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Without firm action on gender equality, women’s empowerment, world may miss development targets

INTERNATIONAL, 14 February 2018 - Without speedy progress on gender equality and real action to end pervasive discrimination against women and girls, the global community will not be able to keep the promise to ‘leave no one behind’ on the road to ending poverty, protecting the planet and advancing prosperity by 2030, according to a new United Nations report launched on Wednesday.

“This is an urgent signal for action, and the report recommends the directions to follow,” Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, the Executive Director of UN Women, said on the launch of the new report, Turning promises into actionGender Equality in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Speaking to reporters at UN Headquarters in New York, she said: “As a world, we committed through the SDGs [Sustainable Development Goals] to leave no one behind,” but the report reveals many areas where progress remains slow to achieve the Goals by 2030.

Even where progress is made, it may not reach the women and girls who need it most and the ones that are being left furthest behind,” explained Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka.

Turning promises into action makes in-depth case studies in the Colombia, Nigeria, Pakistan, South Africa, United States and Uruguay, looking at what is necessary to achieve the 2030 Agenda.

Focusing on unpaid care work and ending violence against women, the comprehensive report examines all 17 SDGs and how deeply intertwined the different dimensions of well-being and deprivation are in impacting the lives of women and girls.

UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women, briefs on the report entitled Gender Equality in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

As one example, it points out that a girl born into poverty and forced into early marriage is more likely to drop out of school, give birth at an early age, suffer childbirth complications and experience violence – a scenario that encompasses all the SDGs.

Moreover, new data in 89 countries reveals that there are 4.4 million more women than men living on less than $1.90 a day – much of which is explained by the disproportionate burden of unpaid care work women face, especially during their reproductive years.

Looking beyond national averages, glaring gaps are uncovered between women and girls who, even within the same country, are living in worlds apart because of income status, race, ethnicity or location.

While the report addresses how to tackle existing structural inequalities and what is needed to move from promises to action, progress remains slow.

“It’s a problem in all countries, developed, developing, north, south, east west,” Shahrashoub Razavi, UN Women’s Chief of Research and Data, told UN News.

“We have a long way to go to achieve gender equality universally,” she added, calling it “a problem that stymies the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.”

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Syria: Civilians killed on ‘horrific scale’ as conflict begins spilling across borders

INTERNATIONAL, 14 February 2018 - The conflict in Syria is now spilling over the country’s borders amid increased military intervention from multiple sources, a senior United Nations mediator said on Wednesday, warning that civilians are being killed on a horrific scale and the crisis is at one of the most “dangerous and worrying moments” in over four years.

“The last several weeks have seen a new cross‑border conflict in Afrin with yet no clear end in sight,” Staffan de Mistura, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Syria, told the Security Council, referring to the northern Syria enclave near the Turkish border, which has become a major front in the ongoing Syria crisis.

He also noted that there have been reports of exchanges of fire between Turkish and Syrian Government forces, and also between the United States-led coalition and pro‑Syrian Government forces, with major loss of life.

After having served in his current position for more than four years, “this is as violent and worrying and dangerous a moment as any that I have seen in my time as Special Envoy,” Mr. de Mistura said.

He said the country has seen a string of dangerous and worrying escalations, including inside the de-escalation zones, or enclaves where hostilities are supposed to be eased, established by the three guarantors of talks in Astana – Russia, Iran and Turkey – as well as outside those areas.  

There has been a gradual return to back-and-forth competition over territory in Idlib and Hama, as well as heavy and sustained airstrikes across the north-west and in besieged Eastern Ghouta. 

Civilians have been killed on a horrific scale, with reports suggesting more than 1,000 people killed in the first week of February alone. Strikes continue to hit hospitals, schools and markets, and there are several allegations of chlorine attacks.

At least 320,000 people have been displaced due to fighting in Idlib in just two months, while there were reports of heavy mortar shelling falling across residential Damascus, wounding and killing civilians and damaging infrastructure, he said. 

“There has not been a single United Nations humanitarian convoy to reach any besieged area since the end of November 2017,” he underscored.

“We urgently need genuine de-escalation [of the violence] to protect civilians, evacuate the sick and wounded and allow humanitarian aid to reach nearly three million people in hard‑to-reach areas,” he added. 

What is taking place in Syria not only imperils the de-escalation arrangements and regional stability, it also undermines efforts for a political solution, he said, stressing that the UN-facilitated Geneva process is the only sustainable path towards that solution.

Mr. de Mistura told the Council that since the Vienna and Sochi meetings, held in late January, he has been consulting on the establishment of a constitutional committee for Syria. His team is in touch with a wide array of Syrians and he also continues to pursue the convening of Syria talks dealing with all four baskets of issues concerning Syria.

A secure, calm and neutral environment must be created if any constitutional progress is to unfold, he said. He intends to strike “while the iron is hot” and move the Geneva process of intra-Syrian talks ahead, but the Syrian people need the Council’s support now more than ever, he stressed.

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At donor conference, UN chief launches two-year plan to fast-track Iraq reconstruction

INTERNATIONAL, 14 February 2018 - United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on Wednesday launched a reconstruction programme for Iraq, urging the global community to support Iraqis as they embark on the journey to rebuild their country and make sure that it is committed to unity and inclusivity.

“Reconstruction and development programmes must go hand-in-hand with a strategy to prevent the recurrence of violent extremism and terrorism in Iraq,” Mr. Guterres said at an international donor conference in Kuwait.

“This must include full respect for human rights, including political, civil, economic, social and cultural rights,” he added.

The two-year Recovery and Resilience Programme, according to UN country team in Iraq, is designed to fast-track the social dimensions of reconstruction and help ensure that people see tangible improvements in their daily lives at the start of the reconstruction process, rather than waiting years to benefit from large-scale infrastructure projects and structural reforms.

The UN is seeking $482 million for the first year of the programme and an additional $568 million to help stabilize high-risk areas.

In December last year, Iraqi forces declared final victory over the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh), three years after the terrorist group captured large parts of the country’s territory.

During that time, tens of thousands of Iraqis lost their lives, hundreds of thousands lost their homes and livelihoods, and many women and girls were targeted for sexual violence on a staggering scale.

According to estimates, nearly six million Iraqis were forced to flee their homes.

“[However,] throughout the conflict, the Iraqi people never wavered from their legendary tradition of hospitality, as families and communities across the country opened their homes to those fleeing death and chaos,” said Mr. Guterres, praising their spirit.

Highlighting the path ahead, the UN chief urged priority be accorded to those who still remain displaced from their homes, programmes aimed at empowering women and girls and said that the country’s reconciliation process must also include accountability for the crimes that have been committed.

Mr. Guterres said that the world “owes a debt” to the Iraqi people for their struggle against ISIL and that it is time for the global community to demonstrate its lasting gratitude and solidarity with the people of the country.

The reconstruction programme focuses on urgent priorities – helping people who have suffered the most, revitalizing the areas at the highest risk of return to violence, and advancing broad political participation and inclusive social harmony.

“Reconstruction is not just about rebuilding infrastructure – it’s about improving people’s lives,” said UN Humanitarian and Resident Coordinator for Iraq, Lise Grande.

The programme includes nine components. Three will be implemented in high priority communities where violent extremism may possibly emerge unless steps are taken to restore community trust, build confidence in the Government and open economic opportunities.

The other components are national in scope. These focus on decentralizing basic services, promoting sustainable returns, providing support to survivors, accelerating community reconciliation and expanding political and social participation.

“Together with community and tribal reconciliation, national political settlement and accord, based on the principle of citizenship with equal rights, obligations, justice and opportunities for all, is critically important for a future stable, united and prosperous Iraq,” said the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General (SRSG) for Iraq, Ján Kubiš.

Separately, partners are seeking $569 million to provide life-saving assistance to 3.4 million highly vulnerable people across Iraq through the 2018 Humanitarian Response Plan.

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Yemen: UN aid chief welcomes $1 billion funding pledge as humanitarian crisis deepens

INTERNATIONAL, 13 February 2018 - Amidst ongoing conflict, the collapse of basic services and economic decline in Yemen, the United Nations aid chief welcomed a substantial humanitarian pledge from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

“I reiterate the Secretary-General’s statement welcoming the generous $1 billion pledge by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to support humanitarian action in Yemen, as well as their commitment to raise an additional $500 million from other donors in the region,” UN Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock said Tuesday.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE agreed with the UN that $930 million would be transferred by 31 March, in support of the 2018 Yemen Humanitarian Response Plan (YHRP) – with the clear stipulation that the funds be used on humanitarian need alone.

The two countries would also provide an additional $70 million to support port rehabilitation and infrastructure in the country as part of the Yemen Comprehensive Humanitarian Operations Plan issued by the Saudi-led coalition in January 2018.

The funds represent almost one-third of the YHRP $2.96 billion requirement.

“Once converted,” Mr. Lowcock said, “the pledge will reduce hunger, contain disease, maintain essential health, water and education services and relieve the suffering of millions of Yemenis across the country.”

“If fully funded,” he continued “the UN and its partners will provide, among other assistance, emergency food to more than 8.5 million Yemenis, nutritional services to 5.6 million children, pregnant women and mothers, and safe water to 5.4 million people.

The UN and its partners will also rehabilitate more than 1,400 schools and 650 health facilities destroyed by the ongoing conflict.

Mr. Lowcock thanked both countries for moving forward with the “generous and much needed infusion of funds.”

“I hope this generosity will encourage more donors to contribute to the YHRP, including ahead of the international pledging conference on Yemen to be held in Geneva on 3 April,” he added.

A record 22.2 million people are now in need of humanitarian assistance – 3.4 million more than last year.

“I call on all parties to the conflict to respect international humanitarian law by protecting civilians and civilian infrastructure and facilitating rapid, safe and unfettered humanitarian access to Yemen and within the country,” stressed Mr. Lowcock, who is also the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs.

While brave humanitarians are committed to saving lives, only a political solution and an end to the conflict will stop the suffering of the Yemeni people.

“We renew our call on all parties to cease hostilities and to engage meaningfully with the United Nations to achieve a lasting political settlement,” concluded Mr. Lowcock.

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Fleeing DR Congo violence, thousands take perilous lake journey to Uganda – UN

INTERNATIONAL, 13 February 2018 - Over 22,000 desperate Congolese refugees crossed Lake Albert to Uganda last week, with four drowning when their boat capsized on the perilous journey from the conflict-hit eastern regions of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

More than 22,000 desperate Congolese refugees crossed Lake Albert to Uganda last week, with four drowning when their boat capsized, the United Nations reported Tuesday, warning that even more lives could be lost on often-perilous lake routes from the conflict-hit eastern regions of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

“The refugees either use small canoes or overcrowded and rickety fishing boats, often carrying more than 250 people and taking up to ten hours to cross,” Babar Baloch, spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) told reporters in Geneva, Switzerland.

“Overloaded with luggage and fishing nets, the small canoe, which was carrying the four refugees who drowned on 11 February, had paddled for nearly two days when it was hit by high waves, causing the passengers to fall overboard,” he added.

Since the beginning of the year, some 34,000 Congolese have arrived in Uganda.  

UNHCR staff have reported several other incidents of boats going adrift due to engine failure or insufficient fuel, prompting rescue operations by the Ugandan authorities.

On 7 February, UNHCR partners recorded two more deaths at the DRC shores of Lake Albert – which spans the border into Uganda – where thousands of people are waiting to cross, as some wrangled to get onto the boats.

With attacks on villages in the DRC province of Ituri continuing over the weekend, UNHCR calls for increased humanitarian access to the area, to cover the population’s enormous protection and assistance needs.

Refugees crossing to Uganda talk of growing attacks against civilian populations, as well as killings and destruction of private property. UNHCR staff also received many reports of civilians being hacked to death and killed with arrows.

UNHCR works with the Ugandan authorities for the registration and the relocation of the new arrivals to settlements further inland. However, more support is needed to face the demanding situation.

Among the critical priorities is the preparation of new settlement areas, together with psycho-social interventions to help refugees overcome their trauma. 

Meanwhile, crossings through Lake Tanganyika towards Burundi and Tanzania declined significantly last week, currently reaching some 8,000 and 1,200 respectively. Army advances against the armed groups inside DRC, as well as a dwindling supply of readily available fishing boats and canoes, may have contributed to the drop in new arrivals.

However, UNHCR is afraid that flows could soon pick up again, given the unpredictable and volatile nature of the conflict.

Over the past year, some 120,000 Congolese fled to neighboring countries, joining the 510,000 refugees that were already in exile. With Congolese refugee flows to neighboring countries expected to further increase in 2018, UNHCR is urging donors to step up their support. Of the $368.7 million that UNHCR has requested for the DRC refugee situation, only one per cent has been funded so far.

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UN agency sets ambitious target to reduce hunger and poverty for millions worldwide

INTERNATIONAL, 13 February 2018 - Amid a global rise in hunger and poverty on back of the impacts of climate change and conflict, the United Nations rural development agency today announced an ambitious target to generate resources to fund loans and grants to enable millions in developing countries strengthen their food security and livelihoods.

The total, $3.5 billion, announced Tuesday by the 176 member States of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) will enable the UN agency expand its projects and programmes to benefit 47 million smallholder farmers with improved technology, finance and knowledge; improve market access for 46 million; and build resilience to climate change impact of another 24 million.

“To achieve these goals, we will intensify our work on climate, nutrition and gender –  key focus areas which will be mainstreamed across our portfolio,” said IFAD President Gilbert F. Houngbo.

“We will also sharpen our focus on youth employment in order to meet one of the most pressing challenges faced by the world today.”

The renewed commitment from IFAD member States could not come at a more critical moment.

Last September, newly released figures showed that hunger increased for the first time in 10 years affecting 815 million people in 2016, up 38 million from 2015 because of climate change and protracted crises.

Furthermore, as nearly 75 per cent of the world’s poorest and hungry people live in rural areas, almost 90 per cent the contributions will go to lower-income and lower-middle income countries. An estimated 25 to 30 per cent will be invested in fragile situations.

The commitment is also timely given the global push to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, especially Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 1 and 2 on on ending poverty in all its forms, and ending hunger and achieving food security, respectively.

“We believe that IFAD has a unique role to play, not only as an investor but as a trusted broker, an assembler of development finance, and a proven innovator sharing its knowledge and expertise,” said Mr. Houngbo.

A specialized agency of the UN, IFAD is devoted exclusively to investing in rural areas and harnessing the potential of smallholder farmers and other rural people to contribute to sustainable development.

Since its founding in 1977, IFAD has received approximately $8.5 billion in member State contributions, which have financed investments of $19.7 billion and mobilized a further $27.1 billion from domestic and international partners. From 2010-2015, it is estimated that IFAD-supported projects lifted 24 million people out of poverty.

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Causes of Rohingya refugee crisis originate in Myanmar; solution must be found there, Security Council told

INTERNATIONAL, 13 February 2018 - Nearly six months after an outbreak of violence drove almost 700,000 minority Rohingyas from Myanmar to seek safety in Bangladesh, senior United Nations officials on Tuesday said it is time to address the root causes – including decades of repression inside Myanmar – so those who fled feel safe enough to return to their homeland.

“We are now in a race against time as a major new emergency looms,” United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi told the Security Council via videolink from Geneva, Switzerland.  

He said that the Kutupalong area in Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar is now the largest refugee settlement in the world, and with the monsoon season to start in March, 107,000 refugees are estimated to be living in areas prone to flooding or landslides.

“The [Bangladeshi] Government is steering a massive emergency preparedness effort, but international support must be stepped up to avert a catastrophe,” he said, stressing that “as we have repeatedly said, resolving this crisis means finding solutions inside Myanmar.”

He said that conditions are not yet conducive to the voluntary repatriation of Rohingya refugees to Myanmar.

The refugee crisis erupted in late August when Myanmar armed forces launched a security operation in the north of Rakhine State, driving thousands of children, women and men to flee over the border to Bangladesh in search of safety

“The causes of their flight have not been addressed, and we have yet to see substantive progress on addressing the exclusion and denial of rights that has deepened over the last decades, rooted in their lack of citizenship,” Mr. Grandi said.

“It is time to bring an end to this repeated, devastating cycle of violence, displacement and statelessness to invest in tangible, substantial measures that will start to overcome the profound exclusion that the Rohingya community have endured for far too long,” he added.

Also addressing the Council was UN Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Miroslav Jenca, who said that while there has been certain progress on the three priorities laid out by the Secretary-General, not all have been implemented thus far.

Turning first to the need to end violence and improve the security situation, he said that although large-scale acts of violence have subsided, concerns about threats and intimidation against the remaining Rohingya population from Bamar and Rakhine communities, as well as from militia and security forces in Rakhine state, persist. 

Second, the UN does not have sufficient access to make a meaningful assessment of the humanitarian or human rights situation in Rakhine.

As for the third point, which is voluntary, safe, dignified and sustainable return of refugees and internally displaced people to their places of origin or choice, Mr. Jenca said the Government has taken some high-level steps to advance this process, including the convening of an Advisory Board, whose recommendations include the inclusion of the UN at an early stage, soonest full humanitarian access, wider media access, and the formation of an independent fact-finding commission. 

Mr. Jenca called on the authorities in Myanmar to release the arrested two Reuters journalists and respect the right to freedom of expression and information.

Reuters has now published the story these journalists were working on, a deeply disturbing account of the execution of 10 Rohingya men in Inn Din village (Maungdaw) in northern Rakhine state,he said, while the Associated Press (AP) has also published a report of five mass graves in Gudar Pyin village (Buthidaung). 

“These and other shocking reports of grave abuses demand our attention and action, for the sake of lasting peace and justice,” he said. 

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Both radio and sports can help people achieve their potential, says UN on World Radio Day

INTERNATIONAL, 13 February 2018 - In an era of dramatic advances in communications, radio retains its power to entertain, educate, inform and inspire, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said, marking World Radio Day with a call to celebrate both radio and sports as ways of helping people achieve their potential.

Radio is a powerful, low-cost communication tool that reaches the widest global audience while also connecting people to grassroots sports within communities. “It can unite and empower communities and give voice to the marginalized,” the Secretary-General said.

The UN chief pointed out that radio is specifically suited to reach remote communities and vulnerable people, including the illiterate, disabled and poor. It also offers a platform to participate in the public debate – irrespective of people’s educational level – and has a strong and specific role in emergency communication and disaster relief.

“This year,” Mr. Guterres continued, “with the Winter Olympics now under way, we also recognize the many ways in which sports broadcasting brings people together around excitement and achievement.”

“On World Radio Day, let us celebrate both radio and sports as ways of helping people achieve their full potential,” he concluded.

In looking forward to a year of momentous sporting events that can unite the hearts and minds of people everywhere, the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) said the theme of the 2018 edition of the Day – Radio and Sports – was an opportunity for radio stations worldwide to showcase the beauty of sports in all of its diversity.

In her message, UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay called radio “a powerful means to transmit the enthusiasm of sport events.”

“It is also a means to convey the values of fair play, teamwork and equality in sport,” she continued, emphasizing that radio can help combat racist and xenophobic stereotypes that are expressed both on and off the field.

Radio also allows a broad range of traditional sports to be covered, far beyond the elite teams, providing an opportunity to nurture diversity, as a force for dialogue and tolerance.

“The fight for gender equality is central to this effort,” stressed Ms. Azoulay.

According to the UNESCO-supported Global Media Monitoring Project report, a mere four per-cent of sports media content is dedicated to women’s sport and only 12 per cent of sports news is presented by women.

“UNESCO is working to improve the coverage of women’s sports, to combat gender discrimination on the airwaves and to promote equal opportunities in sports media,” she stated, adding “The task is immense.”

On World Radio Day, Ms. Azoulay urged everyone to mobilize in making radio an increasingly independent and pluralistic media.

“Let us join forces to celebrate the potential of sports radio in furthering development and peace,” she said.

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Maldives: UN rights experts denounce detention of judges as ‘direct attack’ on Supreme Court

INTERNATIONAL, 12 February 2018 - Denouncing the detention of two Supreme Court judges in the Maldives, United Nations human rights experts warned that the independence of the judiciary is under “serious threat” in the country, as is the principle of separation of powers between the State and the courts.

“It is clear that the rule of law in the Maldives is now under siege,” said the experts in a news release issued Monday by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

“We call on the Government to refrain from any threats or interference that may hamper the court’s independence as the supreme guardian of the country’s constitution and legislation,” they added.

In the release, José Antonio Guevara Bermúdez, the current Chair-Rapporteur of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention; and Diego García-Sayán, the UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and magistrates, also stressed that judicial independence, enshrined in the national constitution and in international human rights treaties, had to be guaranteed by the State.

Mr. García-Sayán also raised concern over the timing of the arrests, five days after the Supreme Court had ordered the release and retrial of nine opposition leaders, including former President Mohamed Nasheed.

Following the arrest of Chief Justice H.E. Abdulla Saeed and Ali Hameed Mohamed – shortly after the Government declared a state of emergency – the three remaining Supreme Court judges overturned the order to free the nine leaders.

It is clear that the rule of law in the Maldives is now under siege — UN rights experts

“[This] is at best suspicious,” said Mr. García-Sayán, adding that the acts constitutes “an intolerable act of intimidation” against the highest judicial authority in the country.

In the same vein, Mr. Bermúdez underscored that Judges should be able to decide all matters before them impartially, on the basis of facts, and in accordance with the law free of any intimidation.

“[However,] this is not possible when their very liberty and security is threatened,” he stressed.

According to the news release, the UN experts have been in contact with the Government of Maldives regarding their concerns.

UN Special Rapporteurs and independent experts are appointed by the Geneva-based Human Rights Council – the highest UN intergovernmental body on all matters related to human rights – to examine and report back on a specific human rights theme or a country situation.

The positions are honorary and the experts are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work.

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Focus on future, prioritize reconciliation for the region, UN envoy urges Western Balkans

INTERNATIONAL, 12 February 2018 - Concluding a twelve-day visit to Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, the United Nations Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide called for concerted and sustained efforts to prioritize reconciliation and prevention.

The renewed focus of the Western Balkan States to achieve European Union membership, provides a new opportunity for prioritizing the reconciliation agenda, Special Adviser Adama Dieng said on Monday. 

Mr. Dieng met with high-level government officials; religious leaders; civil society organizations; and members of the diplomatic community – along with representatives of the UN Country Teams in the region and the UN Office in Belgrade – exploring both reconciliation challenges along with opportunities to overcome them.

Mr. Dieng was concerned over a number of divisive factors that, without serious and concerted efforts, could make matters worse, including political polarization across identity lines and politicization of past events, such as glorifying war criminals and contesting court decisions.

Special Adviser Dieng called on political leaders to take active steps to overcome divisions and maximize common ground, encouraging them to focus on the future and prioritize reconciliation as a fundamental regional policy objective.

In Bosnia and Herzegovina, he placed a special focus on the October general elections, noting the increase in political tensions when he met government officials at State and entity levels in Sarajevo and in Banja Luka. He also met members of the Speakers Collegium of both parliamentary chambers. Mr. Dieng paid tribute to the victims of past atrocity crimes with visits to memorial sites in Srebrenica and in Donja Gradina and visited the Partisan Memorial Cemetery in Mostar.

He appealed for recognition of the suffering of all victims irrespective of their ethnic or religious origin, including through joint participation by political leaders in memorialization events.

He also underlined the important role of religious leaders and actors in promoting reconciliation, as well as the importance of empowering the youth with sustained efforts to promote inclusive education.

Additionally, the Special Adviser encouraged further strengthening joint agendas in fields where cooperation already exists, including prosecuting war crimes and regionalizing the joint UN and Bosnia and Herzegovina Presidency Dialogue for the Future initiative.

He also pointed to the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, particularly Sustainable Development Goal 16, as a key instrument for prevention as it addresses drivers and root causes of instability and conflict.

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