sector, the scientific community, UN entities, youth and other stakeholders to identify technology needs and gaps, and help facilitate development, transfer and dissemination of relevant technologies that are needed to achieve the SDGs.
The rapid production of vaccines, the use of artificial intelligence to monitor viral outbreaks, the expansion of e-commerce and telemedicine have demonstrated that science, technology and innovation are critical to building resilient societies.
“The STI Forum is unique precisely because it brings together such a diversity of stakeholders. Only here, so many regulators, policymakers and businesspeople rub shoulders with innovators, scholars and activists. All these players have the power to bring scientific innovation up to scale and advance sustainable development,” said Mohammad Koba, Chargé d’Affaires of the Indonesian Mission to the UN and Co-chair of the Forum.
This year’s Forum, co-chaired by Latvia and Indonesia, will address the theme of "Science, technology and innovation for a sustainable and resilient COVID-19 recovery, and effective pathways of inclusive action towards the SDGs”, particularly relevant as countries continue to combat the health, economic and social impacts of the pandemic amid the mounting pressures of climate change.
“The pandemic has clearly demonstrated that people need to be equipped with skills that help them navigate today’s complex information environment and make well-informed decisions,” said Andrejs Pildegovičs, Permanent Representative of Latvia to the UN and Co-chair of the Forum.
“Hopefully we have also learned that we must do better at not only listening, but also acting on science to avoid crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic in the first place. Science informs us of imminent threats and ways to prepare for them. Our policies and actions must heed it.”
25 winners of the annual Call for Innovations competition organized by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) and the Global Innovation Exchange (GIE), will be announced on Tuesday, selected from among hundreds of global entrepreneurs who are advancing sustainable development in their local communities around the world.
From building resilient food systems to improving maternal, child and new-born health, the innovations demonstrate the importance of leveraging science, technology and innovation for driving social progress, protecting the environment and promoting economic development. For example, Fightback Online System in Nepal focuses on gender-based violence while Swarmob in Chile helps schools with the development of online projects around the SDGs.
The winning solutions help address the impacts of COVID-19 disruptions and will remain relevant beyond the pandemic as they promise to help accelerate progress towards one or more of the SDGs.
Keynote speakers at the Forum will emphasize the critical role of partnerships and the need to include the perspectives of all stakeholders when developing solutions to global problems. Julie Makani, Professor and Principal Investigator for the Sickle Cell Disease programme at the Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences in Tanzania, is set to discuss the critical importance of developing science, technology and innovation capacity to build resilient public health systems.
Rajiv Shah, President of the Rockefeller Foundation will highlight current threats to human well-being and the role of science, technology and innovation in addressing global crises.
The summary of the Forum will support this year’s High-Level Political Forum and its review of progress towards the SDGs.
Over the course of two days, the Forum will discuss lessons from the experience with COVID-19 pandemic, deploying rapid technological change to achieve the SDGs, closing technological divides, and initiating new, open and collaborative science and innovation models.
About the STI Forum:
The Science, Technology and Innovation Forum is co-chaired in 2021 by H.E. Mr. Andrejs Pildegovičs, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Latvia to the UN, and H.E. Ambassador Mohammad Koba, Chargé d’Affaires of the Indonesian Mission to the UN. The first annual STI Forum took place in 2016, following the launch of the Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM), through the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Additional components of the TFM include the UN Interagency Task Team on Science Technology and Innovation for the SDGs, the 10-Member Group, and 2030 Connect, an online platform on STI initiatives, mechanisms, and programmes.
· More information about the STI Forum, including the programme, can be found here: https://sdgs.un.org/tfm/STIForum2021
· A complete list of selected entrepreneurs from the 2020 and 2021 Call for Innovations can be found here: https://stiforum4sdgs.globalinnovationexchange.org/2020-and-2021-winners
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China on the Security Council Programme of work in May 2021
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UNSC Arria Formula: Drivers of conflict in Ukraine
The Permanent Missions of Russia is hosted an Arria-formula meeting 'ODESSA 7 YEARS AFTER: NEO-NAZISM AND VIOLENT NATIONALISM AS DRIVERS OF CONFLICT IN UKRAINE'.
The meeting presented an opportunity to remember the tragic events in the Odessa Trade Union Building on May 2, 2014 that claimed lives of several dozen victims. Since then the call of the UN Secretary-General for conclusive investigation remains unheard by Kiev for seven years and the perpetrators are yet to be brought to justice.
The invited briefers were:
Mr. Dmitry Fuchedzhi, former Deputy Chief of the Odessa Regional Interior Ministry (direct participant of the tragic events of May 2, 2014 in the Odessa Trade Union Building);
Mr. Alexey Albu, former Member of the Odessa Regional Council, candidate to the position of the Mayor of Odessa (direct participant of the tragic events of May 2, 2014 in the Odessa Trade Union Building);
Ms. Anna Tuv, resident of Gorlovka township of Donbass who lost her husband and an arm after indiscriminate shelling by the Ukrainian armed forces;
Mr. Sergey Kirichuk, direct participant of the tragic events of May 2, 2014 in the Odessa Trade Union Building
Mr. Rostislav Ischenko, Ukrainian political expert and analyst who was forced to leave Ukraine after threats to him and his family by Ukrainian nationalists.
The Kissinger Institute on China and the United States with the Africa Program hosted a virtual event on China’s Soft Power Projection in Africa
Watch the recording on the event page
China’s resource extraction and infrastructure lending programs in Africa are coordinated with a well-resourced effort to build Beijing’s soft power on the continent. China’s educational and media outreach programs have expanded significantly over the years. Thus far they have had mixed results. They are welcomed in some nations and looked upon warily in others. Even Africans who are enticed by Chinese offerings do not necessarily change their perceptions of the PRC.
This event examined one of the largest PR campaigns in history, its role in great power competition, and the views of Africans who are often overlooked in discussions of soft power.
UN Secretary-General’s remarks to 2021 Petersberg Climate Dialogue
I thank Chancellor Merkel and the German government for convening this year’s Petersberg Climate Dialogue with the United Kingdom, president of this year’s UN climate conference.
Six months ahead of COP26, and still deep in the COVID-19 crisis, I would like to share my assessment of where we stand.
Last year was yet another unprecedented period of extreme weather and climate disasters.
Carbon dioxide concentrations again rose to a new high – 148 per cent above pre-industrial levels.
This is the highest level for 3 million years – when the Earth’s temperature was as much as 3 degrees hotter and sea levels some 15 metres higher.
Last year was already 1.2 degrees Celsius hotter than pre-industrial times – dangerously close to the 1.5-degree limit set by the scientific community.
Under current commitments, we are still heading for a disastrous temperature rise of 2.4 degrees by the end of the century.
We stand at the edge of the abyss.
But if we work together, we can avert the worst impacts of climate disruption, and use the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic to steer us on a cleaner, greener path.
To address climate change, it is clear to me that we need an equal balance between mitigation and adaptation, backed by finance and technological support.
This will allow both developed and developing countries to fully mobilize to reach global net zero emissions by mid-century and build resilience to changes to come.
On mitigation, I see encouraging signs from some major economies.
Countries representing 68 per cent per cent of the global economy and 61 per cent per cent of emissions have committed to net zero emissions by 2050.
But we need all countries – especially in the G20 – to close the mitigation gap further by COP26.
The bottom line is that, by 2030, we must cut global emissions by 45 per cent compared to 2010 levels to get to net zero emissions by 2050.
That is how we will keep hope of 1.5 degrees alive.
A top priority must be to end coal use by 2030 in OECD countries and by 2040 across the globe.
And the move from polluting to renewable energy must be a just transition, involving local governments, unions and the private sector to support affected communities and generate green jobs.
We can no longer afford big fossil fuel infrastructure anywhere.
Such investments simply deepen our predicament.
And they are not even cost-effective.
Fossil fuels are now more expensive than renewables.
So, we need the shareholders of multilateral development banks and development finance institutions to work with the management of these banks on funding a low-carbon, climate-resilient development that is aligned with the 1.5-degree goal.
I welcome countries that have pledged to end fossil fuel finance and subsidies.
It is time to put a price on carbon and shift taxation from income to carbon.
I remain deeply worried about the lack of progress on adaptation.
Already people are dying, farms are failing, millions face displacement.
There is a false dichotomy that says adaptation finance can only increase at the expense of mitigation finance.
We need both.
With reduced fiscal space, high debts and mounting climate impacts, developing countries need mitigation and adaptation finance in equal measure.
Yet adaptation finance to developing countries is a mere 21 per cent of climate finance.
This represents $16.8 billion dollars.
Actual annual adaptation costs in the developing world alone are estimated at $70 billion dollars, and these could rise to $300 billion by 2030.
I reiterate my call to donors and multilateral development banks to ensure that at least 50 per cent of climate finance is for adaption and resilience.
And I ask them to make concrete proposals so small island developing States and the least developed countries can access climate finance more easily.
The success of COP26 rests on achieving a breakthrough on adaptation and finance.
This is a matter of urgency and trust.
Developed countries must honour their long-standing promise to provide $100 billion dollars annually for climate action in developing countries.
The upcoming G7 Summit is a pivotal moment.
I call on the leaders of the G7 to take the lead, with other developed countries following, to make substantial climate finance pledges for the coming five years.
For some, this means at least doubling their latest climate commitments.
There are six months until COP26.
We must make them count.
I encourage all ministers to start working on an ambitious and balanced political deal that supports developing countries.
And I ask all stakeholders to make sure that their plans and initiatives are ambitious, credible and verifiable.
There must be no doubt on the environmental integrity of our actions – from Article 6 negotiations to private sector net zero commitments.
We have a small and narrowing window of opportunity to do the right thing.
Our future is in your hands.
Let us use the pandemic recovery and COP26 to promote a safe and sustainable future for all nations and people.
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"Chai with Munni" Mothers Day Tribute Ep 2 part 2 | GOH Dame Gloria Starr Kins | AMS Studios
Secretary-General Candidate Dialogue - General Assembly, Informal Meeting, 75th session
PRESS RELEASE - London, May 4th, 2021
Forward officially announces its candidates for the United Nations Secretary-General Selection process: Rosalia Arteaga for Secretary-General Paula Bertol for Deputy Secretary-General Forward, the global political movement, is delighted to announce that President Rosalia Arteaga Serrano and Ms. Paula María Bertol have received the full endorsement of the members in an internal confirmation procedure.
As such, they officially became the movement’s candidates for the United Nations selection process. Andrea Venzon and Colombe Cahen-Salvador -
Forward’s founders - noted: “This marks the first effort of a political movement bringing forward candidates for the highest position of the United Nations. This is a landmark achievement to bring people’s voices in the Secretary-General selection process, for the first time in history. We, the people, want a voice. We the people demand better. We the people, stand behind Rosalia and Paula”.
Rosalía Arteaga Serrano is running for the position of UN Secretary-General on behalf of the Forward movement. President Arteaga is an Ecuadorian politician, writer, lawyer and social activist. She was the first female President and Vice-President of Ecuador. Former Secretary General of Amazon CooperationTreaty Organization ACTO, she was also a member of the board of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. A member of the World Academy of Art and Sciences, a member of the Board of Trustees of the Library of Alexandria (Egypt) and an Academician of Honor from the Royal European Academy of Doctors.
In accepting the nomination, President Arteaga stated: “I feel deep emotion upon receiving confirmation of my candidacy for the U.N. General Secretary by global civil society. This constitutes a challenge, an enormous responsibility, we are making history, with the certainty of changing the world from a vision that empowers women, girls and the excluded.”
Paula María Bertol is running for the position of Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations on behalf of the Forward movement. Ms. Bertol is an Argentinian politician and lawyer. She was Ambassador of Argentina to the Organization of American States, presiding the Inter-American Committee against Terrorism and the Comission of Budget and Administration. In her country, she was Secretary of State for Parliamentary Affairs and Administration and national Congresswoman for two periods.
In accepting the nomination, Ms. Bertol stated: “Promoting women in the highest decision-making positions should be shared by all of us who believe in the differential we bring. I am pleased to accompany Rosalia Arteaga on this path, a woman who has the values and attributes to become the Secretary General of the UN. Millions of people will benefit from her management, imbued with her capacity, strength and empathy.”
Forward has notified the President of the United Nations General Assembly of the candidacy. The movement efforts will now be directed in finding support among member states. Several countries have in the past expressed their support for the idea of a female candidate for the position of Secretary-General and they now have a concrete possibility to make it happen.
It’s high time for female leadership at the United Nations, and now that highly qualified women have put themselves forth, there is no excuse to not break the glass ceiling this time around.
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Forward is a global, progressive, political initiative in the making. Despite global challenges existing - from the threat of climate change to the erosion of democracy worldwide - there is no coherent political force working to solve them within elected bodies. This must change. Let's build global politics. Together.
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