Nicosia, 13th June 2016 – The new Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) and Head of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), Elizabeth Spehar, has arrived in Cyprus to formally assume her duties. Ms.
“The current political situation in Cyprus creates many obstacles to the exercise of cultural rights”, said United Nations human rights expert Karima Bennoune at the end of her first fact-finding mission to Cyprus.
UNFICYP joined the wider UN family on 30 May 2016 to mark the International Day of Peacekeepers (officially commemorated on 29 May), when we pay tribute to the men and women who have paid the ultimate price in the service of peace under the UN flag.
The confidence that the world places in United Nations peacekeeping is reflected in its massive growth in recent years, in terms of both numbers and complexity. Fifteen years ago, the UN had fewer than 40,000 military and police personnel.
Last Saturday, the bicommunal Peace Works Children & Youth Festival held in the buffer zone showcased the great solidarity between civil society organisations as well as groups engaged in peacebuilding and peace education in Cyprus.
More than 200 children participated in a bi-communal ‘Education for a Culture of Peace’ event on 7 May at the Ledra Palace Hotel organised by the Post Research Institute and the Association for Historical Dialogue and Research and funded by the European Union.
From 5-6 May 2016, Ms. Ingibjorg Solrun Gisladottir, UN Women’s Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia and Representative to Turkey, undertook a visit to Cyprus to lend her organisation’s support to local efforts to promote women’s rights on the island.