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UNSC work in Feb to focus on climate, Covid, conflict

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United Nations, Feb 2 (IANS) The program of work for the UN Security Council (UNSC) in February will be focused on the global challenges of climate crisis, the Covid-19 pandemic and conflict, the Council President announced.

“Our overall objective is a Security Council that addresses significant global challenges. And those, I think, come into three words beginning with C: COVID, conflict and climate,” the UK’s Ambassador to the UN Barbara Woodward said.

The UK assumed the UNSC’S rotating presidency for the month of February on Monday.

“But we also want to see a Security Council that is taking the opportunity for new agreements, given the new (elected) members and the new commitment of the US administration to multi-lateralism. We also want to have a focus on transparency, on outcomes, and on the perspective of youth, because the challenges that we face now are truly inter-generational challenges,” she added.

Briefing reporters on the Security Council’s work, Woodward said UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson will preside over an open debate on climate security on February 23.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has agreed to brief the Council.

The debate will look, in particular, at the threats that climate change poses to conflict, to peace and security, the way in which droughts lead to famine, famine and floods cause displacement, she said.

“So we want to explore this sort of linkages and look at ways of preventing risks to peace and security.”

The UK will host the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland, later this year.

“Our second priority is Covid, and vaccinations are of course the most important element of combatting the spread of Covid at the moment. It’s a challenge that demands a global, a truly global response. Because as we all know, no one is safe until we are all safe,” said Woodward.

UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab will chair a meeting of the Security Council on February 18 to look at the way in which vaccine rollout could impact on peace and security, she said.

On the conflict issues, the Security Council will discuss Syria, Myanmar, Yemen as well as the threats posed by the Islamic State terrorist group, said the Ambassador.

–IANS

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