World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


New UN South Sudan envoy stresses civilian protection

New UN South Sudan envoy stresses civilian protection, national ownership of peace process

2 September 2014

Taking up her post today as head of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), Ellen Margrethe Løj acknowledged that while it was a “huge and difficult” challenge, the job was impossible to turn down because the country’s people had fought hard for their independence.

“I strongly believe that your sons and daughters should be able to focus on realizing their potential and not worry about whether they will be killed tomorrow or whether they will go hungry to bed,” said Ms. Løj, who is also the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for South Sudan.

Ms. Løj, a Danish national, has a wealth of experience in peacekeeping and international affairs, having served as Special Representative and head of the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) from 2008 to 2012. She previously held a number of senior positions in Denmark’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, including as her country’s Permanent Representative to the UN.

Today, in an interview for Radio Miraya, Ms. Løj noted that although there are about 100,000 displaced people who have sought shelter at UNMISS bases in the wake of the conflict that began last December, there are “probably more than a million internally displaced in the whole country.” “It is really a challenge that peace be established and the weapons are silent to give the citizens confidence to return to their villages,” she said. “In the meantime, we have to do what we can to protect them, to ensure that they as individual citizens feel safe.”

The new UNMISS chief clarified that the Mission’s current mandate focuses on protecting civilians, monitoring and reporting on human rights, facilitating the delivery of humanitarian assistance and providing support to the peace process led by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD).

“In describing the mandate, the Security Council very clearly put the citizens of South Sudan in the centre,” she said. “The mandate is very much focused on the boys and girls, men and women of South Sudan and … assisting in creating a system or a situation that can give them a better future.”

Asked by Radio Miraya about criticism that UN missions and interventions around the world fail to effectively address the root causes of conflicts, Ms. Løj said a peacekeeping mission can only assist in such a process.

“In a country coming out of conflict – a fragile country – a solution to address root causes cannot be imposed from abroad,” she said. “If you really want to solve those issues, there has to be national ownership.”

She emphasized that it was vital to involve all segments of society like churches, civil society, women’s and youth organizations.

Ms. Løj said she hoped to establish a constructive, mutually respectful cooperation between the Mission and the Government, as well as with other interlocutors in the country.

“I know in the past there have been certain disputes (regarding) respect for the Status of Forces Agreement (with the Government),” she said. “I understand that the situation has improved and it is certainly my hope that we will not be bogged down in details about that.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

South Sudan: UN Agencies Reach More Than Half A Million

South Sudan: UN Agencies Reach More than Half a Million People with Life-Saving Aid More>>

Israeli Plans To Expand Its Illegal Settlement Enterprises

PLO Executive Committee member, Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, strongly denounced Israeli plans to expand its illegal settlement enterprise by approving the construction of 2,561 units in the settlement of Givat Hamatos. More>>

ALSO:

Ecuador: Villagers Plan To Seize Chevron's $106M Arbitral Award

QUITO, ECUADOR, Sep. 30 /CSRwire/ - In what could be a huge boost to their campaign to force Chevron to comply with a $9.5 billion environmental judgment in Ecuador, rainforest villagers plan to enforce a court order directing them to take possession ... More>>

World Grossly Ill-Prepared To Deal Ebola Outbreak

Leaders from Sierra Leone and Liberia, the two countries, along with Guinea at the frontlines of the battle against the unprecedented Ebola outbreak in West Africa, urged the General Assembly today ensure the United Nations mounted a stronger, better coordinated response “to end this grave threat to our collective survival.”More>>

ALSO:

  • Save The Children - Save the Children Builds Its First Ebola Treatment Centre


  • Israel’s Netanyahu Warns Against ‘Militant Islam’

    29 September 2014 – From the podium of the General Assembly today Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned the world of the grave threat he said it faced from militant Islam’s desire to dominate the planet, be they Sunni extremists or ... More>>

    Deputy PM of Syria Victims Of ISIL Brutality 'Waiting On Us To Act'

    As the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militant began carrying their slaughter in the Middle East, “they might have surprised many of the countries present here, but not…us,” the Deputy Prime Minister of Syria told the United Nations General Assembly, underscoring today that the time has come for the world to stand united and tackle the threat head-on.More>>

    Not A Single Child Untouched By Recent Gaza Conflict

    There is not a single child who has not been adversely affected by the recent conflict in Gaza, where children suffer from bedwetting, difficulties in sleeping, nightmares, a loss of appetite, and display more aggressive behaviour at school, an independent United Nations human rights expert said todayMore>>


    Ebola: UN Readies To Start Work As Death Toll Surpasses 3,000

    Ebola response: medical supplies, including protective equipment and essential medicine, are loaded onto trucks at the Lungi International Airport in Freetown, capital of Sierra Leone. Photo: UNICEF/Sulaiman Stephens More>>

    Get More From Scoop

     
     
     
     
     
    World
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news