| 2 October 2023, Monday |

Will Lebanon be global priority in New York meetings?

All lights are shed on the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly, which officially begins next Tuesday, and what may develop on the sidelines of its international or Arab-international meetings, particularly regarding the resolution of the Lebanese presidential crisis. One of the ideas being discussed is the convening of the Quint Committee in New York at the level of foreign ministers.

If it doesn’t convene at this level, it may be held at a lower level, and its convening or not will reveal the extent to which Lebanon is a priority on the world’s agenda.

Lebanon will be represented at the opening of the session by the Prime Minister of the caretaker government, Najib Mikati, leading a delegation that includes the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates, Abdullah Bou Habib, and the Minister of Health, Firas Al-Abiad. Lebanon is scheduled to deliver a speech on the 22nd of this month, which, according to diplomatic sources, underscores the importance of electing a new president for the Republic, Lebanon’s commitment to international resolutions, and its welcoming of the recent decision by the Security Council to renew UNIFIL for another year.

The session’s theme is “Rebuilding the 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals towards Peace, Progress, and Sustainability for All.” The Sustainable Development Goals represent a global call to action to eradicate poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. These goals must go hand in hand with economic growth strategies and address a range of social needs, including education, health, social protection, and job opportunities, while also addressing climate change and environmental protection.

In light of this, the focus of most United Nations bodies and forums in 2023 is the Development Agenda and related topics, including water issues, climate change, global warming, the economies of Southern countries, environmental and social crises, forced displacement issues, and the burdens placed on host countries, among others. Therefore, the Lebanese mission in New York is striving to align with the new working methodologies at the United Nations and emerging fields of development, which are of no less importance than political agendas. These issues transcend all files in the face of difficult living and economic conditions experienced globally, accompanied by natural disasters, food crises, rising poverty levels, and the expansion of poverty belts, all of which pose a threat to the security and stability of societies.
Moreover, during the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 78) in New York, there will be three high-level meetings on health-related topics, which are as follows:

Pandemic Preparedness and Response: Focus on preventing pandemics and enhancing preparedness and response capabilities.
Universal Health Coverage: Addressing the need for comprehensive healthcare access.
Tuberculosis (TB) Control: Discussing efforts to combat tuberculosis.
President Mikati will also meet with the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday, and he will hold meetings with various Arab and foreign leaders.

Furthermore, there will be a meeting on the sidelines of the session for Arab foreign ministers, attended by Foreign Minister Abdullah Bou Habib. He will hold discussions with his counterparts from around the world.

The international and Arab meetings on the sidelines of the session will provide an opportunity to discuss developments in Ukraine, the Middle East, and the Iran dossier.

  • Sawt Beirut International