COP26, Libya, Yemen & other topics - Daily Press Briefing
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Noon briefing by Farhan Haq, Deputy Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.


At the Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, the Secretary-General today met with various negotiating groups, including the High Ambition Coalition, the Least Developed Countries group, the ministers of the G77 + China and the Alliance of Small Island Developing States.

The Secretary-General spoke by video message to the Paris conference on Libya that is underway right now, and he said that today’s conference has one overriding goal: to seize this moment for peace -- peace that the Libyan people have been denied for far too long.

This morning at the Security Council, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, the head of the Department of Peace Operations, briefed on the G5 Sahel Joint Force. He said the situation in the region has remained volatile and civilians continue to pay the highest price.

The Deputy Spokesman said the UN is aware of reports of the withdrawal of Government of Yemen forces from around areas south of Hudaydah city up to Al Tuhayta district, and indications that Houthi forces have now moved into much of the vacated areas.

On Myanmar, the High Commissioner for Human Rights said that today’s conviction and harsh sentencing of the journalist, Danny Fenster, by a military court following a closed-door, unfair trial is emblematic of the wider plight of journalists who have been facing constant repression since the military takeover on the 1st of February.

Today, in a statement, the UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore said that she is deeply concerned by reports that child marriage in Afghanistan is on the rise. She said that UNICEF has received credible reports of families offering daughters as young as 20 days old up for future marriage in return for a dowry.

Earlier today in Niger, the Head of the UN Office for West Africa and the Sahel, Mahamat Saleh Annadif, and the Prime Minister of Niger, Ouhoumoudou Mahamadou, launched an initiative to strengthen social cohesion and consolidate national dialogue in the country.

The acting Humanitarian Coordinator in South Sudan, Arafat Jamal, today warned of a climate emergency in the country, calling for increased investment in disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation to avoid annual heavy flooding.

The World Food Programme (WFP) Executive Director, David Beasley, has concluded a three-day visit to Syria, in which he met with vulnerable families receiving WFP food assistance in Aleppo.

The Secretary-General today appointed Unaisi Lutu Vuniwaqa of Fiji as Assistant Secretary-General for Safety and Security. Ms. Vuniwaqa succeeds Nóirín O’Sullivan of Ireland, to whom the Secretary-General is grateful for her contribution and dedication.

Today marks the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. In a message, the Secretary-General notes that UNESCO was born as a pillar of the United Nations system, in the wake of one of the darkest chapters in human history.

Sunday is World Diabetes Day and the theme this year is access to diabetes care.

Guests at the noon briefing today were Police Adviser and Director of the United Nations Police (UNPOL) unit, Luís Carrilho, Police Commissioners from the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO), Mody Berethe, and the United Nations Interim Security Force in Abyei (UNISFA), Violet Lusala. They briefed reporters on this week’s UN Police Week events.