COVID-19 Travel Restrictions, Middle East & other topics - Daily Press Briefing
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Noon briefing by Stephane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the United Nations Secretary-General.


In a statement, the Secretary-General commended the Government and scientists and health community of South Africa for acting early to identify the emergence of a new COVID-19 variant.  

The Secretary-General spoke this morning at the General Assembly meeting on the establishment of a Middle East zone free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction. He reiterated his call upon all parties in the region to exercise restraint and avoid escalation.

The Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed, is in London today to give the 2021 Annual Lecture at the Royal African Society on just transitions and investing in sustainable recovery.

The Security Council received briefings this morning on Lebanon on resolution 1701.

Our colleagues at the UN Peacekeeping Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo, report to us that presumed CODECO fighters have continued to carry attacks against the displaced population in Ituri province, including an attack where 21 people have reportedly been killed.

Over the weekend we issued a joint press release on behalf of ourselves, the African Union, the Commission of the Economic Community of Central African States, and the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region as well as the European Union.

Today is the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

The International Organization for Migration celebrated its 70th anniversary and for the occasion the Secretary-General sent a video message in which he congratulated IOM for helping millions of migrants and displaced people and supporting countries to create the conditions for safe, orderly, and regular migration, over the past seven decades.

A quick COVID update from Malaysia: our UN team there, led by Resident Coordinator Karima El Korri, continues to support authorities tackle the multiple impacts of the pandemic.

In a statement we issued the Secretary-General said that he welcomes the 26 November trilateral meeting between the Prime Minister of Armenia, the President of Azerbaijan, and the President of the Russian Federation, and he took note of their joint statement and notes with appreciation the role of the Russian Federation in facilitating continuing contacts and dialogue between Armenia and Azerbaijan.

We also issued a statement on Friday on the Solomon Islands, the Secretary-General called for an end to the violence and the protection of hard-won peacebuilding gains.

And also over the weekend the Secretary-General strongly condemned last week’s deadly terrorist attack on a UN-affiliated convoy in front of the Mucassar School in Mogadishu. The attack resulted in many casualties.