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Ban urges international community to mobilise resources, political will to fight extremism


United Nations- UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, on Wednesday, called on the international community to mobilise resources and political will to address extremism and terrorists’ activities around the world in 2015.

Ban made the call while addressing reporters at the UN Headquarters, where he recapped the year and expectations of 2015.

The UN, he said, would also continue to support the efforts of its member states in their fight against terrorism and extremism.

“We are working with Nigeria in its battle against Boko Haram, we are also working to strengthen Nigeria’s national capacity to battle extremism.

“In January, we will be organising a workshop in Nigeria in conjunction with the UN Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force (CTITF) to provide Nigeria with necessary policy support and spread in-depth knowledge of the strategy and wherever necessary, expedite delivery of technical assistance.

“The UN, through my High-Level Representative and the UN country team, will support the government of Nigeria in the area of humanitarian assistance.’’

According to him, the world body will also support Nigeria’s efforts against violent extremism and in capacity-building on international human rights and humanitarian law.

He said “an integral part of these efforts will be to ensure that counter-terrorism activities are carried out in accordance with international human rights standards and do not themselves fuel the radicalisation.’’

The secretary-general said that the primary goal of the workshop was to maximise each entity‘s comparative advantage.

This, he noted, would be done by helping member states to address those conditions that promote the spread of terrorism and take measures to prevent and combat terrorism.

He said measures to build states’ capacity to prevent and combat terrorism and to strengthen the role of the UN system would also be adopted to maximise member state entity’s comparative advantage among others.

Ban said the world in 2014 was gripped by a myriad of crises from West Africa’s Ebola outbreak and the dire threats posed by ISIL and other terrorist groups to ongoing conflicts in Syria and South Sudan.

On development, the UN chief called for inclusive, agile and coordinated action to usher in an era of sustainable development for all while presenting the General Assembly an advance version of the so-called “synthesis report”.

Ban said the report would guide negotiations for a new global agenda centred on people and the planet, and underpinned by human rights.

He called on member states to be “innovative, inclusive, agile, determined and coordinated” in negotiating the agenda that would succeed the landmark Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

The MDGs is the UN-backed effort to reduce extreme poverty and hunger, promote education, especially for girls, fight disease and protect the environment by 2015.

The UN chief said the year 2015 must be a global year for action.

He added that “in my travels this outgoing year, I have seen much suffering from Bangui to Gaza to the Dabaab, North Eastern Province in Kenya, refugee camps.

“I have met so many people whose lives are at risk, who are struggling to build better lives for themselves and their families.

“As we mark the 70th anniversary of the UN in 2015, we have a duty to answer the call of people across the world for shared prosperity and a sustainable future for all.’’

Meanwhile, UN officials had told reporters on Tuesday that Ban would travel to Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Mali, the Ebola-hit countries in West Africa on Wednesday, to raise awareness about the health crisis.

Ban is to take stock of international efforts to beat back the world’s worst outbreak of the disease, which has left more than 6,800 people dead. (NAN)

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