UN Secretary General, António Guterres, during a press conference ahead of the general debate of the 72nd session of the General Assembly - UN Photo - Mark Garten UN Secretary General, António Guterres, during a press conference ahead of the general debate of the 72nd session of the General Assembly - UN Photo - Mark Garten

U.N. chief launches reform initiatives in 72nd GNA session

Wed, Sep. 13, 2017
CAIRO – 13 September 2017: In his first press conference since the opening of the United Nations

General Assembly’s

(UNGA) 72nd session, Secretary General (SG) Antonio Guterres on Wednesday announced two initiatives to strengthen the U.N.'s work as a

“surge for diplomacy”.



The U.N. New Center reported that Guterres announced a new high-level advisory board on mediation to be comprised of 18 internationally-recognized personalities “who bring experience and skills, deep knowledge, and extensive contacts” to this task.

He also launched his gender parity strategy for the U.N. in the press conference, which aims to achieve parity at senior levels by 2021, and across the board by 2028. “This roadmap fulfills an urgent need, a moral duty, an operational necessity – and a personal priority,” he said.

Guterres added, “We must lead by example on gender equality and women's empowerment, which is one of the greatest human rights challenges and opportunities in our world.”

Furthermore, the SG reiterated his call on Myanmar authorities to suspend military action and end the violence against Rohingya Muslims from the Rakhine state, according to the UN News Center.



He also called for a political solution to the Korean peninsula crisis and said that nuclear and missile tests create great instability and tension throughout the region and beyond. “Unity in the Security Council is critical. This week's unanimous adoption of a new resolution sends a clear message that the DPRK must comply fully with its international obligations,” Guterres said, referring to new sanctions on North Korea.

The UN chief also highlighted the situation in the Central African Republic (CAR), which has seen a rise of 37 percent in refugees and displaced persons in the past three months. “This is grave cause for concern in a country where more than half the population is in dire need of assistance. I hope global leaders will give this crisis their attention during their talks next week,” he said. The SG mentioned that a high-level event on CAR is scheduled for Tuesday.
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