The SG: In Ethiopia over the weekend, the SG is now in the United Arab Emirates. Today he met with Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashed Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, where the two discussed developments in the region, including Syria, Iran, Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan, and in the Middle East Peace Process. He is also meeting with Princess Haya Bint Al-Hussein; Dr. Mohammad Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs; and Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, the CEO of Masdar, an Abu Dhabi-based commercial venture aimed at advancing clean energy to the forefront of the global power business. The SG will travel to Vienna, Austria and Geneva before returning to New York this weekend.
DRC: The Peace, Security, and Cooperation Framework for the DRC was signed yesterday in Addis Ababa. The SG considers the Framework a “milestone” but notes that it is now up to individual states – the DRC and neighboring countries – to implement action towards sustainable peace. The Security Council calls on the signatory States of the Framework to fully implement their commitments in good faith and supports the swift designation of a UN Special Envoy to support, coordinate, and assess national and regional efforts towards implementation. The SG briefed the press following the signing as well, noting that he will brief the Security Council on the status of the framework, future of MONUSCO, and an “Intervention Brigade” upon his return to NY next week.
HRC: The 22nd session of the Human Rights Council opened in Geneva today. Navi Pillay, the High Commissioner for Human Rights, opened the session, warning that, despite progress, far too many people still escape justice for human rights violations. International accountability mechanisms must be strengthened, she said. Pillay also noted that the SC has so far failed with regard to Syria, despite the repeated reports of widespread or systematic crimes and violations by her Office, the International Commission of Inquiry on Syria, civil society organizations and others.
Palestinian Prisoner: The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, is “deeply saddened and concerned” about the death of Arafat Jaradat this weekend, who was arrested on February 18 and has been in Israeli detention since. Mr. Serry and Deputy Special Coordinator James W. Rawley discussed the situation of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli detention today with Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad and Palestinian Chief Negotiator Saeb Erekat. Serry has called for an investigation, and both the SG and HR Chief Navi Pillay have expressed their concerned about the condition of Palestinian prisoners.