Category Archives: Open Day/Exposition

UN Secretary-General-Message for International Day of Rural Women, 15 October 2016

banRural women make up nearly half the agricultural labour force around the world. They grow, process and prepare much of our food. They are the backbone of rural communities, and in many households they have the key responsibility for food security, education opportunities and healthcare.  But the effects of climate change and environmental degradation are forcing many rural women to migrate, increasing instability for their families and communities and creating an obstacle to development and growth.

Natural disasters, together with recurrent slow-onset crises like drought, affect rural women disproportionately, adding to the challenges they already face in accessing food, healthcare, education and information. Many rural women move in order to find more productive land and improve their lives and those of their families. But migration can increase their isolation and marginalization. Others are left behind when male family members leave to seek opportunities elsewhere. Both groups need the support of the international community, as an integral part of the debates around migration and development.

Simple changes in policy can benefit rural women and help them to cope with the effects of the changing climate. For example, regulating remittances and reducing transaction costs can empower rural women economically, so that they can build the resilience of their families and communities.  Training and access to information on climate-resilient agriculture and technology can make a critical difference. But too often, these are considered to be men’s issues and women are excluded from benefitting. As we consider how we can better respond to the movements of refugees and migrants, I call upon everyone to take the special needs and concerns of rural women into account.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development promises to leave no one behind. To deliver on that, we must help rural women to thrive, and to access the support and information they need, so that they can fulfil their potential without leaving their communities.  

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Les femmes rurales constituent près de la moitié de la main-d’œuvre agricole dans le monde. Elles cultivent, transforment et préparent une grande partie de ce que nous mangeons. Les communautés rurales ne pourraient survivre sans elles, et dans de nombreux ménages la sécurité alimentaire, les possibilités d’éducation et les soins de santé reposent en grande partie sur elles. Mais les effets du changement climatique et  la dégradation de l’environnement contraignent de nombreuses femmes rurales à migrer, d’où pour leurs familles et leurs communautés une instabilité croissante qui fait aussi obstacle au développement et à la croissance. Les catastrophes naturelles, sur fond de crises rampantes telles que les sécheresses,  pénalisent de manière disproportionnée les femmes rurales, qui rencontrent déjà des difficultés pour accéder à la nourriture, aux soins de santé, à l’éducation et à l’information.

De nombreuses femmes rurales migrent à la recherche de terres plus productives et d’une existence meilleure pour elles-mêmes et pour leur famille. Mais la migration peut accentuer leur isolement et leur marginalisation. D’autres se retrouvent seules quand les hommes de la famille partent ailleurs pour trouver du travail. Les unes et les autres ont besoin de l’appui de la communauté internationale, un élément à part entière des débats autour des migrations et du développement. Quelques changements simples dans les politiques peuvent être utiles aux femmes rurales et les aider à faire face aux effets du changement climatique. Ainsi, la réglementation des envois de fonds et la diminution des coûts de transaction peuvent être pour les femmes rurales des outils d’autonomisation économique qui leur permettront de renforcer la résilience de leurs familles et de leurs communautés. Des mesures telles que la formation et l’accès à l’information sur l’agriculture et les techniques à l’épreuve du climat peuvent faire toute la différence. Mais on considère trop souvent qu’elles ne concernent que les hommes, et les femmes n’en bénéficient pas.
Alors que nous réfléchissons à ce que nous pouvons faire pour mieux répondre aux mouvements de réfugiés et de migrants, j’appelle chacun a tenir compte des besoins et des problèmes particuliers des femmes rurales. Le Programme de développement durable à l’horizon 2030 promet de ne laisser personne au bord de la route. Pour que le pari soit gagné, nous devons aider les femmes rurales à prospérer et à avoir accès à l’aide et à l’information dont elles ont besoin pour réaliser leur potentiel sans quitter leurs communautés.

UN Secretary-General-Remarks at General Assembly Plenary Meeting on the Appointment of the Secretary-General of the United Nations

New York, 13 October 2016

Before turning to our agenda item, I would like to offer my deep condolences to the Royal family, Government and people of Thailand on the passing of H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

H.M. King Bhumibol was revered by the people of Thailand as a unifying national leader.  He was also highly respected internationally.

At this time of sorrow and loss, I hope that Thailand will continue to honour King Bhumibol’s legacy of commitment to universal values and respect for human rights.

Mr. President,
Your Excellency Mr. António Guterres, Secretary-General-designate of the United Nations,
Your Excellency Mr. Augusto Ernesto dos Santos Silva, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Portugal,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Above all, Mr. Secretary-General-designate, congratulations … félicitations … felicitaciones …   parabéns!  

I commend the Member States not only for their choice, but for the way in which they went about it.

The first-ever public hearings on the selection of a Secretary-General opened the process to the world.

Several highly qualified women and men were given a unique platform from which to share their vision and answer questions from the diplomatic community and civil society.  

These new steps established a new benchmark of openness and engagement.

Secretary-General-designate Guterres is well known to all of us in the hall.  But he is perhaps best known where it counts most: on the frontlines of armed conflict and humanitarian suffering.

For the past decade, the work of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and other humanitarian actors has been a lifeline for millions upon millions of people forced from their homes.  

They also delivered something else: compassion.

That same solidarity was at the heart of the High Commissioner’s effective advocacy around the globe.

Mr. Guterres also brings deep and solid political experience, including his two terms of service as Prime Minister of Portugal.  

His political instincts are those of the United Nations – cooperation for the common good, and shared responsibility for people and the planet.

He recognizes the crucial importance of women’s empowerment, from peace tables to the halls of this house.

As an active participant in the Senior Management Group and Chief Executives Board, he understands the inner workings of our Organization.

I have long valued his advice, and long admired his spirit of service.  He is a wonderful choice to steer this Organization as we build on the progress of the past decade while addressing the insecurity and uncertainties of today’s world.

Mr. Secretary-General-designate,

You have often shared your feeling of privilege to be part of the United Nations.  

Despite all the challenges, you said, “this is still the best place in the world to work”.

After ten years, I could not agree more.  

Today’s ceremony is also poignant for me since it takes place ten years to the day of my own election in 2006.

As I prepare to hand over the baton of leadership, I know that Member States, the outstanding women and men of the United Nations, and the people of the world are all looking forward to your tenure with confidence and excitement.  

Best wishes for your great success. Congratulations. Parabéns!  

Thank you very much.

Central African Republic: After standoff, UN force detains 10 armed men, recovers weapons cache

08-03-2015CAR_Peacekeep15 August 2016 – The United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic (CAR) has reported that after a standoff with a convoy of heavily-armed men near Sibut, the capital of Kémo Prefecture, UN forces detained 10 of the suspects and recovered a “significant quantity” of weapons and munitions.

According to a press release from the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), the convoy of some 35 men, which was believed to include several people who are the subject of arrest warrants, had departed Bangui, the nation’s capital, late Friday. The heavily-armed men exchanged fire with national security forces at several checkpoints en route, and these incidents resulted in a number of deaths and injuries, according to MINUSCA.

Early Saturday morning, MINUSCA forces blocked the convoy of seven vehicles from proceeding at 50 km south of Sibut and demanded that all weapons and munitions should be surrendered. This demand was rejected, and a stand-off ensued for several hours, the Mission said. Ten armed men were detained, and a significant quantity of weapons and munitions, as well as the vehicles used by the convoy were recovered, the Mission added.

MINUSCA has remained in contact with the Government throughout this episode, including at the highest levels, seeking to deploy a joint team of Government authorities who have the primary responsibility for the restoration and maintenance of public safety and the rule of law, the Mission said.

The UN Security Council, in its most recent resolution on the situation in the CAR, demanded that all militias and armed groups lay down their arms, and cease all forms of violence and destabilizing activities. MINUSCA reiterated its appeal to all armed groups and militias to adhere to the disarmament, demobilization, reintegration and repatriation process initiated by President Faustin-Archange Touadéra and encouraged all Central Africans to prioritize dialogue.

More than three years of civil war and sectarian violence have displaced thousands of people in the CAR amid continuing clashes between the mainly Muslim Séléka rebel coalition and anti-Balaka militia, which are mostly Christian.

Readout of the Secretary-General’s meeting with H.E. Mr. Faustin Archange Touadéra, President of the Central African Republic

New York, 21 April 2016

The Secretary-General met today with the President of the Central African Republic, H.E. Mr. Faustin Archange Touadéra. The Secretary-General congratulated Mr. Touadéra on his recent election and the timely formation of a government. Noting that the Central African Republic has turned a corner with the conclusion of the political transition, the Secretary-General stressed the importance of now addressing the root causes of the crisis.

They discussed immediate priorities for the new government. The Secretary-General reaffirmed the United Nations’ unwavering determination to continue supporting the Central African Republic. The Secretary-General also reiterated his firm determination to implement the United Nations zero-tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse.

Déclaration attribuable au Porte-parole du Secrétaire général sur la mort d’un casque bleu de la MINUSCA en République centrafricaine

New York, 18 avril 2016
Le Secrétaire général condamne la mort d’un casque bleu de la Mission Multidimensionnelle Intégrée de Stabilisation des Nations Unies en Centrafrique (MINUSCA), le 17 avril, dans la ville de Rafai, préfecture de Mbomou. L’incident s’est produit lorsqu’une patrouille de la MINUSCA a été déployée à Rafai en réponse à une attaque dans le village voisin, Agoumar, par des membres présumés de l’Armée de résistance du Seigneur. Un casque bleu marocain a été blessé par balle par des assaillants non identifiés et a succombé à ses blessures plus tard dans l’après-midi.
Le Secrétaire général réitère le fait que les attaques contre ceux qui œuvrent pour la paix et la sécurité en République centrafricaine sont inacceptables. Il appelle le gouvernement nouvellement élu à s’assurer que les auteurs soient traduits en justice.
Le Secrétaire général présente ses sincères condoléances à la famille de la victime ainsi qu’au Royaume du Maroc.

Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on the death of a MINUSCA peacekeeper in the Central African Republic

New York, 18 April 2016

The Secretary-General condemns the killing of a peacekeeper from the Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) on 17 April in the town of Rafai in Mbomou prefecture. The incident occurred when a MINUSCA patrol was dispatched to Rafai in response to an attack on the nearby village, Agoumar, by alleged elements of the Lord’s Resistance Army. A Moroccan peacekeeper was shot by unknown assailants and succumbed to his wounds later in the afternoon.

The Secretary-General reiterates that attacks against those who are working towards peace and security in the Central African Republic are unacceptable. He calls on the newly-elected Government to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to justice.

The Secretary-General offers his sincere condolences to the family of the victim and to the Kingdom of Morocco.

Official March Past Event for International Women’s Day

Photo9The UN System in Cameroon participated at the official March Past Event on 8 March organised by the Government, chaired by the Minister of Women’s Empowerment and the Family; Her Excellency Marie Therese Abena Ondoa, representing the First Lady of Cameroon.

An estimate of 35,000 women and men participated at the march past event which took place at the 20th May boulevard in the nation’s capital city of Yaounde, as was done across Cameroon.

Photo91Some 60 female and male UN Staff members took part in the colourful march past with banners carrying the IWD 2016 theme, led by some Heads of UN Agencies.

ONE UN STAND at National Exhibition in Yaounde 2016 International Women’s Day

PhotoThe United Nations System in Cameroon and the Ministry of Women’s Empowerment and the Family (MINPROFF) organized a series of activities to commemorate the 2016 International Women’s Day (IWD) on the theme chosen by the Cameroon government: Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: Meeting the challenge and overcoming the obstaclesfrom 04 – 08 March 2016. The theme for this 31 edition of IWD was taken from the global theme proposed by the United Nations: “Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality.

Photo2The UN System participated at the 2-day Exhibition set-up by MINPROFF at the esplanade of the Yaounde City Council from 03 to 04 March 2016 with a ONE UN STAND with UN Women and UNIC as lead. UN publications and documents on the IWD Theme and related issues were on display and for distribution to visitors at the stand such as Peace and Security, Development, Human Rights, Education of the young girls, UNSC Resolution 1325, Convention on the Elimination of all discrimination against women, UNSG Campaign to End Violence against Women, Maternal health, Population, Health, Gender, Children’s Right, Human Rights, Refugee Protection, Africa Renewal’s Special Edition on Women, amongst others.

Photo1These were contributed by UNWOMEN, UNESCO, UNICEF, UNDP, WHO, UNFPA, UNCHRD and UNIC. The stand received more than 400 visitors. UNIC also distributed copies of the UNSG message and Information Kits to special Guests, Civil Society leaders and the media.


UN Secretary-General on Cameroon [scroll down for English version]

Déclaration attribuable au Porte-parole du Secrétaire général sur le Cameroun

Ban-Ki-moonNew York, le 12 octobre 2015

Le Secrétaire général condamne les deux attentats-suicides qui ont été perpétrés simultanément à Kangaleri, Cameroun, le 11 octobre, par des membres présumés de Boko Haram. Depuis le mois de juillet 2015, le nord du Cameroun a subi quinze attentats-suicides distincts qui ont entrainé la mort d’un nombre important de civils. Le Secrétaire général présente ses condoléances aux familles des victimes ainsi qu’au Gouvernement et au peuple camerounais. Rien ne peut justifier de telles violences et assassinats aveugles.
Le Secrétaire général réitère sa solidarité avec le peuple camerounais. Il renouvelle le soutien des Nations Unies au Gouvernement du Cameroun et aux pays du Bassin du Lac Tchad dans leur lutte contre le terrorisme, fondée sur le droit international humanitaire, des droits de l’homme et des réfugiés.

 Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Cameroon

New York, 12 October 2015

The Secretary-General condemns the two simultaneous suicide attacks in Kangaleri, Cameroon, on 11 October, by suspected Boko Haram elements. Since July 2015, the Northern State of Cameroon has witnessed fifteen separate suicide attacks, causing the death of scores of civilians. The Secretary-General extends his condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government and people of Cameroon. There is no justification for such indiscriminate violence and killings.
The Secretary-General reaffirms his solidarity with the people of Cameroon. He reiterates the United Nations support to the Cameroonian government and the Lake Chad Basin countries in their fight against terrorism, grounded on international humanitarian, human rights and refugee law.

Ban Ki-moon marks UN at 70

“The 70th anniversary of the United Nations is an opportunity to reflect – to look back on the UN’s history and take stock of its enduring achievements. It is also an opportunity to spotlight where the UN – and the international community as a whole – needs to redouble its efforts to meet current and future challenges across the three pillars of its work: peace and security, development, and human rights.” – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s message for UN70