Tag Archives: UN

UN – COVID-19 worsening gender inequalities.

United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, has warned that the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is worsening existing gender inequalities.

In a video message on Thursday, Guterres said the little progress in gender equality and women’s rights over the decades was at risk of being reversed by the disease.

He said although there were indications that the virus might be killing more men than women, it was having “devastating social and economic consequences for women and girls”.

He said: “Nearly 60 per cent of women around the world work in the informal economy, earning less, saving less, and at greater risk of falling into poverty.

“As markets fall and businesses close, millions of women’s jobs have disappeared.

“At the same time, as they are losing paid employment, women’s unpaid care work has increased exponentially as a result of school closures and the increased needs of older people.

“These are combining as never before to defeat women’s rights and deny women’s opportunities.

“Progress lost takes years to regain. Teenage girls out of school may never return.”

NobleReporters learnt that the message followed the launch of a report titled, “Policy Brief: The Impact of COVID-19 on Women”.

The 16-page document explores how the novel disease is changing the lives of women and girls.

It suggested measures that should accompany both the immediate response and longer-term recovery efforts.

Guterres urged governments to “put women and girls at the centre of their efforts to recover from COVID-19”.

“That starts with women as leaders, with equal representation and decision-making power.

“Measures to protect and stimulate the economy, from cash transfers to credits and loans, must be targeted at women,” he said.

The Secretary-General also advocated the expansion of social safety nets for women and recognition of unpaid care work as a vital contribution to the economy.

“Gender equality and women’s rights are essential to getting through this pandemic together, to recovering faster, and to building a better future for everyone,” he added.


Former U.N secretary-general dies at 100.

Peruvian diplomat and former U.N. Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar is dead. He died at his home in Lima. He was aged 100.

Perez de Cuellar was a two-time head of the United Nations, which he led from 1982 to 1991 and played a crucial role in ending the Iran-Iraq war of 1980 to 1988.

His tenure coincided with the iciest years of the Cold War, which gave way to the end of the Soviet Union and greater efforts at international cooperation.

Perez de Cuellar was the fifth head of the world body and its only leader from Latin America to date.

U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres hailed Perez de Cuellar’s crucial role in securing the release of American hostages held in Lebanon as well as peace accords in Cambodia and El Salvador during his time in office.

“He was an accomplished statesman, a committed diplomat and a personal inspiration who left a profound impact on the United Nations and our world,” Guterres said.

Perez de Cuellar once said his proudest achievements were his role in securing independence for Namibia and the peace accord that ended the Iran-Iraq conflict. However, his diplomatic efforts were unable to halt the outbreak of the Gulf War in 1990.

After leaving the world body, Perez de Cuellar made an unsuccessful bid for the Peruvian presidency in 1995, losing to incumbent Alberto Fujimori.

He served as prime minister in a national unity government for roughly eight months after Fujimori’s administration collapsed amid a corruption scandal in late 2000.

Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra expressed in a statement on Wednesday his profound regret for Perez de Cuellar’s death, saying the diplomat had “dedicated his entire life to the task of glorifying our country”.


UN to end Libyan war

The United Nations Security Council on Wednesday evening passed a resolution aimed at ending the Libyan conflict that has claimed thousands of lives.

A World Health Organisation (WHO) report put the total casualty figure at no fewer than 2,280, comprising 2,000 fighters and 280 civilians, by mid-January.

Coming after weeks of diplomatic consultations in the 15-member council, the United Kingdom-drafted resolution sailed through with 14 votes to zero, with Russia abstaining.

Among other provisions, it mandates a multinational operation to oversee a ceasefire in Libya and demands an immediate end to the supply of arms to both parties in the conflict.

The resolution also demands a commitment to the cessation of hostilities by all parties without preconditions, in line with terms agreed by their representatives at the Berlin conference in January.

However, observers have expressed doubt it will be respected, citing the failure of earlier resolutions including a UN arms embargo being flouted even by members of the council.

The Libyan war is between the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA) commanded by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, a loyalist of former strongman Muammar Gaddafi, and the UN-backed Government of National Accord.

It escalated in April following the launch of an offensive by the LNA to topple the weak government formed after the fall of Gaddafi in 2011.

The resolution came hours after LNA forces blocked UN flights from operating to and from Libya, thereby hampering humanitarian and peace efforts, and fuelling doubts about the UN’s ability to end the fighting.

However, it reaffirms strong support for the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) and recognises the key role of the African Union and the League of Arab States to end the fighting.


U.S trashed Iran foreign minister’s visa to attend UN meeting

Iran’s foreign minister said on Tuesday he has been informed by UN chief Antonio Guterres that Washington has denied him a visa for a trip to UN headquarters in New York.

“What we know is that the US State Secretary (Mike Pompeo), in a call to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, said: ‘We did not have time to issue a visa for Mohammad Javad Zarif and we will not issue a visa’,” Zarif said.

“The Secretary-General responded by saying that it is Iran’s right to take part in this session,” Iran’s top diplomat said, quoted by semi-official news agency ISNA.

So far there has been no official confirmation from Washington that it has rejected Zarif’s visa application.

Zarif was speaking to reporters in Tehran at a gathering to promote an Iranian peace plan for the Gulf.

His remarks came as Iran held funeral processions on Tuesday for one of its top military commanders killed in a US drone strike in Iraq.

Qasem Soleimani’s assassination has sparked a war of words between the arch-foes, with Iran vowing “severe revenge” and US President Donald Trump threatening to hit back hard for any retaliation.

Trump warned on Saturday that Washington had lined up 52 targets if Tehran attacked US personnel or assets.

On Tuesday, Zarif said the US visa decision was “a sign of the bankruptcy of the US government and Trump’s regime”, according to ISNA.

The Iranian foreign minister said he had been planning to go UN headquarters on Thursday for an open debate on “Upholding the Charter of the United Nations”.

But he added that he had also intended to “raise America’s crimes” during his visit to New York.

It is not the first time that Iranian officials have encountered problems when travelling to New York for events at UN headquarters.

In December, the United Nations General Assembly called on the United States to lift restrictions on Iranian diplomats.

Since mid-2019, Iranian diplomats and ministers have been under strict movement restrictions when they are in the United States.

Iran’s Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif

They are limited largely to the area around UN headquarters, the Iranian diplomatic mission and the ambassador’s residence.

In September, while taking part in the annual General Assembly, Zarif complained he was unable to visit the country’s UN ambassador in a US hospital.


Aisha Buhari urges UN DSG, Amina Mohammed to do more

...sends her message

The wife of the President of Nigeria, Aisha Buhari, on Sunday, congratulated the UN Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed, on the World Leader Prize at the inaugural Global Citizen award ceremony held in London.

Buhari on her tweeter handle, described Mohammed as an epitome of Nigerian woman whose advocacy to women development knows no boundary.

“I urge you to do more in the area of protection of women and children against all forms of abuse and violence.

Nigeria’s First, Aisha Buhari

“I therefore wish to extend my heartfelt congratulations to Mrs. Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations as she wins the World Leader Prize at Global Citizen Award Ceremony in London.

” Mohammed is an epitome of the Nigerian woman and is recognized for her advocacy on issues of development especially as they relate to women, children and the underprivileged” she tweeted.


UN Sec Gen., Antonio Guterres cried insecurities, uncertainty.

…Wishes world peace and happiness in New Year message

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has lamented that the world is entering the year 2020 with uncertainty and insecurity.

Guterres, in his New Year message issued in New York however said that in spite of the ugly happenings across the world, there was hope.

The United Nations scribe added that young people were at the heart of his New Year message, referring to the youths as the greatest source of hope for the world.

“From here at the United Nations, I join you in welcoming the New Year.

His statement reads in part:

“We enter 2020 with uncertainty and insecurity all around.

“Persistent inequality and rising hatred.

“A warring world and a warming planet.

“Climate change is not only a long-term problem, but a clear and present danger.

“We cannot afford to be the generation that fiddled while the planet burned.

“But there is also hope.”

In spite of the sad happenings he enumerated, Guterres maintained that his New Year message was to the greatest source of the hope, the youths.

“This year, my New Year’s message is to the greatest source of that hope: the world’s young people.

“From climate action to gender equality to social justice and human rights, your generation is on the frontlines and in the headlines.

“I am inspired by your passion and determination.

“You are rightly demanding a role in shaping the future.

“I am with you,” Guterres assured.

While saying that the United Nations stood with the youths and belonged to the youths, Guterres further said in the year 2020, which marks the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, the world body would be launching a Decade of Action for the Sustainable Development Goals, the United Nations’ blueprint for a fair globalisation.

UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres

“This year, the world needs young people to keep speaking out. Keep thinking big. Keep pushing boundaries. And keep up the pressure.

“I wish you peace and happiness in 2020,” Guterres concluded.


United Nations condemn killing of aid workers in Borno.

Eve Sabbagh, the Head of Public Information, UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), stated this in a statement on Saturday in Maiduguri.

Kallon said the UN agency was sad by the killing of the aid workers by their captors on Dec. 13.

He described the action as “tragic” and called for immediate release of aid workers still under captivity.

“I am deeply saddened and outraged by the news of the tragic killing of four aid workers who were held captive by armed groups for almost five months.

“My thoughts go to their families, friends and colleagues who are enduring unspeakable pain and hardship,” Kallon said.

He explained that the four men were among the six aid workers abducted on July 26; when armed group attacked their convoy in Damasak of Mobbar Local Government Area.

“They were working on a health project implemented by the Action Against Hunger, an International Non Governmental Organization (INGO).

“One of the drivers was killed during the attack and another was reportedly executed on September 24.

“I plead for the immediate release of Grace Taku, the only woman who was in the ACF team, and whose whereabouts remain unknown.

“I also call for the immediate release of Alice Loksha, a nurse and a mother, who was abducted during an attack in Rann in March 2018,” he said.

Kallon described the action as another sad day for the people of Nigeria and the humanitarian community.

He noted that the aid workers devoted their lives to helping the most vulnerable communities in Borno, in spite of the risks.

According to him, the UN and partners were working to provide vital assistance to over seven million people in the crisis-affected states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe.

The coordinator, however, decried that humanitarian workers have increasingly become the target of violent attacks.

He revealed that seven aid workers were killed this year while 26 others lost their lives in the conflict since 2011.

Kallon added that: “Violence against humanitarian actors jeopardizes access to much needed assistance for people affected by the armed conflict.

“I renew the call for all armed actors to respect the principles of humanity, neutrality, independence and impartiality which guide humanitarian assistance, and to ensure the protection of aid workers”.


IPOB set to take Nigeria Army to UN Amnesty International.

…says they are being targeted.

… operation positive identification (OPI)

The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has concluded plans to report the Nigeria Army to the United Nations (UN) Amnesty International and other world bodies over its proposed Operation Positive Identification (OPI).

According to the media and publicity secretary of the group, Emma Powerful who disclosed this to our correspondent in Owerri, IPOB vowed to resist the plan of the military, insisting that the OPI is targeted at its members and Igbo in the country.

Powerful alleged that the effort is only geared to punishing the people of South East, adding that the operation is meant to deceive those in other zones when it’s actual culprits is the Igbo.

He regretted that the Nigeria Army has abandoned its duties of protecting their lives to “inflicting punishment on them.”

He said: “The government of Nigeria and her security operatives particularly the Nigeria military have abandoned their duties of protecting Nigeria citizens and adopted a strategy to kill the Biafrans.

“This last strategy will never work in Biafraland because IPOB is not involved in whatever way Nigeria government puts forward to deceive Nigerians.

“We are not in support of this latest desperate attempt to kill anybody suspected to be Biafran; Nigeria government in their ways of suffering their citizens never issued national ID card to everyone in the country, why must they decide to come up with this nonsense?

“We condemn Nigeria military and their move to cage Nigerians and we are aware that they will target Biafraland for this operation-show-your-ID card; so we must notify the civilized world about this latest plan to kill our people. We would take the matter to the United Nations, Amnesty International and other world bodies to stop this madness,” Powerful assured.

He, however, warned its members and the people of South East to restrict their movements when the operation kicks off.

“We want to warn not only the IPOB family but to all Biafrans here to be very much careful during these days because they are the target of the Fulani terrorists soldiers and police in Nigeria; what they are doing cannot change our resolve to restore Biafra,” Powerful restated.


Nigeria’s First Aisha Buhari Welcomes UNGA President, Tijjani Muhammad..

The First Lady, Dr. Mrs. Aisha Muhammadu Buhari received in audience the President of the General Assembly of the United Nations, Prof. Tijjani Muhammad Bande at the Presidential Villa on Monday 25th November, 2019.

Speaking during the visit, Mrs. Buhari congratulated Prof. Bande on the victory, which she said is a sign of the respect accorded Nigeria by the international community. She hailed his commitment towards improving the health and well-being of women, children and other vulnerable members of the society, saying this commitment will contribute in no small way to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in Nigeria.

She recalled the excitement with which Professor Bande’s appointment was received in Nigeria and expressed the hope that his tenure as President of the UN General Assembly will have greater impact on the empowerment and autonomy of women, their socio-political economy and health status.

She expressed optimism that Future Assured programme will partner with his office to ensure better health outcomes for women and children.

Earlier, Professor Tijjani Mohammed Bande expressed his gratitude to the First Lady for sending a delegation during his inauguration as President of the 74th UN General Assembly and commended the First Lady’s work on improving the well-being of Women and Children as it directly relate to the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

He expressed the readiness of his office to partner with the First Lady in areas of poverty alleviation, girl child education, inclusion, Women & Children Empowerment, and Gender Equality among others.

The meeting was attended by wife of the Vice President, HE, Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Women Affairs & Administration, Dr. Hajo Sani, while the UN General Assembly President was accompanied by Ag. Permanent Representative of Nigeria to the UN, Ambassador Samson Itegboje and the UN Chef de’ Cabinet, Ms. Marie Skaare.


DR Congo Anti UN Protest – Four recorded casualties, dead..

At least four demonstrators were killed on Monday in violence during protests in eastern DR Congo against UN peacekeepers, the military investigators told AFP.

“There were four deaths during the day,” military prosecutor Kumbu Ngoma said. “Ten civilians were wounded and three Congolese military were also hurt.”

Crowds defied warning shots fired by Congolese forces and stormed a UN camp, which had apparently been evacuated, in an angry protest over killings by an armed militia in the eastern town of Beni.