SG highlight’s Nigeria’s commitment to the Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health, UNMIS, Security Council condemn violence in Abyei and more from UN Direct

SG: The SG is currently in Abuja, Nigeria, where he met with President Goodluck Jonathan, commending the President for his role in the resolution of the crisis in Côte d’Ivoire, discussing the deterioration of the security situation in Southern Sudan and its independence in July, and commending his leadership on facilitating primary health care throughout the country.  He also met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and  addressed the Presidential Committee on the status of the MDGs, telling them that improving women’s and children’s health is one of the keys to progress to achieving all MDGs. The SG was particularly pleased that the Nigerian government is working to allocate a portion of its oil wealth to support health initiatives for women and children (as they committed under the Global Strategy). He also visited a primary healthcare center near Abuja today, where he witnessed progress being made under the Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health.  Visiting the Maitama Hospital in Abuja yesterday, the SG commended the Nigerian government’s investment in women’s and children’s health, including the integration of services for maternal, newborn and child health with services for HIV/AIDS, TB, malaria and nutrition, and deployment of community health workers and midwives.

Sudan: UNMIS strongly condemned the burning and looting incidents in Abyei. The Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) are responsible for maintaining law and order in the areas they control, UNMIS explained. Therefore, they have the responsibility to intervene and stop such acts. The SG also condemned the escalating violence in the region that has injured peacekeepers in addition to civilians, and called on both parties to stop their military operations, and withdraw all forces and armed elements from Abyei.

Security Council: As part of their Africa mission, the Council has been in Sudan, and has also condemned recent attacks by southern Sudanese forces against a UN convoy on May 19th. They deplored the unilateral dissolution of the Abyei administration and called for it to be reestablished by mutual agreement without delay. They also demanded the immediate withdrawal of all military elements from Abyei and the full implementation of the Kadugli Agreement.  The Council is now in Juba, the capital of Southern Sudan.

Global Health: At the WHA today, the WHO drafted a plan committing Member States and development partners to implement priority nutrition interventions and policies on healthcare, education, and agriculture to improve the health of mothers and their children.

Upcoming Events: Valerie Amos, USG for Humanitarian Affairs and ERC, will be the guest at the noon briefing tomorrow on her recent activities and trip to Israel and the OPT.