Sep 19, 2016

Secretary-General Ban and President Obama have begun their final “UN Week” in New York – a series of events that together make up the can’t-miss week for anyone looking to find solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. The hectic pace has already spilled over into Washington as many of the global leaders headed to UNHQ came here first – including for the Secretary Kerry hosted ‘Our Ocean’ conference. More high-level visits are expected next week.

The issue of migrants and refugees is high on the UN Week agenda – as are climate change, development and humanitarian work. And while the meetings revolve around the leaders of the 193 member states, great effort will be made to open the sessions to those around the world via webcast and social media. Such efforts are a testament both to the power of technology and its reach and to the understanding that success on any of these issues depend on global engagement.


71st UN General Assembly:

World leaders adopt bold plan to enhance protections for refugees and migrants (9/19)

Ahead of World Peace Day, UN chief says Global Goals are ‘building blocks for peace’ (9/16)

Curtain rises on world’s busiest diplomatic arena at UN Headquarters (9/16)

Refugees, climate change and Syria likely standouts during whirlwind week (9/14)

For a detailed list of events and meetings, please click here.

The Secretary-General:

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will participate in every high-level meeting and expects to meet with more than 100 heads of states and foreign ministers in New York this week.

Throughout the week – and the remaining months of his tenure as Secretary-General – Ban is working to see the Paris Agreement on Climate Change come into force. That will happen when at least 55 countries that together emit 55% of the world’s greenhouse gases – approve it.

  • For a list of emission levels by countries, please click here.

Ban will cap his week at the Global Citizen Festival (9/24) – a concert on Central Park’s Great Lawn that last year drew more than 60,000 people.

At the Security Council:

New Zealand holds the presidency for the month of September when the Council will host high-level briefings on the Middle East (particularly Syria), and on counter-terrorism/aviation security. Other briefings include those on Liberia, Libya, Somalia and Sudan.

  • The Council will receive the Secretary-General’s report on the humanitarian situation in Syria (9/20); and his report on UNDOF about the Golan Heights (9/22). It also will hear a briefing on Syria (9/21) and on counter-terrorism/aviation security. (9/22)
  • Last week, the Council approved Security Council resolution 2308, focusing on the situation in Liberia (9/14); and welcomed the peace agreement in Colombia and approved a UN monitoring/verification mission there. Security Council resolution 2307. (9/13)

In Washington:

Last week saw visits by:

  • Jamie McGoldrick, the Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen
  • UNDP Administrator Helen Clark
  • FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva
  • UNEP Executive Director Erik Solheim
  • UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé

No UN officials are expected this week.

Around the UN System:

  • Human Rights Council’s 33nd session (13-30 September)
  • The Secretary-General launched the “Together” campaign, which aims to highlight the economic, cultural and social contributions that migrants and refugees make to countries of origin, transit and destination. It will also counter some of the misinformation and misperceptions on refugees and migrants and encourage interpersonal contact between refugees, migrants and those in the destination countries.

International Days:

21 September                         International Day of Peace

The Sustainable Development Goals’ potential to be building blocks for peace is highlighted at numerous events at UN Headquarters. Events will be webcast live.


In Case You Missed It:

·         UN chief urges support for historic expansion of educational opportunity (9/18)

·         Ban hails fund to fight AIDS, TB, malaria as model for Global Goals (9/17)

·         The number of South Sudanese refugees reaches 1 million mark (9/16)

·         Syria: Aid convoys unable to reach besieged areas despite US-Russia deal (9/15)

·         Senior UN official sheds light on growing threat of antibiotic resistance (9/15)

·         UN agency launches action plan to tackle threat of ‘superbugs’ (9/14)

UN reports issued:

Secretary-General reports and notes:

Other reports: