Yemen Pledging Conference & other topics – Daily Briefing (2 June 2020)

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

Highlights:
– Yemen
– Financing for Development
– New Policy Brief on COVID-19 and People on the Move
– Libya
– Syria
– Niger
– Burkina Faso
– Somalia
– Ghana
– Bolivia
– El Salvador
– Climate Change
– Air Travel
– Financial Contributions

YEMEN
At the start of today’s Yemen Pledging Conference, the Secretary-General said that more than five years of conflict have left Yemenis hanging on by a thread, their economy in tatters, their institutions facing near-collapse. He also said that four people out of every five – or 24 million people in all – need lifesaving aid in what remains the world’s largest humanitarian crisis. 
We are in a race against time, the Secretary-General warned, as reports indicate that, in Aden, mortality rates from COVID-19 are among the highest in the world. He added that we must preserve the major humanitarian aid operation that is already underway – and the world’s largest – while developing new public health programmes to fight the virus and strengthen healthcare systems.
The Secretary-General said that aid agencies estimate they will need up to $2.41 billion to cover essential aid from June until December, and that includes programmes to counter COVID-19. Unless we secure significant funding, he added, more than 30 out of 41 major United Nations programmes in Yemen will close in the next few weeks. 
Mark Lowcock, our humanitarian chief, told the pledging conference that COVID-19 rapid response teams are funded only until the end of June. Next month, he said, we could start winding down treatment for severely malnourished children. Support for cholera facilities will also start to reduce. Mr. Lowcock added that pledges will not save lives unless they are paid, and so far, most of the pledges made remain unpaid.

FINANCING FOR DEVELOPMENT
Today, the Financing for Development Forum’s second meeting brought together representatives from banks, funds and financial institutions to mobilize $1.2 trillion dollars in humanitarian and economic relief to developing countries reeling under the impact of the pandemic.
The Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed, said it is important to find multilateral solutions to address the underlying fragilities that were exposed by the pandemic. She stressed that the UN’s focus is on developing countries.
Also participating in the meeting were the IMF, the World Bank and the African Development Bank, which are mobilizing $1 trillion – $175 billion and $13 billion respectively in COVID-19 relief. The multi-billion dollar Green Climate Fund, which has already suspended debt repayments for the next six months, is also being represented.

Full Highlights: https://www.un.org/sg/en/content/noon-briefing-highlight?date%5Bvalue%5D%5Bdate%5D=02%20June%202020

In This Story: Bolivia

Bolivia is a landlocked country located in western-central South America. The constitutional capital is Sucre, while the seat of government and executive capital is La Paz.

Its geography varies from the peaks of the Andes in the West, to the Eastern Lowlands, situated within the Amazon Basin.

The country’s population, estimated at 11 million, is multiethnic, including Amerindians, Mestizos, Europeans, Asians and Africans. Spanish is the official and predominant language, although 36 indigenous languages also have official status, of which the most commonly spoken are Guarani, Aymara and Quechua languages.

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    Burkina Faso is a landlocked country in West Africa that covers an area of around 274,200 square kilometres (105,900 sq mi) and is bordered by Mali, Niger, Benin, Togo, Ghana, and Ivory Coast.

    The July 2019 population estimate by the United Nations was 20,321,378. Previously called Republic of Upper Volta (1958–1984), it was renamed “Burkina Faso” on 4 August 1984 by President Thomas Sankara. Its citizens are known as Burkinabé, and its capital is Ouagadougou.

    Due to French colonialism, the country’s official language of government and business is French, but this language is spoken by approximately only 10-15% of the population. There are 59 native languages spoken in Burkina, with the most common language, Moore, spoken by roughly 50% of Burkinabé.

    The Republic of Upper Volta was established on 11 December 1958 as a self-governing colony within the French Community and on 5 August 1960 it gained full independence.

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    Climate Change is the name commonly given to the notion that the Earth is undergoing a changing climate as a result of human activity, including notable leaders, scientists and naturalists including Sir David Attenborough.

    Climate change includes both the global warming driven by human emissions of greenhouse gases, and the resulting large-scale shifts in weather patterns.

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  • In This Story: COVID-19

    Covid-19 is the official WHO name given to the novel coronavirus which broke out in late 2019 and began to spread in the early months of 2020.

    Symptoms of coronavirus

    The main symptoms of coronavirus are:

    • a persistent new cough (non productive, dry)
    • a high temperature (e.g. head feels warm to the touch)
    • shortness of breath (if this is abnormal for the individual, or increased)

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  • In This Story: El Salvador

    El Salvador, officially the Republic of El Salvador (Spanish: República de El Salvador, literally “Republic of The Saviour”), is a country in Central America. El Salvador’s capital and largest city is San Salvador.

    The colón, the currency of El Salvador since 1892, was replaced by the United States dollar in 2001.

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  • In This Story: Ghana

    Ghana, officially the Republic of Ghana, is a country along the Gulf of Guinea and the Atlantic Ocean, in the subregion of West Africa.

    Ghana means “Warrior King” in the Soninke language.

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