Today is the one-month anniversary of the volcano and tsunami in Tonga. Sanaka Samarasinha, United Nations Resident Coordinator, reiterated the Organization’s solidarity with the people of Tonga, where approximately 85 per cent of the population was impacted and more than 2,500 people have been internally displaced.
Today is the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. Only one in three science and engineering researchers in the world is a woman. In his message, the Secretary-General says that this inequality is depriving our world of enormous untapped talent and innovation.
The High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, today urged the President of Tunisia, Kaïs Saïed, to restore the High Judicial Council, warning that its dissolution would seriously undermine the rule of law, the separation of powers and independence of the judiciary in the country.
At least 10 people have died and more than 43,000 are displaced across 180 displacement sites as a result of Tropical Cyclone Batsirai, which made landfall on the east coast of Madagascar on 5 February. The first aerial assessment took place today with a United Nations Humanitarian Air Service flight.
At least 25 United Nations staff members and associated personnel – including 24 peacekeepers, 19 of whom worked for the Mission in Mali – were killed in deliberate attacks in 2021, according to the Standing Committee for the Security and Independence of the International Civil Service of the United Nations Staff Union.
The High Commissioner for Human Rights expressed alarm at the continued disappearance of six people abducted in Kabul two weeks ago in connection with recent women’s rights protests. It called on the de facto authorities to report the findings of their investigation and do their utmost to ensure the safe, immediate release of these individuals.
In tsunami-hit Tonga, the United Nations continues to support the recovery, providing satellite phones for Government staff to communicate while the underground communications cable undergoes repairs. On Tongatapu, the main island, 90 per cent of power has been restored and aid distribution continues.
On Myanmar, nearly one year after the takeover, the High Commissioner for Human Rights urged the international community to intensify pressure on the military to stop its campaign of violence against the people of the country and to insist on the prompt restoration of civilian rule.
At a meeting today on the Sahel region, the Emergency Relief Coordinator for the United Nations said that nearly 15 million people in Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso will need humanitarian assistance in 2022. This is 4 million more than one year ago.
Briefing the Security Council today on Afghanistan, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative there noted that, six months after the takeover by the Taliban, the country is hanging by a thread.