Tag Archives: Sustainable Development Goals

UNODC World Drug Report 2016 presented in Tashkent

This year’s World Drug Report released by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) was presented in Tashkent on June 27 at a press conference dedicated to the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. The gathering also focused on Uzbekistan’s efforts to counter illegal drug trafficking.

_UNI5773Speaking at the press conference, the UNODC Regional Representative for Central Asia, Ashita Mittal, quoted UN Secretary General who called on countries and communities “to continue to improve the lives of everyone blighted by drug abuse by integrating security and public safety with a heightened focus on health, human rights, and sustainable development.” She also drew attention to the campaign’s slogan, “First Listen”, which is an initiative to increase support for prevention of drug use that is based on science and is thus an effective investment in the well-being of children and youth, their families and their communities.

The Director of the National Information Analytical Centre on Drug Control under the Cabinet of Ministries of Uzbekistan, Akhmed Mansurov, told those gathered about the efforts to counter illegal drug trafficking in the country. “It is obvious today that Afghan drugs are a destabilizing factor for the region and beyond,” he said. “In 2015, the law enforcement agencies of Uzbekistan were focused on suppressing drug trafficking while paying special attention to the destruction of the illicit drug supply channels into the country and their transit through its territory, in addition to the steady demolishment of organized criminal groups.”

Around five percent of the adult population, or nearly 250 million people between the ages of 15 and 64, used at least one drug in 2014, according to the latest World Drug Report. Although substantial, this figure has not grown over the past four years in proportion to the global population. The report, however, suggests that the number of people classified as suffering from drug user disorders has increased disproportionally for the first time in six years. There are now over 29 million people within this category (compared to the previous figure of 27 million). Additionally, around 12 million people inject drugs with 14 percent of these living with HIV. The overall impact of drug use in terms of health consequences continues to be devastating.

UNODC World Drug Report 2016 presented in Tashkent This report comes soon after April’s UN General Assembly special session on the world drug problem (UNGASS), a landmark moment in global drug policy which resulted in a series of concrete operational recommendations. Collectively, these look to promote long-term, sustainable, development-oriented and balanced drug control policies and programmes. As UNODC Executive Director Yury Fedotov notes, it is critical that the international community come together to ensure the commitments adopted at the UNGASS are met – and the World Drug Report offers an important tool to assist with this task. “By providing a comprehensive overview of major developments in drug markets, trafficking routes and the health impact of drug use, the 2016 World Drug Report highlights support for the comprehensive, balanced and integrated rights-based approaches as reflected in the outcome document which emerged from the UNGASS.”

The world drug problem and sustainable development

With 2016 marking the first year of the adoption of the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the report provides a special focus on the world drug problem within this context. In analysing these linkages the SDGs have been divided into five broad areas: social development; economic development; environmental sustainability; peaceful, just and inclusive societies; and partnerships.

The report highlights a strong link between poverty and several aspects of the drug problem. Indeed, the brunt of the drug use problem is borne by people who are poor in relation to the societies in which they live, as can be seen in stark terms in wealthier countries. The strong association between social and economic disadvantage and drug use disorders can be seen when analysing different aspects of marginalization and social exclusion, such as unemployment and low levels of education.

The report also sheds some light on the varied ways in which the world drug problem results in _UNI5747different manifestations of violence. While the intensity of drug-related violence is greatest when associated with drug trafficking and production, these do not necessarily produce violence, as illustrated by the low levels of homicide in transit countries affected by the opiate trafficking routes in Asia. The drug trade is generally seen to flourish where State presence is weak, where the rule of law is unevenly applied, and where opportunities for corruption exist.

The report analyses the influence of the criminal justice system on drug trafficking and drug markets, as well as on drug use and people who use drugs. For example, it notes that globally 30 percent of the prison population is made up of un-sentenced or pre-trial prisoners. Among the convicted prisoners, 18 percent are in prison for drug-related offences. The excessive use of imprisonment for drug-related offences of a minor nature is ineffective in reducing recidivism and overburdens criminal justice systems, preventing them from efficiently coping with more serious crimes. Provision of evidence-based treatment and care services to drug-using offenders, as an alternative to incarceration, has been shown to substantially increase recovery and reduce recidivism.

For the full report and media content, please visit: www.unodc.org/wdr2016

 

Secretary-General’s Message for the 100-day countdown to the International Day of Peace (13 June)

SG's Message for the 100-day countdown to the International Day of Peace

Every year on the International Day of Peace, the United Nations calls on the peoples of the world to remember their common humanity and join together to build a future free of strife. It calls on all of us to observe a day of global ceasefire and non-violence, and to honour a cessation of hostilities for the duration of the Day.

This year’s theme – the Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace – highlights how ending poverty, protecting the planet and ensuring broadly shared prosperity all contribute to global harmony.  When we all work together, we can make peace possible, starting with 24 hours of peace on September 21.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals were unanimously adopted by the 193 Member States of the United Nations at an historic summit in September 2015. They are universal, applying to all countries. And they are integral to achieving peace.

SDG #16 specifically focuses on “Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions”. Yet peace runs like a thread through all 17 of the Goals.

When people feel secure in their abilities to provide for their families, when they are given access to the resources they need to live healthy lives, and when they feel truly included in their societies, then they are much less likely to engage in conflict.

That is why, over the next 100 days, we must recognize that development and peace are interdependent and mutually reinforcing. We need to work together to help promote and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. The leaders of the world have given us a clear blueprint, and by following it, we can help build a future of peace and prosperity.

Ban Ki-moon

The Secretary-General’s message on World Health Day 2016

World Health Day 2016 Diabetes is an ancient disease that is taking a growing toll on the modern world.  In 1980, 108 million adults were living with diabetes.  By 2014, that number had risen to 422 million – 8.5 per cent of adults — reflecting a global increase in risk factors such as being overweight or obese.  Even though we have the tools to prevent and treat it, diabetes now causes some 1.5 million deaths a year.  High blood glucose causes an additional 2.2 million deaths.

This year, the World Health Organization has issued its first Global Report on Diabetes, outlining the scale of the problem and suggesting ways to reverse current trends.  The burden of diabetes is not equally shared, within or between countries.  People in low- and middle-income countries are disproportionately affected, but wherever we find poverty we also find disease and premature deaths.

Diabetes affects countries’ health systems and economies, through increased medical costs and lost wages.  In 2011, world leaders agreed that non-communicable diseases, including diabetes, represent a major challenge to achieving sustainable development.  Last year, Governments adopted the Sustainable Development Goals, which include the target of reducing premature mortality from non-communicable diseases by one-third.

We can limit the spread and impact of diabetes by promoting and adopting healthier lifestyles, especially among young people.  This includes eating better and being physically active.  We must also improve diabetes diagnosis and access to essential medicines such as insulin.

Governments, health-care providers, people with diabetes, civil society, food producers and manufacturers and suppliers of medicines and technology must all contribute to changing the status quo.

On this World Health Day, let us all commit to working together to halt the rise in diabetes and improve the lives of those living with this dangerous but preventable and treatable disease.

The Secretary-General’s message on International Day of Sport for Development and Peace

International Day of Sport for Development and Peace 2016Sport is a unique and powerful tool for promoting dignity and the equal and inalienable rights of every member of the human family.  It is a driving force for positive social change.  That is why some of the world’s greatest sportsmen and women have been, and remain, engaged in helping the United Nations to raise awareness on important issues such as hunger, HIV-AIDS, gender equality and environmental stewardship.

This year the world is embarking on a major new challenge – implementing the visionary 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.  United Nations Member States have adopted 17 universal Sustainable Development Goals to build a future of peace, justice, dignity and opportunity for all.  Together, they provide a set of integrated and indivisible priorities for people, planet, prosperity, partnership and peace.

To reach these global goals, we must engage all sectors of society, everywhere.  Sport has an essential role to play.  Sport promotes health and well-being.  It fosters tolerance, mutual understanding and peace.  It contributes to social inclusion and equality.  It empowers women and girls and persons with disabilities.  It is a vital part of quality education in schools.  It empowers, inspires and unites.

On this third International Day of Sport for Development and Peace, I urge Governments, organizations, businesses, and all actors in society to harness the values and power of sport to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.  By working – and playing – together, we can create the future we want.

The Secretary-General’s message on World Cancer Day

World Cancer Day 2016World Cancer Day, always an opportunity to rally the world, has special impetus this year thanks to the recent adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which aims to usher in a life of dignity for all people.

The Sustainable Development Goals endorsed by all governments call for reducing by one third premature death from non-communicable diseases. This builds on an historic commitment made in 2011 by Heads of State. We are also guided by the Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health, and the Every Woman Every Child movement behind it, which are working for stronger health systems, universal health care coverage and scaling up of life-saving interventions for comprehensive cancer prevention and control.

We must do more to end the many tragedies that cancer inflicts. About one third of cancers can be prevented, while others are curable if diagnosed and treated early. And even when cancer is advanced, patients should benefit from palliative care.

Cancer affects all countries, but those with fewer resources are hit hardest. Nothing illustrates this better than the burden of cervical cancer. The world’s poorest countries are home to more than 8 in 10 women newly diagnosed with cervical cancer, and 9 in 10 deaths from the disease.

While applauding the success of cervical cancer screening in many high-income countries, we have a responsibility to replicate this progress in low-income States, where cervical cancer remains one of the most common cancers among women.

Today, we have the knowledge, experience and tools to protect every woman, everywhere. Comprehensive cervical cancer prevention includes vaccines to protect girls against future infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV), screening measures and preventive treatment of pre-cancers.

Where a person lives should not determine if they develop a cancer or die from it. We must work together to eliminate cervical cancer as a public health issue and to reduce the burden that millions face from all cancers.

On World Cancer Day, let us resolve to end the injustice of preventable suffering from this disease as part of our larger push to leave no one behind.

UN Resident Coordinator Stefan Priesner delivers lecture at WIUT

UN Resident Coordinator Stefan Priesner delivers lecture at WIUTOn January 27, 2016, UN Resident Coordinator in Uzbekistan Stefan Priesner delivered a lecture at Westminster International University in Tashkent. Titled “Role of UN in Globalized World: Focus on Development”, the lecture was organized in an effort to raise public awareness of the UN’s achievements.

At the start of the lecture, Mr. Priesner told those gathered about the three fundamental goals the UN strives to maintain: peace and security, development, and human rights. Defining development goals plays a crucial role in reaching these goals. This can be exemplified by the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) adopted in 2000 and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) defined in 2015.

After a brief analysis of the MDGs achieved in Uzbekistan and other countries, Mr. Priesner spoke about the Sustainable Development Goals and highlighted the importance and implications of this new milestone in the history of the UN.

The Resident Coordinator also focused on key elements of SDGs such as welfare, environmental protection, protection of human rights and dignity, injustice and partnerships. Toward the end of the lecture, Mr. Priesner told students how the UN expects to implement the SDG global agenda at country level. Countries across the world have to adapt these global goals to the national context and take measures to achieve them.

The new UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) for Uzbekistan for 2016-2020 defines how UN agencies will be assisting the country with the implementation of the SDGs.

Stefan Priesner outlines UN Priorities for Uzbekistan in 2016

Stefan Priesner outlines UN Priorities for Uzbekistan in 2016Dear friends

I would like to extend my warmest greetings

  • 2015 was a very important year for the United Nations. World leaders endorsed the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) framework – a roadmap to guide the global community toward a sustainable path of development for the next 15 years until 2030.
  • 2015 was also very significant for the cooperation between the United Nations family in Uzbekistan and the Government as we agreed on and launched a new 5-year cycle of cooperation – the UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) for Uzbekistan for 2016-2020.
  • This – the global and the local framework – is the starting point for a dynamic year 2016 and here are our priorities:
  • First 2016 is an important year for adapting the global SDGs to the national context.
  • The UN system in Uzbekistan will be supporting the Government in SDG localization through:
    • engaging in stakeholder consultations; developing targets and indicators that are tailored to the country’s specific situation – will help the country to fully participate in this global effort
    • Many of these targets are already in the UNDAF, since it is closely aligned to the SDG framework.
    • Hence our second priority is to agree on a detailed workplan with the Government in our six areas of cooperation – health, education, livelihoods, social protection, environment and governance; this will be completed soon and then we are in implementation mode – we foresee a volume of 25 mill. USD, supporting some 40 different Govt. and non-govt. institutions for 2016
    • Thirdly, the UN system is planning to dedicate special efforts to support the Government in the “Year of Healthy Mother and Healthy Child”.
    • We are looking forward to joining our efforts to support the Government in this regard through such assistance as:
    • further improvement of quality of mother and child health care services (new-born care, including emergency  obstetric and antenatal care)
    • launching a UN joint programme to address the needs of Persons with Disabilities, including women and children with disabilities;
    • providing policy advice to the Government on enhancing employment opportunities for women and girls;
    • supporting the formulation of policy recommendations on improving the social protection of female headed households;
    • So in conclusion: we look very much forward to a fruitful and vibrant year of cooperation with the Govt. the aim of promoting people-centered development in Uzbekistan

The Transformation to a More Sustainable and Just World Begins Now

Mogens Lykketoft:"The transformation to a more sustainable and just world begins now"Ask anyone for their abiding memory of 2015 and they will most likely recall a negative one.

Some will recall the horrifying stories of death and destruction caused by conflicts around the world, most notably in Syria where over 250,000 people have lost their lives and almost 11 million people have been displaced. Others will recall a sense of grief, fear and anger after violent extremists attacked, tortured, kidnapped and executed innocent civilians around the world. Others still might recall a simple but disturbing fact they heard in passing – that 2015 was the hottest year on record or that over 15,000 children continue to die annually, mostly from preventable diseases.

Yet, despite all of this, 2015 was also a year of progress and breakthroughs.

2015 was the year, for instance, when health workers and public officials supported by the international community brought an end to the Ebola Epidemic in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea. It was the year when the UN Millennium Development Goals expired, having helped to reduce the number of people living in extreme poverty globally by over 50%. And it was the year when talks not tanks led to improvements in Cuba/US relations, an Iranian nuclear deal, a breakthrough in peace-talks in Colombia, transition in the Central African Republic. And most recently, a roadmap on resolving the Syria conflict was agreed on in the Security Council; the hope is that finally we can begin to contain this horrible humanitarian disaster.

Each of these is a great achievement in its own right. But it was the adoption, by more than 193 members of the United Nations, of three major international agreements that gives me greatest hope for the future.

In September, world leaders descended on New York to embrace a new compact for people and planet anchored in 17 Sustainable Development Goals known as the SDGs. In Addis Ababa, just two months earlier, those same leaders committed to a new global framework on finance, capacity building, technology, trade, debt and other issues to support the realization of these goals. And in Paris earlier this month, after years of disappointment, they overcame divisions and agreed on how to avert catastrophic climate change while advancing human progress.

Through these agreements, governments everywhere have committed to advance three critical transformations in our world. First, they committed to address the root causes of poverty and hunger and to advance human development and gender equality everywhere. Second, they agreed to promote shared prosperity while transitioning to a low-carbon climate-resilient economy and protecting our natural environment. And, third, they agreed to improve governance at all levels so as to bring about more peaceful, just and inclusive societies.

Skeptics will of course question both the ability and commitment of governments to translate these agreements into real change. But not only do I believe that we can succeed, I truly believe that we will succeed.

Let me explain why.

After 50 years in politics, I have never seen negotiations that were more deliberative or more inclusive than those that gave rise to these agreements. The result is that these agreements have real political buy-in at the highest possible level. They have also helped create a global movement for positive change, involving civil society, young people, private companies and more, that will be with us every step of the way over the next fifteen years. And from the Millennium Development Goals to reduction in the price of renewables, many governments and many companies are demonstrating that the change we need is not only possible but already happening.

In 2016, however, we must build on this momentum and secure early implementation. To do so, we need action from all actors. As President of the United Nations General Assembly, this is my top priority.

Governments, for example, must identify and plan for the changes they need to undertake to reach these new Goals. They must invest in essential services so that all people can fulfill their potential. They must create an enabling legal and policy framework that encourages more responsible consumption and increased investment in sustainable infrastructure. And they must advance more transparent and inclusive governance so that everyone pays their fair share, people live in freedom and security, and societies become more cohesive and more equal.

At the international level, we need a United Nations system that is ready to give countries the support they need. We also need to ensure that exclusive economic decision-making forums, such as the World Bank and IMF, the G20 etc, become more aligned with this new Agenda.

In the area of peace and security, we need changes at the UN so that we can become better at preventing conflicts and protecting human rights before it is too late.

The Sustainable Development Goals also demand action from the private sector. They must align their corporate activities with the essence of the new Goals. They can turn their innovation towards finding SDG solutions and partner with governments and other key actors to support and finance implementation. This includes the global finance industry which must now embrace the shift. Governments must ensure a framework of regulation and taxation for the private sector that makes it obvious that green investment is not just the best for the environment and the future of mankind, but the best for business too.

Finally, change will not happen without action and pressure from civil society and ordinary people everywhere. Non-governmental organizations need to hold governments to account for the commitments they have made in 2015. Philanthropic foundations need to support causes that are aligned with the SDGs and work more effectively with governments and other actors. And ordinary citizens, young people, and others can use the incredible explosion in information technology in recent years to become key drivers of implementation.

If 2015 was a year of incredible breakthroughs, then 2016 must mark the moment when all of us begin to deliver, when we begin to make the transformation needed to a more sustainable and just world.

Find out more:
http://www.un.org/pga/70/
http://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/

The Secretary-General’s message on World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day 2015

This year, we mark World AIDS Day with new hope. I applaud the staunch advocacy of activists. I commend the persistent efforts of health workers. And I pay tribute to the principled stance of human rights defenders and the courage of all those who have joined forces to fight for global progress against the disease.

World leaders have unanimously committed to ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals adopted in September. This commitment reflects the power of solidarity to forge, from a destructive disease, one of the most inclusive movements in modern history.

We have a lot to learn from the AIDS response. One by one people stood up for science, human rights and the empowerment of all those living with HIV. And this is how we will end the epidemic: by moving forward together.

The window of opportunity to act is closing. That is why I am calling for a Fast-Track approach to front-load investments and close the gap between needs and services.

To break the epidemic and prevent it from rebounding, we must act on all fronts. We need to more than double the number of people on life-changing treatment to reach all 37 million of those living with HIV. We need to provide adolescent girls and young women with access to education and real options to protect themselves from HIV. And we need to provide key populations with full access to services delivered with dignity and respect.

Every child can be born free from HIV to mothers who not only survive but thrive. Ending AIDS is essential to the success of Every Woman Every Child and the Global Strategy I launched to ensure the health and well-being of women, children and adolescents within a generation.

Reaching the Fast-Track Targets will prevent new HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths while eliminating HIV-related stigma and discrimination.

I look forward to the 2016 High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on AIDS as a critical chance for the world to commit to Fast-Track the end of AIDS.

On this World AIDS Day, let us pay tribute to all those who have lost their lives to this disease by renewing our resolve to stand for justice, access and greater hope around the world.

Chiefs of UN agencies deliver sustainable development lectures for Uzbek students

The UN Office in Uzbekistan has launched a series of lectures on sustainable developmentAs part of the celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the United Nations, chiefs of UN agencies in Uzbekistan delivered a series of lectures on sustainable development for students of five universities in Tashkent. Organized by the UN Office in Tashkent in partnership with Uzbekistan’s Ministry of Higher and Secondary Special Education, the lectures were based on the thematic areas of the 2016-2020 UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) programme for Uzbekistan.

The first in the series of lectures was delivered by UNICEF Representative in Uzbekistan Robert Fuderich on 11 November at Tashkent Economic University. The lecture focused on economic development and social protection. Mr. Fuderich placed emphasis on the concepts of “equal rights” and “justice” as well as the importance of the three components of sustainable development: the environment, justice and economic development.

On 12 November, Tashkent Agrarian University students had the opportunity to attend a lecture by Deputy Representative of UNDP in Uzbekistan Farid Karahanov and reinforce their understanding of problems such as global climate change, preservation of biological diversity, effective use of natural resources as well as provision of environmental sustainability in the context of sustainable development.

On 13 November, Tashkent Medical Academy hosted the chief of UNFPA in Uzbekistan, Mieko Yabuta, who discussed issues in the development of healthcare, which is called to ensure comprehensive coverage and boost the quality of life and increase life expectancy globally.

On 24 November, UNESCO Representative in Uzbekistan Krista Pikkat met with Tashkent Pedagogical University students to discuss provision of access to quality education for all people and efforts to help them gain knowledge and learn skills that would enable them engage fully in society.

On 30 November, UN Resident Coordinator in Uzbekistan Stefan Priesner presented a lecture at the National University of Uzbekistan. Mr. Priesner talked about effective governance and the rule of law as fundamental factors in ensuring sustainable development.