Wednesday's Daily Brief: 'Ambition and action', key to UNGA, South Sudan, Cameroon peace process updates

In the reforestation site of Merea, Chad, children are planting acacia seedlings for the future In the past 50 years, Lake Chad basin shrank from 25,000 square kilometers to 2,000square kilometers.
UNDP Chad/Jean Damascene Hakuzim
In the reforestation site of Merea, Chad, children are planting acacia seedlings for the future In the past 50 years, Lake Chad basin shrank from 25,000 square kilometers to 2,000square kilometers.

Wednesday's Daily Brief: 'Ambition and action', key to UNGA, South Sudan, Cameroon peace process updates

Peace and Security

A recap of Wednesday's top stories: Guterres previews next week's summit agenda; UN and Red Cross appeal to eliminate urban warfare; South Sudan's one-year peace progress report; Cameroon renews call for 'durable peace'; Cities both helping and hurting, when it comes to climate change action. 

UN summits urge ‘ambition and action’ on climate change, SDGs: Guterres

A young girl waters seedlings in Merea, Lake Chad, an activity which has become a daily chore.

There are five key United Nations summits taking place next week to spur action on the climate crisis and other global concerns, which will showcase the UN as a “driver for meaningful, positive change”, according to the man at the helm of the Organization.

For UN Secretary-General António Guterres, there is no time to lose in the face of climate change, rising inequality, increasing hatred and intolerance; and what he described as an “alarming” number of peace and security challenges.

The four other summits will address universal health coverage, the Sustainable Development Goals, financing for development and support to Small Island Developing States.

Read more here. 

UN and Red Cross chiefs call for ban of explosive weapons in cities 

DO NOT USE, LOW RESOLUTION  A bomb exploded in the centre of Kabul on the corner of Passport Lane and the Indian Embassy. (2009)

UN chief António Guterres and head of the Red Cross, Peter Maurer, joined forces on Wednesday to call for an end to the use of explosive weapons in cities. 

Idlib in Syria and the Libyan capital Tripoli are today enduring “a hail of bombs and shells”, they said in a statement. 

The appeal to all parties to armed conflict warns that 50 million people are affected the world by lethal devices, including those that have a “wide impact area” in populated zones. 

An estimated nine in 10 casualties of urban warfare are civilians, they noted.

Get our full story here.

South Sudan’s peace process ‘precarious, but progress being made’

South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir (centre) and opposition leader Dr. Riek Machar met on 11 September 2019 in Juba.  This was their second face-to-face meeting.

One year on from the signing of a Revitalized Agreement to ease conflict in South Sudan, the country’s political leaders “have met some, but certainly not all”, of the expectations laid out, the top UN official for the country told the Security Council on Wednesday.

Briefing the Council in New York, Special Representative and head of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), David Shearer, explained developments and downfalls he’s witnessed since the official peace ceremony last year.

“The bottom line is this. While the situation for many South Sudanese citizens remains bleak, the last year of peace has kick-started a transformative process that is improving lives,” Mr. Shearer concluded.

Get our full coverage here.

Cities: a ‘cause of and solution to’ climate change

In Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, air pollution levels are high.

Cities around the world are the “main cause of climate change” but can also offer a part of the solution to reducing the harmful greenhouses gases that are causing global temperatures to rise according to UN-Habitat Executive Director Maimunah Mohd Sharif.

Ms. Sharif will be joining world leaders at United Nations headquarters in New York next week at the Climate Action Summit convened by the UN Secretary-General António Guterres.

Listen to an exclusive UN News interview  with Mr. Shearer here, from a few weeks ago:

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Cameroon stresses commitment to tackle Boko Haram

This 15 year-old Nigerian girl at the Minawao refugee camp in northern Cameroon had been abducted by Boko Haram in 2014 and spent four months in captivity. (file)

In the Human Rights Council, Cameroon has reaffirmed its determination to lead “tireless combat” against Boko Haram extremists. 

Addressing the 47-member body in Geneva, Ambassador Mbella Mbella Lejeune also noted that numerous positive steps had been taken for a “durable peace”, following clashes between English-speaking separatists and Government forces. 

After explaining that President Paul Biya’s decision to hold a “grand” national dialogue with all sectors of Cameroonian society aimed to resolve the conflict, the Ambassador noted that there would be no impunity for those responsible for attacks in the north-west and south-west of the country. 

 

Listen to or download our audio News in Brief for 9 September, on Soundcloud:

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