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19 November 2010: DSG meets UN chiefs, staff from Arab region in Beirut

[Dateline: Beirut | Author: UNIC Beirut ]

Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro  and Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia  (ESCWA) Executive Secretary Rima Khalaf opened the 14th  Regional Coordination Mechanism  (RCM) meeting for UN agencies operating in Arab countries at the UN House in Beirut.

The meeting's multiple sessions provided an opportunity for the DSG to meet with many UN chiefs and staff based in Arab countries and to discuss a wide range of issues pertaining to integration and boosting effectiveness of UN work and programs in the region.

At the two-day meeting on 11-12 November, DSG Migiro said that the RCM was a pillar of the UN and recalled that it aimed at achieving policy coherence and creating synergies at the regional and sub-regional levels, thereby enhancing the global impact of the Organization’s work. 

“The focus of today’s agenda on youth and poverty reduction is very timely,” added the Deputy Secretary-General.

Executive Secretary Khalaf told participants that the complex challenges facing the region would without a doubt impact the way the UN works. “To be effective, we cannot pull ready-made policies from a handy toolkit. We have to be creative and enterprising to remain relevant. And we have to pool our resources by working effectively together to create a critical mass of innovative solutions to address the real needs of the region we serve," said Ms. Khalaf. She called for a change in work methods to ensure the uniqueness and vitality of the UN role in the region.

“It is our duty to prepare our youth for a more dignified and fulfilling life, and to create an enabling environment that provides them with better opportunities. Whether the increase in the youth population will turn out to be a curse or a blessing depends on us,” she said. 

The RCM aims at promoting strategic coordination and information sharing at the regional and sub-regional levels among UN entities and other regional and sub-regional partners. The emphasis of this year’s meeting is on enhancing multi-stakeholder engagement both within the UN system and between the UN and strategic regional stakeholders in addressing the development challenges of the youth. 

The opening session was attended for the first time by Lebanon's Prime Minister Saad Hariri and by many members of the diplomatic corps in Beirut.  DSG Migiro and a delegation of UN officials also met with Lebanese President Michel Sleiman and briefed him on the RCM meeting and other issues of mutual interest.