MOSCOW, September 18 (RIA Novosti) - United Nations (UN) is focused on preventing displacement caused by natural disasters, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations Jan Eliasson said at a press conference on the launch of the report by the Norwegian Refugee Council's Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre, entitled "Global Estimates 2014: people displaced by disasters".
"This is a very important report from the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) and it helps us understand some of the most pressing global challenges, that is: how we better prevent, how we prepare for and, finally, find solutions to the displacement of millions of people caused by natural disasters each year," Eliasson said Wednesday at a press conference in New York, as quoted by the organization's official website.
Previewing the upcoming UN General Assembly debate and the side events preceding it, Eliasson said that "Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has asked world leaders next week to bring bold announcements and actions to the Climate Summit 23 September. Let us ensure that we include mechanisms for early warning and that we devise responses for those who have been displaced by disasters and climate change."
Signaling a new approach, Eliasson told reporters that "we need to shift our focus to prevention and preparedness in close cooperation with national partners. The timing is right for this change of approach. The world is gearing up to create a new post-2015 global development framework where poverty reduction and sustainable development are to be closely integrated. The coming negotiations present an opportunity to ensure that the needs of internally displaced persons are taken into account."
Eliasson concluded by putting hope in two forthcoming events, in Japan and Turkey. He said "in March next year, we will also have the third World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, to be hosted by Japan in the city of Sendai. This Conference will be a major opportunity to formulate our global action plan for responding to, and preventing disasters. We really need to work much harder in disaster risk reduction."
According to the report by the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre, "in 2013, IDMC estimates that 22 million people were displaced in 119 countries as a result of natural disasters. That is almost three times as many people who were internally displaced by conflict and violence in the same period."