Minister for International Development Pekka Haavisto visited Geneva on 22 April. The purpose of the visit was to meet leaders of the key UN humanitarian aid agencies, and to discuss mediation and fragile states.
During his visit, Haavisto met United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres, and Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator in the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Kyung-wha Kang. The discussions focused particularly on the most serious crisis situations of the moment - South Sudan, the Central African Republic, Syria - and the mutual cooperation between UN agencies. With Guterres, Haavisto discussed also observation of refugees with disabilities in the work of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).
In Geneva, Haavisto met also Director General of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Guy Ryder, with the focus on the organisation’s work concerning fragile states, and Executive Director of the mediation organisation Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue David Harland. The Minister for International Development chaired a debate on peacebuilding in fragile states in Africa. Haavisto currently acts as co-chair of the International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding (IDPS). The network brings together fragile states, donors and civil society actors.
Ministry for Foreign Affairs, press release 94/2014, 17.4.