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Modi, Ban discuss trust issues in climate change negotiations

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

United Nations: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and UN General Secretary Ban Ki Moon met in order to discuss issues regarding building trust in climate change negotiations, which emerged as a dominant concern for achieving the anti-global warming component of the UN sustainable development goals (SDG).

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, of India, addresses the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, at U.N. headquarters, Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, of India, addresses the 69th session of the United Nations General Assembly, at U.N. headquarters, Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Modi raised the issue of “trust deficit” with developed countries. He pointed out the fact that these countries appear to use the climate issue to keep the developing countries from improving their living standards under the pretext of controlling carbon emissions, according to Vikas Swarup, the External Affairs Ministry spokesman.

Making a call for climate justice, Modi said that developing countries should be allowed to develop and condemn placing restrictions and controls on development.

Positive measures like concessional financing of climate change projects and transfer of technology were needed to promote sustainable development instead of negative ones that focus on capping carbon emissions, he said.

Ban appeared to recognise these concerns. “The Secretary-General emphasised the need for climate change finance as a key to building trust between developed and developing countries,” according to a statement by Ban’s spokesperson.

He spoke of the tremendous importance of India’s role in renewable energy, and urged Modi to continue to show strong global leadership on this issue, the statement said.

Modi spoke of the goal of developing 175 gigawatts of renewable energy by 2022.

UN peacekeeping operations in which India was historically the largest troop contributor was another important topic in their discussions. While Ban “commended India for its indispensable contribution to UN peacekeeping,” Modi said the manner in which the Security Council operated in mandating missions should be changed and it should consult the troop contributing countries.

Ban commended India’s “influential role” supporting the democratic transitions in Sri Lanka and Nepal, the UN statement said.

During his meeting with Ban that preceded his speech to the summit on sustainable development, Modi presented Ban with a book– ‘India and the United Nations: A Photo Journey, 1945 to 2015’ edited by Asoke Kumar Mukerjee, India’s Permanent Representative.

Climate change also featured in Modi’s meeting with World Bank President Jim Yong Kim when they discussed the UN sustainable development goals.

Modi said that the 17 sustainable development goals matched programmes already launced in India, Swarup said. Modi cited the plan for 175 gigawatts of renewable energy, the massive programme for sanitation and cleaning the Ganga as examples of matches with the SDG.

Jim said that Modi’s reforms had an impact on India and the nation’s strong performance was very different from that of many countries, according to Swarup.

Modi said that the governance of global organisations like the World Bank have to be strengthened and made more representative.

India was not adequately represented in the governance of the World Bank, Modi told him.

 

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A Majority of Children Die Due to Lack of Basic Healthcare Facilities: UN

For children everywhere, the most precarious time is the first month of life

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Children
A malnourished child lies in a bed waiting to receive treatment at a therapeutic feeding center in a hospital in Sana'a, Yemen, Jan. 24, 2016. (VOA)

An estimated 6.3 million children died before their 15th birthdays in 2017, or one every five seconds, mostly due to a lack of water, sanitation, nutrition and basic healthcare, according to report by United Nations agencies on Tuesday.

The vast majority of these deaths – 5.4 million – occur in the first five years of life, with newborns accounting for around half of the deaths, the report said.

“With simple solutions like medicines, clean water, electricity and vaccines” this toll could be dramatically reduced, said Laurence Chandy, an expert with the U.N. children’s fund UNICEF. But without urgent action, 56 million children under five – half of them newborns – will die between now and 2030.

Globally, in 2017, half of all deaths in children under five were in sub-Saharan Africa, where one in 13 children died before their fifth birthday. In high-income countries, that number was one in 185, according to the report co-led by UNICEF, the World Health Organization and the World Bank.

Children
UN: A Child Dies Every Five Seconds, Most Are Preventable Deaths. Pixabay

It found that most children under five die due to preventable or treatable causes such as complications during birth, pneumonia, diarrhoea, neonatal sepsis and malaria. Among older children – aged five to 14 – injuries become a more prominent cause of death, especially from drowning and road traffic.

For children everywhere, the most precarious time is the first month of life. In 2017, 2.5 million newborns died in their first month, and a baby born in sub-Saharan Africa or in Southern Asia was nine times more likely to die in the first month than one born in a high-income country.

Also Read- NASA Celebrates Its 60th Anniversary

Despite these problems, the U.N. report found that fewer children are dying each year worldwide. The number of under five deaths fell to 5.4 million in 2017 from 12.6 million in 1990, while the number of deaths in five to 14 year-olds dropped to under a million from 1.7 million in the same period. (VOA)