Belarus, Yemen, Occupied Palestinian Territory & other topics – Daily Briefing (24 May 2021)

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The UN’s chief administrative officer is the Secretary-General, currently Portuguese politician and diplomat António Guterres, who began his five year-term on 1 January 2017.


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  • United Nations published this video item, entitled “Belarus, Yemen, Occupied Palestinian Territory & other topics – Daily Briefing (24 May 2021)” – below is their description.

    Noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.


    – Belarus

    – Democratic Republic Of The Congo/Statement

    – Democratic Republic Of The Congo/Humanitarian

    – Samoa

    – Secretary-General/World Health Assembly

    – Secretary-General/Extractive Industries

    – Deputy Secretary-General

    – Security Council

    – Occupied Palestinian Territory

    – Yemen

    – Afghanistan

    – South Sudan

    – Central African Republic

    – Covax


    In a statement, the Secretary-General said he is deeply concerned over the apparent forced landing of a passenger aircraft over Belarus on 23 May and the subsequent detention of Mr. Roman Protasevich, a Belarusian journalist who was on board. The Secretary-General supports calls for a full, transparent and independent investigation into this disturbing incident and urges all relevant actors to cooperate with such an inquiry.

    The Secretary-General also remains greatly concerned by the deteriorating human rights situation in Belarus in the aftermath of last August’s presidential elections. He urges the Belarusian authorities to fully respect all its international human rights obligations, including in relation to the freedoms of expression, assembly and association.


    Our colleagues on the ground are telling us that 13 people have died following the eruption. Approximately 5,000 people have lost their homes.

    As you can imagine, these numbers are likely to change as more information comes in.

    After the eruption, most people fled, either towards Sake in North Kivu or across into Rwanda.

    The road between Rutshuru and Goma is blocked. It is important to note that this is the main supply line for food into Goma. Power lines and water supplies were also damaged and cut off electricity and water for approximately half a million people.

    Our UN peacekeeping mission on the ground also remains on high alert. During the eruption, several helicopter flights were organized by the Mission, including with volcano specialists, to assess the trajectory of the lava. Information was shared by the Mission with local authorities to guide them in their emergency response efforts.

    The lava streams stopped near Munigi, about 5 kilometres north-east of Goma, and that’s short of the airport. The airport does remain closed, and this impacts the movement of staff – humanitarian staff and peacekeeping staff and government workers – and supplies, and also impacts, evacuations.

    People who initially fled are gradually returning, but seismic activity continues to be reported.

    Since the alert was issued, the UN on the ground has been in constant contact with provincial authorities, including the provincial Protection of Civilian Office and the Goma Volcanic Observatory, to provide advice and support.

    A rapid needs assessment is underway. Our humanitarian colleagues have set up a crisis cell in Goma to coordinate assessments and response.

    We, along with the rest of the humanitarian community in the area, are supporting the Government-led response by providing water, shelter, health and family reunification. We are also mobilizing additional supplies and support. The peacekeeping mission is ready to clear the main roads leading to Goma as soon as conditions allow.

    The eruption occurs at a time when humanitarian needs are already high and increasing in North Kivu province. Forty-four per cent of the 5 million people internally displaced in the Democratic Republic of the Congo are in North Kivu. In addition, 3.2 million people in North Kivu – that’s 33 per cent of the population – are already severely food insecure.

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