Mia Seppo joined the United Nations Country Team in Bangladesh as the Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in October 2017.
Prior to her appointment in Bangladesh, Ms. Seppo has served as the UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Malawi from April 2013 to October 2017, where among other initiatives she coordinated the UN system and partner support to the tripartite elections held in May 2014, the devastating floods in 2015 and the humanitarian response to the food insecurity in 2016-2017.
Between 2010 and 2013, she served as the UNDP Country Director in Sierra Leone, leading the UN support to the tripartite elections held in 2012. Ms. Seppo contributed to the UN’s work on aid coordination and development effectiveness in both countries. In partnership with the Peace Building Mission, Ms. Seppo led UNDP’s work on conflict prevention in Sierra Leone and the establishment of a National Peace Architecture in Malawi. Continue reading →
On the occasion of the Human Rights Day (10 December), UN Video has send a video message from the United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres. The Secretary-General calls on all to stand up and speak out for human rights, and help translate the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – the most translated document in the world – into action.
Next year, 2018, marks the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In the lead-up to the anniversary, you are invited to contribute to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Multilingual Video Collection. Anyone can record themselves on video reading one of the 30 articles of the Declaration, in any of the 135 languages currently available on the site, and submit the video for consideration.
This year’s commemoration of Human Rights Day marks the beginning of a year-long celebration of seven decades since the adoption of one of the world’s most profound and far-reaching international agreements. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights establishes the equality and dignity of every human being and stipulates that every government has a core duty to enable all people to enjoy all their inalienable rights and freedoms.
All of us have a right to speak freely and participate in decisions that affect our lives. We all have a right to live free from all forms of discrimination. We have a right to education, health care, economic opportunities and a decent standard of living. We have rights to privacy and justice. These rights are relevant to all of us, every day. They are the foundation of peaceful societies and sustainable development.
Since the proclamation of the Universal Declaration in 1948, human rights have been one of the three pillars of the United Nations, along with peace and development. While human rights abuses did not end when the Universal Declaration was adopted, the Declaration has helped countless people to gain greater freedom and security. It has helped to prevent violations, obtain justice for wrongs, and strengthen national and international human rights laws and safeguards. Continue reading →
Dhaka 6 December 2017: Over the past few days, the campaign, 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, has been spreading around the world. This is an annual event that starts on the “International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women” (November 25) and ends 16 days later on “Human Rights Day” (December 10). This year, the UN Secretary-General Antotio Guterres’s initiative UNiTE Campaign will mark the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence under the overarching theme, “Leave No One Behind: End Violence against Women and Girls”— reflecting the core principle of the trans-formative 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with the coordinating colour orange to symbolize a brighter future in which females can live without fear of violence. UN-Women along with other UN Agencies, including UNIC Dhaka, are taking part in this campaign in separate locations of Bangladesh. A partial view of UN staff members who expressed their solidarity for the 16 Days Activism.
Dhaka, 2 December 2017: With the theme of “Re-imagining Libraries, Technology Transfer And Resource Sharing in Libraries of Bangladesh: An Observation” a day-long workshop was organized by UNIC Dhaka and ICDDR,B on 2 December at ICDDR,B conference room. The thematic key-note paper was presented by Prof. Dr. S.M. Mannan, Department of Information Science and Library Management, University of Dhaka. ICDDR,B Head of Library Dr. Nazim Uddin and UNIC NIO M Moniruzzaman also spoke in the workshop while participants took part in open discussion and Question/Answer session. Two short videos of UN Library Network in Bangladesh and ICDDR,B library were screened before the audiences. Around forty library and information professionals from public, private, NGOs, academic and international institutions took part in the workshop.
COP23 refers to the 23rd Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). In 1992 at the Rio Earth Summit, UNFCCC was endorsed, signifying the beginning of the international community’s foremost collaborative effort to combat the issue of climate change. The UNFCCC, recognized also as the Rio Convention, inaugurated a basis for action to stabilize concentrations of greenhouse gases in the earth’s atmosphere. In 1994, the UNFCCC was enforced and nearly all of the world’s nations (195) have signed on. Government delegates and leaders congregated in Bonn, Germany for the 2017 UN Climate Change Conference. Under the Presidency of Fiji with the support of Germany, UN Climate Change will host this annual meeting. COP23 is taking place in Bonn, Germany, from the 6-17 November.
Dhaka 26 October 2017: In observance of United Nations Day, UNRC Office with the support of UN System organized a reception for the stakeholders associated with different UN agencies in Bangladesh. The Bangla translated version of volumous UN DPI publications – Aajker Jatisongho (Basic Facts About United Nations) was formally launched by Hon’ble Finance Minister and UN Resident Coordinator in Bangladesh. UN Secretary-General’s video message on UN Day was screened before the participants, a documentary composing of photographs of UN system-wide works was also screened before the audiences.The senior officials of different ministries including Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Fianance and Planning, Ministry of Public Administration, Chief of Army, Inspector General Police and other dignitories, diplomats, NGO representatives, civil society organizations, academicians and young leaders participated in the reception. The copies of Bangla version of Basic Facts about United Nations were distributed among the stakeholders who took part in the reception. UNIC Dhaka translated and published the book to cater the need of Bangla readers in home and abroad.
27 Oct 2017: Work has begun on repairing a major road linking the capital Juba to communities living in the north of the city by Bangladeshi engineers serving with the United Nations Mission in South Sudan.
The maintenance operation will cover 18 kilometres of road and is expected to be completed in six weeks’ time. The state of roads across South Sudan is causing significant problems for local communities and traders as well as the UN peacekeeping mission with war and weather devastating key infrastructure such as bridges and culverts and turning the surfaces into mud.
The Bangladeshi Project Officer, Major Kamrul Hasan, said the road maintenance would improve the situation for travellers as well as enable the engineering contingent to more easily access a gravel collection site.
The project is posing some major challenges.
“One of the major setback that is affecting our activities here is bad weather, there have been very heavy rain falls, which obstructed the progress of our work,” said Major Kamrul Hasan. “At one point soldiers at a check point also prevented us from collecting gravel despite the county commissioner giving us permission to do so”.
However, he said the community was very supportive with many of those passing waving in appreciation as they carried out their work.
Local authorities in the area have also expressed their appreciation with Ladu Deputy Commissioner Sapana Ginaba saying that road improvements would ease transportation woes in the area and encourage development.
GENEVA/DHAKA, 23 October: At the Pledging Conference for the Rohingya Refugee Crisis held in Geneva on 23 October, the international community came together and vowed to stand with the refugees in Bangladesh, committing to provide US$340 million to the ongoing humanitarian response.
At the beginning of October, the humanitarian community in Bangladesh released a Response Plan that called for $434 million. Since then the number of refugees in Bangladesh has continued to rise, with tens of thousands of people still making the journey across the border every week.
Prior to the Pledging Conference, the Response Plan was funded at only 27 percent. The commitments delivered at the conference were an opportunity for the international community to collectively mobilize resources to provide life-saving assistance to refugees, and members of the host community, in Cox’s Bazar. Continue reading →