A high-level European Union delegation is in New York for the 74th United Nations General Assembly this week.
For the 74th session of the UN General Assembly, the EU will focus on conflict prevention, peace and security; a common positive agenda with the promotion and protection of human rights at the heart of multilateralism; as well as an expanding global engagement on issues such as climate action, the environment, sustainable development goals, and the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
The EU representatives will host and participate in a large number of events and meetings with world leaders. The EU continues to be a leader in global cooperation: joining forces with partners in support of multilateralism to uphold and promote international law and human rights, to support peace and democracy, to promote sustainable development and to stand side-by-side with people in need all over the world.
First Vice-President Frans Timmermans and High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini kick-offed the week on Sunday, 22 September, with a bilateral meeting with UN Secretary General António Guterres, further strengthening the strategic EU-UN partnership.
On Monday, First Vice-President Timmermans and Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete will join the President of the European Council Donald Tusk at the UN Climate Action Summit following up on the EU’s commitments made under the Paris Agreement to cut emissions by at least 40% by 2030 and on the EU’s progress in developing a climate neutrality strategy. The Commission adopted a Communication last week detailing the EU’s contribution to the Summit.
On Tuesday, First Vice-President Timmermans together with Commissioner Neven Mimica will represent the EU at the first UN Summit on the Sustainable Development Goals since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda in 2015 to call for more ambitious and accelerated action to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
On Tuesday, First Vice-President Timmermans and High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini will join the President of the European Council Tusk for the opening of the General Debate of the 74th UN General Assembly.
The EU will host or co-host a number of flagship events in the margins of the General Assembly:
- On Monday, 23 September, High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini together with UNICEF will launch the global campaign for the 30th Anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child called #TheRealChallenge. In the afternoon, Commissioner Stylianides will co-host together with Belgium and UNICEF the event “Stop the war on children”.
- Between 22 and 24 September, Commissioner Karmenu Vella will represent the European Commission at the World Economic Forum’s Champions for Nature meeting, as well as other high-level events, showing the EU’s commitments to work on nature-based solutions to climate change, actions to halt and reverse biodiversity loss and address the link between oceans and climate change.
- On Tuesday, 24 September, the EU will host the sixth high-level event on the Syria crisis, chaired by High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini and Commissioner Christos Stylianides, reaffirming EU and international support to a political solution to the Syria conflict and address the humanitarian and resilience needs of those affected by the crisis inside Syria and across the region.
- Commissioner Stylianides will co-host an event on safeguarding the humanitarian space in the context of counterterrorism and sanctions regimes on Wednesday, 25 September, together with the Belgian Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders. On the same day, Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos will speak at the tenth Global Counter-Terrorism Forum Ministerial Plenary Meeting. The meeting will be an opportunity to take stock of the Forum’s efforts and achievements at international, national and regional level to prevent, combat and prosecute terrorist acts.
- On Thursday, 26 September, High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini will host, together with the High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet and the EU Special Representative for Human Rights Eamon Gilmore, a new edition of the Good Human Rights Stories initiative. This year the focus will be on building quality lives through economic, social and cultural rights in the world. High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini and Commissioner Neven Mimica will host an event on the EU-UN Spotlight Initiative, aimed at eliminating all forms of violence against women and girls.
EU representatives will have a full agenda of high-level debates and side events, as well as numerous bilateral meetings:
- On 22 September, the eve of the UN’s General Assembly week, Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis joined leaders at the Walk the Talk: The Health for All event organised by the World Health Organisation in Central Park. High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini will meet leaders from the Western Balkans over a working dinner.
- On 23 September, Commissioner Andriukaitis will represent the EU at the high-level meeting on Universal Health Coverage. The same day, the International Contact Group on Venezuela will convene to assess the latest developments and the situation in the country. Following this meeting, High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini will chair the traditional informal meeting of EU Foreign Affairs Ministers.
- Commissioner Andriukaitis will participate at a breakfast meeting on the 2019 Champions Strategy on Food waste on 24 September. In the evening, First Vice-President Timmermans, along with High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini, will open the annual EU reception.
- High Representative/Vice-President Mogherini, Commissioner Cecilia Malmström and Commissioner Pierre Moscovici will attend the Bloomberg Global Business Forum on 25 September.
- On 26 September, Commissioner Mimica will represent the EU at the High-Level Dialogue on Financing for Development, including a ministerial round-table discussion with the UN and pioneer countries on Integrated National Financing Frameworks to support the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. On the same day, Commissioner Avramopoulos will participate in a Ministerial side event focussing on accountability for atrocity crimes committed by DAESH.*
- On 28 September, Commissioner Mimica will take part in the post-Cotonou chief negotiators’ meeting on a new partnership agreement with 79 countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific. The future agreement will succeed the Cotonou Agreement.