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Romania's permanent representative to the UN, Ambassador Ion Jinga, on Friday held a speech in the Security Council, in an open debate on "Maintaining International Peace and Security: Assessing the Impact of Natural Disasters Caused by Climate Changes on Peace and International Security," informs a press release sent to AGERPRES.

The meeting was chaired by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Dominican Republic, the country holding the presidency of the UN Security Council in January. Also participating were the foreign affairs ministers from Germany, Belgium, Indonesia, Hungary, Kuwait, Guatemala, Philippines, Haiti, the Minister of Climate Change Climate of Canada, the Secretary of State for the Commonwealth of Great Britain, the Minister of Economy, Public Service, Communication and Change of Fiji, state ministers from Somalia, Nicaragua and secretaries of state from Poland and the Maldives.

In his speech, the Romanian Ambassador recalled the consequences that climate change can have on international peace and security, stressing that although these are not immediate causes of conflict, they appear to be crises that can generate, over time, the same degree of threat to peace as conflicts do.

Voicing concern over the effects of climate change on vulnerable regions such as Sahel (Africa), Central Asia, the Middle East, the Caribbean or the Pacific Islands, he underscored that for, small island states this issue has become an existential one because of the rising ocean level and the increasingly more frequent hurricanes causung major natural disasters.

"Climate change has a direct impact on the number of displaced people, food insecurity, water scarcity, drought or rising sea and ocean levels. They can thus affect regional stability by generating political and diplomatic tensions between neighboring states, internal confrontations between farmers and breeders, and also large numbers of people moving from one area to another. According to a recent report by the World Bank, it is estimated that by 2050, 140 million people will be migrating to avoid the impact of climate disasters," said the Romanian diplomat .

Speaking about the importance of prevention and the development of resilience as a concrete solution to such threats, he gave as an example the event "Strengthening the Preparedness against Natural Disasters", organized by the Permanent Mission of Romania at the UN in early December 2018, with the participation of the secretary of state with the MAI (Minister of Internal Affairs), Raed Arafat.

Ambassador Ion Jinga reiterated our country's commitment to promoting the international legal framework developed under the auspices of the United Nations - Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, the Paris Agreement and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) - documents that makes climate change a priority for the organisation. He also reminded about Romania's participation in the COP24 (UNFCCC) meeting in Katowice (Poland) and the signing of the Ministerial Declaration on Forests and Climate and the Silesia Declaration on Solidarity and Just Transition.

While presenting how important is for Romania to solve humanitarian crises and counteract their effects on international security, he stated that: "In the context of Romania's participation in the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti, we could see that the main cause of the humanitarian crisis was generated by climate change. The Romanian representatives stayed with their friends in the Caribbean region, providing financial support to Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Kitts and Nevis immediately after the devastating hurricanes Irma and Maria."

While noticing, at the same time, the multidimensional nature of the causes of insecurity in the Sahel region, directly experienced during the two working visits he made in the area in 2018, the Romanian diplomat underlined that, as Chairman of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC), Romania had the initiative to propose as topic for the joint PBC-ECOSOC meeting "The linkages between climate change and challenges to peacebuilding and sustaining peace in Sahel".

The topic, which was accepted by consensus by the ECOSOC and PBC member states, was discussed at the joint meeting of the two UN bodies on November 13 2018. Also, part of the commitment to promoting peace and sustainable development through an inclusive approach, Romania has recently joined the Climate and Security Friendship Group, recently established by the UN, in New York. AGERPRES (RO - editor: Alic Mirza; EN - author/editor: Cristina Zaharia)

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