This is the News in Brief from the United Nations.
UN-backed forum aims to transform global response to refugee crisis
Heads of state, business leaders, development organizations and civil society representatives are this week joining with the UN to transform the way the world responds to refugee situations.
The first-ever Global Refugee Forum opened on Monday in Geneva and comes as the world emerges from what the UN High Commissioner for Refugees has described as “a decade of displacement.”
Overall, more than 70 million people worldwide have been displaced by war, conflict and persecution. More than 25 million are refugees, meaning they have fled across international borders and cannot return home.
The three-day forum will examine how humanitarian and development responses to the refugee crisis can complement one another.
The goal is to generate new approaches and long-term commitments to support refugees and the communities which they now call home.
More than 100 companies and foundations attending the gathering are also expected to make pledges covering areas such as jobs, finance and other assistance.
The forum is co-hosted by the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, together with Switzerland, and is being co-led by Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Germany, Pakistan and Turkey.
Yemen: UN food agency reports ‘massive expansion’ in food aid in 2019
Although a “massive expansion” of food assistance in Yemen this year has helped alleviate the worst suffering, more than 11 million people there are still struggling to get enough to eat.
That’s according to the World Food Programme (WFP) which this year scaled up its operations in the war-torn country by 50 per cent.
WFP reported that it now reaches 12 million Yemenis each month, up from eight million at the beginning of the year.
Yemen’s economy has been devastated by nearly five years of conflict which has pushed the price of basic goods out of the reach of many citizens.
Laurent Bukera, WFP Country Director for Yemen, said while food assistance has saved lives, support must continue.
He said: “Yemen needs peace - a lasting peace that will allow the country to rebuild.”
Harness youth potential to end hunger: FAO chief
Ending global hunger will require a scale-up in initiatives focused on youth and which harness their full potential, a senior UN official has said.
Qu Dongyu, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), was speaking at the World Youth Forum in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, which ended on Sunday.
Mr. Qu was on a panel discussing food security in Africa where he highlighted challenges facing youth on the continent, and in the Middle East, such as rising hunger and malnutrition, lack of jobs, and the impact of climate change.
He urged young people not to be discouraged because although these obstacles exist, there are ways to address them.
The FAO chief stressed that “We need the energy and potential of young people to achieve rural transformation” and to realize the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) of ending hunger by 2030.
Some of the solutions he mentioned included making the most of innovation, digital technology, investments, and encouraging greater appreciation of sustainable and healthy food systems.
Dianne Penn, UN News.