UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s MDG Advocacy Group’s Breakfast Session

un_newsFollowing the opening of the 69th UN General Assembly debate, the MDG advocacy group Co-Chaired by H.E. Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda and H.E. Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Norway, spoke at a breakfast gathering to showcasing the successes of the eight MDGs to deliver a more healthier, equitable and more sustainable future, and launching the MDG Advocates’ Leaders Report.

H.E. Ban Ki Moon elucidated that he established the advocacy group 5 years ago to mobilize support from members states, civil society, academia, parliaments and private sector to develop new and ground-breaking ideas and ways to accelerate the MDG implementations. He called the MDG advocacy group superheroes fighting to end extreme poverty. He then advocated for the support of the 17 new SDGs. Further the Co-Chairs of the advocacy group both pointed out that we can all be advocates of the MDGs.

President Kagame elucidated that the amount of time left for the expiration of the MDGs should not matter and the MDGs are a “floor not a celling” because being on track does not mean problems are solved. Prime Minister Solberg spoke of the courage of Malala Yousafzai, one of the contributed of the report, who she said is currently at school using her right to be educated. Next she asked us all to do “everything we can to prevent and end conflict while making sure that the generation of people living through these conflicts have access to education and health”.

Professor Jeffery Sacks promoted organizing and funding as a crucial means to solving problems in the world. Two speakers responded to his challenge. Prime Minister Solberg pledging that Norway will help bring quality education to a million more children in conflict areas. In addition, H.H. Sheikha Moza bint Nasser elucidated that her foundation “Educated A Child” has supported 2.5 million children in 33 countries and their goal is to reach 10 million children by the 2015 – 2016 school year.

Meeting Title: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s MDG Advocacy Group’s Breakfast Session, Organized by the The MDG Advocacy Group & The Roll Back Malaria Partnership (RBM).
Date: September 25th, 2014
Location: Delegates Dining Room, United Nations HQ, New York
Speakers: Opening remarks by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Co-Chairs HE Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway, and HE President Paul Kagame of Rwanda. Other Speakers HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, Christine (Stine) Bosse, CEO of TrygVesta Group, Chairman of Børnefonden / The Childrens’ Fund (Denmark), Ray Chambers, United Nations Special Envoy for Financing the Health Millennium Development Goals and For Malaria (United States), Dho Young-shim, Chairperson of the UN World Tourism Organization’s Sustainable Tourism for Eliminating Poverty (ST-EP) Foundation (Republic of Korea), Robert Edward Turner – III, Philanthropist, Chairman of the United Nations Foundation (United States), Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs, United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on the MDGs (United States), Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Peace Prize Winner, founder of the Grameen Bank (Bangladesh), Philippe Douste-Blazy , United Nations Special Advisor on innovative financing for development (France), with the participation of Dr. Fatoumata Nafo-Traoré, RBM Executive Director
Written By WIT Representative: Modou Cham
Edited by WIT Representative: Aslesha Dhillon 

Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate Illicit Arms Trade

An open-ended informal consultations session was held today at the United Nations Headquarters to consider the implementation of the Programme of Action (PoA) to prevent, combat and eradicate the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons in all its aspects. This meeting focussed on compiling a draft based on the recommendations by the member states in preparation for the upcoming Fifth Biennial Meeting of states from 16th to 20th June 2014.

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In their recommendations, the speakers underscored the nature of present day conflicts as being mostly fought with small arms and therefore, stressed upon the importance of combating this illicit trade. Small arms have become major instruments of tactical and strategic use to terrorists in recent years, thereby, calling for an immediate and a proactive action by the international community.

The delegations of Member states endeavored to produce a collective document at the Fifth Biennial Meeting of states to reflect a collective consensus. The delegation of Cuba recommended that each state establish their own rules, standards, and indicators, conforming to and in consistency with their national priorities, which have to be agreed upon collectively.

Many delegations spotlighted the key role of the civil society in catalyzing international cooperation. Non-governmental organizations can contribute to this process by providing expertise and raising awareness about the devastating consequences of the illicit trade of small arms and light weapons.

The delegation of Mexico proposed to include targeted control measures for illicit brokering, special attention to countries affected by endemic violence and the promotion of synergies between PoA and other instruments, such as the Firearms Protocol and the ATT. The idea of promoting synergies between different instruments will be a stepping-stone towards providing a mutual reinforcement for achieving a control at global level. The cooperation and consensus, hence achieved, would foster a culture of peace, which is the ultimate objective of preventing, combating and eradicating illicit trade in small arms and light weapons.

Meeting Title: Informal consultation on the Programme of Action (PoA) to prevent, combat and eradicate illicit arms trade
Chair: H.E. Dr. Zahir Tanin, Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to the United Nations
Date: 13 June, 2014
Location: CR 2, CB, United Nations HQ, New York
Written by WIT representative: Nusrat Laskar