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Opinions & Interviews

26 Jan 2016

Dapkiunas: UNDP plays an important role in coordinating international cooperation on Chernobyl

MINSK, 26 January (BelTA) – The UNDP plays an important role in coordinating international cooperation on Chernobyl, Belarus’ Permanent Representative to the UN Andrei Dapkiunas said when speaking at the first session of the Executive Board of the United Nations Development Program, the United Nations Population Fund and the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNDP/UNFPA/UNOPS) at the UN headquarters in New York on 25 January, BelTA learned from the Belarusian Minsitry of Foreign Affairs.

Belarus is a member of the Executive Board in 2016-2018. Addressing the participants of the session Andrei Dapkiunas acknowledged the leading role of the UNDP in assisting countries in achieving the sustainable development goals. Belarus’ representative expressed appreciation to UNDP Administrator Helen Clark, Director of the Regional Bureau for Europe and the CIS of the UN Development Program Cihan Sultanoglu and the UNDP team for the open and engaging manner of the work at the global, regional and national levels.

The Belarusian diplomat called on donor countries not to reduce funding of the UNDP’s activities, primarily in part of its core resources. Andrei Dapkiunas noted that the UNDP must have sufficient resources to accomplish ambitious tasks set by the UN member states.

Belarus’ representative praised UNDP efforts to advance gender equality and women’s rights. He added that the issues related to the protection of women’s rights cannot be efficiently addressed outside the context of the family, which is the basis of the society. Andrei Dapkiunas stressed that specific challenges that the middle income countries are facing should be among the priorities of UNDP and its member states.

The head of Belarus’ mission to the UN reminded the participants of the upcoming 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl accident and emphasized that UNDP plays an important role in coordinating the international cooperation on Chernobyl. According to Andrei Dapkiunas, Minsk will host an international high-level conference on the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster. The Belarusian representative also welcomed the intention of Ms Helen Clark to participate in the event.

Andrei Dapkiunas drew attention of the participants to Belarus’ “integration of integrations” initiative that seeks to promote a mutually beneficial and equal dialogue between regional economic integration entities. The Permanent Representative added that at the 2015 UN Summit the President of Belarus underscored the critical importance of effective economic integration and cooperation for successful achievement of the SDGs. Belarus put forward concrete proposals in the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) to promote cooperation in the Eurasian region. The Belarusian representative invited UNDP to examine the possibility of its practical participation in the project to ensure sustainable universal development. 

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