Tag Archives: Antonio Guterres

The United Nations warns of mass famine in Yemen ahead of a donor conference | Instant News

CAIRO – The UN humanitarian agency on Sunday warned that more than 16 million people in Yemen will go hungry this year, with about half a million people in the war-torn country living in starvation-like conditions.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, or OCHA, said the risk of large-scale famine in the Arab world’s poorest country “has never been more acute,” adding that years of conflict, economic decline and institutional collapse had been created. huge humanitarian need in all sectors.

The stern warning came a day before a pledge conference co-hosted by Sweden and Switzerland. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres will appeal for $ 3.85 billion in humanitarian assistance for Yemen this year.

The response to UN calls is unlikely to live up to expectations, given the coronavirus pandemic and its devastating consequences sweeping economies around the world. Wealthy Gulf donors such as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, who generously contributed to UN calls in 2018 and 2019, drastically reduced aid to Yemen last year. amid the pandemic and corruption in the Yemeni relief effort.


The Yemen war began in 2014 when Houthi rebels seized the capital, Sanaa, and much of the north of the country. The Saudi-led and US-backed coalition intervened months later to expel the rebels and restore an internationally recognized government. The conflict has killed about 130,000 people and gave birth to the world’s worst humanitarian disaster.

The majority of Yemenis live in Houthi-controlled areas. The rebels have been implicated in the theft of aid and used access to aid to extort concessions and money. The US, one of the largest donors to Yemen, has suspended millions of dollars in aid to Houthi-controlled areas after reports of theft and looting of aid supplies. UN agencies have long complained about rebels stealing and rerouting food aid.

Monday’s pledge conference came as the Iran-backed Houthis renewed their offensive in the central province of Marib, fueling fears of a new humanitarian crisis in the region that hosts the country’s largest refugee population, according to local authorities.


The province, home to the ancient Great Marib Dam, has served as a sort of haven for some 1 million Yemenis who have fled Houthi attacks since the start of the war, according to UN figures.

The rebels have renewed their offensive into the oil-rich province, holding them back, but facing stiff resistance and heavy air strikes from the Saudi-led coalition. Hundreds, mostly Houthis, died in the fighting.

OCHA said fighting in Marib had displaced more than 8,000 civilians, mainly from Sirwah district, which is home to some 30,000 displaced people in at least 14 camps. Sirwah has witnessed the toughest battles, he said.

The agency warned about the possible displacement of another 380,000 people if fighting reached the actual city of Marib, the provincial capital, where refugee camps are already overcrowded.

In the port city of Hodeida, meanwhile, a blast overnight hit a residential building in al-Hawal district, killing at least five civilians, including a woman and a child, and injuring three others, the UN mission in the strategic city said on Sunday.


The mission, known as UNMHA, did not say the cause of the explosion or who was behind the explosion.

The head of the UN mission to Hodeida, retired General Abhijit Guha, urged the two sides to comply with the 2018 UN-brokered agreement that ended fighting in Hodeida, and allowed UN monitors to access sites of recent and significant military hostilities.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


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The complete list of 145 countries awaits the first vaccine dose as 10 countries dominate supply | Instant News

As many as 145 countries and territories have yet to start vaccinating against corona virus, with 10 countries having dealt 82 percent of the blow.

The latest figures from Our World in Data show the UK – which has launched nearly 18 million first doses so far – is among a select few countries that dominate supply.

Other countries are the US, China, India, Israel, Brazil, Turkey, UAE, Germany and Russia.

However, there are others listed as having yet to start the rollout, including New Zealand, South Korea and Australia, who have been more assertive on tackling the virus than many others.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, meanwhile, is described as receiving the vaccine over the weekend as the country prepares to start offering jabs to the general public.

COVID-19 screening underway in Johannesburg, South Africa
(Image: AFP via Getty Images)

UN Secretary General António Guterres called for more efforts to be made to spread the inoculation, calling progress “grossly uneven and unfair”.

Speaking at an open security council meeting last week, Guterres said: “Vaccine equity is the biggest moral test before the global community.

Sanitation workers wearing personal protective clothing (PPE) work in the main area of ​​Thean Hou Shrine during "Morning Prayers" Ceremony for the celebration of Chinese New Year in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Malaysia is one of the countries that has not started vaccination
(Image: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

“Defeating Covid-19, once we started to have the scientific capacity to do it, is more important than ever.

“The launch of the Covid-19 vaccine produces hope.

“At this critical juncture, vaccine distribution is the greatest moral test before the global community.

“We have to make sure that everyone, everywhere, can be vaccinated as quickly as possible.”

Body bearers carry a coffin at the National Hero Cemetery of Acre in Harare, Zimbabwe on January 27, 2021. The country's Foreign Minister Sibusiso Moyo was among the government officials buried.
Carryers carry coffins in Zimbabwe, with Foreign Minister Sibusiso Moyo among those killed
(Image: Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

So far, more than 209 million doses have been given in 92 countries, with a world population at 7.7 billion.

According to the Bloomberg Vaccine Tracker, an average of 2,470,772 injections are given each day.

Currently, 2,493,795 people have been confirmed to have died from the virus, among the 112,589,753 cases reported.

The Secretary-General went on to say if the virus continues to spread “like wildfire” anywhere in the world it will “mutate again and again” and potentially destroy the current vaccine.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said the virus could mutate again
(Image: Pictures of SIPA USA / PA)

“Those affected by conflict and insecurity are at special risk of being left out,” he said.

“When a pandemic strikes, we are only safe if everyone is safe.”

He said the COVAX program, a global tool for procuring and delivering vaccines to low and middle-income countries, needed to be “fully funded”.

And wants the Global Vaccination Plan “to unite with the required strength, scientific expertise and production and financial capacity”.

Men line up as Health Ministry officials conduct screening and testing for the coronavirus at the Wolhuter men's dormitory in Johannesburg
Men line up as Health Ministry officials conduct screening and testing for the coronavirus at the Wolhuter men’s dormitory in Johannesburg
(Image: AFP via Getty Images)

“Our efforts need to be comprehensive and well coordinated everywhere,” he said.

The Pfizer / BioNTech, Oxford / AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccines have all been approved for use in the UK, as well as a number of other countries, and require two doses for full protection.

Public Health England yesterday published real-world data showing Jab Pfizer reduced the risk of contracting the infection by more than 70 percent, increasing to 85 percent after the second dose.

Figures from the latest AstraZeneca trial show 76 percent efficacy of the vaccine after one dose and increase to 82 percent with a second dose after 12 weeks.

Police patrol the streets wearing personal protective equipment in Hong Kong
Police patrol the streets while wearing personal protective equipment in Hong Kong
(Image: AFP via Getty Images)

The data show Moderna has an efficacy of the first dose of 92.1 percent, increasing to 95 percent after two.

Other vaccines available are Russia’s Sputnik V – approved for use in several countries – and China’s CanSino Biologics, which has been approved for military use there, as well as in Mexico and Pakistan.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said: “Vaccinating everyone, everywhere, is our common way out of this pandemic and building back stronger.

Secretary of State Dominic Raab
Secretary of State Dominic Raab
(Image: PA)

“The UK is clear that as a world leader we have a moral and national interest to make this happen, which is why we are committed to sharing the bulk of future overdose with COVAX to support the countries that need it most.

“We are already one of the largest donors to COVAX, helping deliver more than one billion doses to the poorest people in the world.

“International cooperation must be at the core of this effort, so we call on the G7 and other countries to increase support for getting a vaccine for everyone.”

The following data are correct as of February 19.

145 countries and territories are still waiting


American Samoa


Antigua and Barbuda









Bonaire Sint Eustatius

Bosnia and Herzegovina


British Virgin Islands


Burkina Faso



Cape Verde

Central African Republic




Cook Islands

Ivory Coast



Democratic Republic of the Congo




Equatorial Guinea


In Swaziland


Falkland Islands


French Guiana

French Polynesia













Hong Kong

















Marshall Island




Micronesia (country)








New Caledonia

New Zealand





North Korea

North Macedonia

Northern Mariana Islands



Papua New Guinea



Puerto Rico



Saint Barthélemy

Saint Kitts and Nevis

Saint Lucia

Saint Martin (French part)

Saint Pierre and Miquelon

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines


San Marino

Sao Tome and Principe


Sierra Leone

Sint Maarten (Dutch part)

Solomon Island


south Africa

South Korea

South Sudan









To go



Trinidad and Tobago






United States Virgin Islands







Wallis and Futuna

Western Sahara





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The world’s biggest emitters such as India, China, Russia, need to step up: Kerry | Instant News

Kerry on Friday joined UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres for a special virtual event to mark the United States rejoining the Paris Agreement.

“We need the United States and every country to determine that they will be on the path to net zero-emissions by 2050. That’s not something we’re going to do with countries that just step up and say, ‘Hey! We are committed, this is who we are. Yes, we will in 2050 ‘. It didn’t work. That’s not enough. That’s not how we went to Glasgow, “said Kerry.

The UK will host the 26th UN Conference on Climate Change (COP26) in Glasgow in November this year.

The COP26 summit will bring together parties to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Kerry said when countries go to Glasgow, they have to get really real about “what we need to do from now on. What steps are we going to take in the next 10 years? And the reality is that everyone has to do that. China, that is, the world’s largest emitter, needs to be part of the 2020 to 2030 effort “.

“India needs to be a part of it. Russia needs to be a part of it. Japan, all of the world’s largest emitters, major emitters, 17 countries need to really step up and start reducing those emissions, “said Kerry.

This challenge means that all countries, setting bold and achievable targets, must do so right here at home, and in the process of their Declaration of National Specified Contribution, he said.

Under the Paris climate change agreement signed in 2015, India has committed to reduce the intensity of GHG (Greenhouse Gas) emissions of its GDP by 33-35 percent, increasing its non-fossil fuel power capacity to 40 percent from 28 percent in 2015, adding carbon sinks of 2.5-3 billion tonnes of CO2 per year by increasing forest cover, all by 2030.

The US officially re-entered the Paris Climate Agreement under the Biden administration after former president Donald Trump withdrew the country from a global deal that aims to limit global temperature rises to 1.5 Celsius above pre-industrial levels by limiting greenhouse gas emissions.

“The United States, again, is a party to the Paris Agreement. And I am proud and delighted by that fact but it also puts us under special responsibility, “Kerry said adding that Washington is rejoining the international climate effort with humility and with ambition.

“It is humility to know that we lost four years during America’s absence from the table. And it is humility to know that currently there are no countries and no continents to get the job done.

“But also with ambition, knowing that Paris itself will not do what science tells us to do together. At the COP of November, this November, when we go to Glasgow, all countries have to raise our views, have to raise a common ambition, or we will all fail together, “he said.

The former Foreign Minister, who accompanied his grandson when he signed the 2016 Paris Agreement at United Nations headquarters, warned that failure is not an option for the world.

“And that’s why increasing ambition is so important,” he said. Kerry noted that 2020 may have seen a reduction in global emissions due to Covid, but they have increased again.

“So to stay on track, to keep even the 66 percent chance of keeping global temperatures from rising more than 1.5 degrees, to do that we need to halve global emissions by 2030,” he said, adding this means countries need to remove coal five times faster than before and need to increase tree cover five times faster.

“We need to increase renewable energy six times faster. We need to switch to electric vehicles at speeds 22 times faster. You understand? “He said.

Kerry underlined that everything must be done with a greater sense of urgency, with the determination that “we have to win this fight.” Kerry emphasized that countries must encourage investment towards climate solutions and innovation, in resilience.

“We need to get the whole world on a path to net-zero emissions, and we have to really make sure that happens by 2050 and sooner, if possible.”

“Ultimately, maintaining the possibility of limiting the planet’s warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius is very important because we now know that anything more than that will have catastrophic implications around the world,” Kerry said.

This story has been published from wire agent bait without modification to the text.

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Amid Concerns Over ‘Chinese Style’ in Diplomacy, Beijing Shuts Off the Image of Conciliation | Instant News

New Delhi: Myanmar’s retreat from a nascent democracy to a military junta-ruled nation was at the heart of last week’s UN Security Council deliberations. The talks saw China join a consensus of concern over a military takeover in the Southeast Asian country.

The day after Myanmar’s military swooped in and arrested all ruling party leaders in the government, Great Britain, as Council President in February, held a closed emergency Council meeting. With UN Security Council member states showing varying degrees of concern over the developments, it took two days for them to issue a press statement on behalf of the Security Council.

China’s statements and actions have been watched with great interest in recent days, especially as China has a large role to play as Myanmar’s most critical external influence.

Interestingly, even before negotiations for the press release began, several western publications had published articles about China blocking the release of a unified document by the Council.

India, meanwhile, has faced the brunt of China’s blocking tactics on the UN Security Council for years. However, even an official Indian source noted that the Chinese diplomat did not actually prevent the release of the press statement. As an official said Wire, “Negotiation doesn’t get in the way. “

India has acted as “balancing factor,With all his suggestions in drafting the final statement was accepted, he added.

Meanwhile, Chinese diplomats are considered to have embracewolf warriors’ person, at the United Nations, that mark of diplomacy has not yet arrived.

That doesn’t mean that warning bells haven’t rung in Western capitals over China’s expanding influence in the UN system. In recent years, China has become the second largest assessed source of contribution to the UN budget after the United States. Chinese nationals lead four of the multilateral agency’s 15 specialized agencies. There is increasing Chinese interest in examining appointments to lead UN political and peacekeeping missions, which are of particular interest to other P5 members. wrote the former deputy secretary-general of political affairs at the United Nations, Jeffrey Feltman in September 2020.

However, China is not the only factor slowing down discussions at the United Nations.

In fact, Beijing is eager to present a constructive image as a ‘champion’ of multilateralism. Chinese President Xi Jinping’s 2017 speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos it was underlined that Beijing is stepping to fill the void from the US withdrawal from the multilateral platform.

Chinese President Xi Jinping attends the closing session of the National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China May 28, 2020.Photo: Reuters / Carlos Garcia Rawlins

China has exercised its veto power 16 times, 13 of which were shared with Russia. This includes one to block a US-backed resolution on Myanmar in 2007 calling for the release of political prisoners and a swift transition to democracy. According to a New York Time reporOn the double veto power, China and Russia have argued that they are both concerned about Myanmar, but view it as an internal issue that does not pose a threat to international peace and security.

Fourteen years later, there has been no such resistance in framing Myanmar’s development as of concern to the international community.

Coincidence, that is the latest UNSC press statement giving ASEAN a central role in the current crisis in Myanmar. That regional body positions after the February 1 coup It should be noted that “political stability in ASEAN Member States is very important to achieve a peaceful, stable and prosperous ASEAN Community”.

Of course, the press statement was the result of several ‘give and take’ between two different views in the Council. This, of course, was reflected in a statement that did not condemn, but expressed “deep concern” at the events and called for the immediate release of all detained leaders.

Sources said that western countries were “surprisingly” accommodating during negotiations for press statements. With Myanmar as the subject of the first Council meeting in the British presidency in February, Britain’s permanent UN representative Barbara Woodward is certainly keen to score early success. A fluent Chinese speaker, Woodward was also the British envoy to China for five years, before being sent to New York.

UNSG election

Another landmark event in New York was a joint letter from the Presidents of the Security Council and the General Assembly to all member states on February 5, which is move the successor selection process. António Guterres, whose term ends on December 31, 2021, has declared he is ready to serve a second term.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres is seen on a video screen during a virtual climate summit, known as the Petersberg Climate Dialogue, in Berlin on April 28, 2020. Photo: Michael Kappeler / Pool via Reuters

According to the UN Charter, the General Assembly appoints a Secretary General, upon recommendation of the Security Council. In the final selection process, there was the first public dialogue between UN member states and candidates.

Ultimately, the selection of a secretary general hinges on the views of the United States – and now China.

Currently, no names are circulating on the grapevine to challenge Guterres, but there is still enough time before the General Assembly holds an informal dialogue before May and June.

Last time, Eastern European countries should have had a chance to occupy top UN positions. However, there were many candidates from the regions who shared the votes. There are also campaigns that fail to get a woman to end up getting a shot at “hardest job in the world“.

This week at the UN Security Council

The council must decide on renewing the mandate of the Panel of Experts assisting the Sudanese sanctions committee before it expires on February 12. The UNSC meeting on the topic is scheduled for next Wednesday.

The day before, there was a meeting about the Middle East, with the agenda of the Syrian political process. Then it will be followed by a meeting on “Threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts”.


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Germany ′ happy ′ with UN chairman Antonio Guterres ′ second term | News | DW | Instant News

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Foreign Minister Heiko Maas on Friday welcomed the news Antonio Guterres will be available for a second term at the helm of the UN.

“In the past four years, he has demonstrated great skill and foresight in guiding the United Nations through difficult times and contributing significantly to strengthening peace and security,” Merkel and Maas said in a joint statement.

Guterres, Portugal’s former prime minister, has served as UN secretary-general since 2017 and plans to run for another five-year term.

Male 71 years outlines their priorities for next year in a speech at the UN General Assembly on Thursday.

“2020 brings tragedy and danger for us,” he said. “2021 must be the year to change teeth and get the world on the right track. We need to move from death to health, from disaster to reconstruction, from despair to hope, from business as usual to transformation.”

He also stressed the importance of an inclusive recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, and called for a new focus on fighting climate change, inequality, and strengthening human rights.

“We are pleased that Antonio Guterres will be available for a second term,” said a German government statement.

He added that Germany appreciated cooperation on “major issues such as climate change and health as well as efforts to promote peace in Libya.”


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