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Highlights and images for 18 May 2023

UN Headquarters

View of the UNGA hall during the opening session

View of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) hall during the opening session

The High-Level Meeting of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on the Midterm Review of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 opened on Thursday. After an opening segment, delegates adopted a Political Declaration on the Midterm Review aimed at advancing action on disaster risk reduction.

Want to dig deeper? Read the full Earth Negotiations Bulletin daily report.

View of the dais during the opening session

View of the dais during the opening session

UNGA President Csaba Kőrösi expressed the need for urgency in government actions. “Conventional solutions are not enough, nor are scaled up conventional solutions”, he said adding that “We need a radical change in how we define and address risks.”

Csaba Kőrösi, President of the UN General Assembly (UNGA)

UNGA President Csaba Kőrösi

Katalin Éva Veresné Novák, President of Hungary, described the success of the Hungary Helps Programme providing assistance to 54 countries for disaster risk reduction. Mark Anthony Phillips, Prime Minister, Guyana highlighted the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) regional strategy and framework to strengthen disaster risk governance on disasters through coordination and collaboration.

Siaosi 'Ofakivahafolau Sovaleni, Prime Minister of Tonga, highlighted the regional 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent. Mutale Nalumango, Vice President, Zambia, called for international support from development partners in the implementation of relevant sustainable development policies and, as Chair of the African Group, expressed interest in constructive arrangements for addressing loss and damage at the 28th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 28) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

In a day-long plenary session, delegates shared views on actions for advancing implementation on disaster risk reduction. In their statements, they discussed progress to date on the Sendai Framework; the impact of recent crises; the use of data, science, and technology; early warning systems; linkages with other UN processes; multi-stakeholder involvement and collaboration; and solidarity between countries and communities, among other issues.

A unique Leaders' Roundtable was held over a formal lunch, enabling delegates to convene for informal dialogues on a range of select issues. Topics ranged from risk-informed investment and financing to comprehensive climate and disaster risk management, disaster risk reduction (DRR) in fragile settings, and the One Health approach.

Amina J. Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General

Amina J. Mohammed, UN Deputy Secretary-General

The UNDRR Disaster Risk Reduction Hub also reconvened, with a session dedicated to Early Warning for All. 

The Earth Negotiations Bulletin summary and analysis of the High-Level Meeting of the Midpoint Review of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction will be available on Monday, 22 May 2023 at https://enb.iisd.org/midterm-review-sendai-framework-disaster-risk-reduction.