There have been repeated comments by various Russian officials accusing the United Nations Secretariat of having either cancelled or blocked a visit by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant. I want to clarify a few points. First, the IAEA is a specialized agency that acts in full independence in deciding how to implement its specific mandate. Second, the UN Secretariat has no authority to either block or cancel any IAEA activities.Third, in close contact with the IAEA, the UN Secretariat has assessed that it has in Ukraine the logistics and security capacity to be able to support any IAEA mission to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant from Kyiv, should both Ukrainian and Russian authorities agree.
Today, the Secretary-General is appointing Simon Stiell of Grenada as Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, otherwise known as UNFCCC. Friday afternoon, the Secretary-General appointed Amir Mahmoud Abdulla of Sudan as the UN Coordinator for the Black Sea Grain Initiative.
The work of the peacekeeping Mission in Mali, MINUSMA, to support peace and security is also continuing.
Hans Grundberg, the Special Envoy for Yemen, briefed the Security Council by videoconference on the recent two-month extension of the truce in that country.
Today, in a statement, the UN Under-Secretary-General and UN Women Executive Director, Sima Bahous, noted that in the year that has passed since the Taliban’s takeover in Afghanistan, we have seen daily and continuous deterioration in the situation of Afghan women and girls.
Also today, the UN Children’s Fund published an analysis showing that keeping girls out of secondary school costs Afghanistan 2.5 per cent of its annual Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Yesterday, we issued a statement in which the Secretary-General expressed his sadness at the tragic fire that occurred at the Coptic Abu Sifin church in Giza, Egypt, near Cairo, killing and injuring dozens of worshippers, including many children.
In Armenia, our team on the ground expresses their deepest condolences over the tragic explosion at a market in Yerevan that took place yesterday.
One of your former colleagues, Doğan Uluç passed away. Since 1970, he was Hürriyet’s correspondent here at UN headquarters. I think he retired in the early 2000s, having served more than 30 years as the eyes and ears of very important Turkish media here at the United Nations.