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The UN General Assembly held a Special Session on follow-up to the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) Beyond 2014, marking the culmination of the ICPD 20-year review process to assess the status of implementation.

Speakers acknowledged great gains in poverty eradication and access to reproductive health care since the ICPD in Cairo in 1994, while calling for greater attention to tackling ongoing issues of inequality and discrimination.

icpd22 September 2014: The UN General Assembly held a Special Session on follow-up to the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) Beyond 2014, marking the culmination of the ICPD 20-year review assessing the status of implementation. Speakers acknowledged great gains in poverty eradication and access to reproductive health care since the ICPD in Cairo in 1994, while calling for greater attention to tackling ongoing issues of inequality and discrimination.

UN General Assembly President Sam Kutesa warned that poverty, discrimination and inequalities threaten economic growth, and called on delegates to urgently address the findings of the ICPD Beyond 2014 review, which show that many people still do not have their basic needs met. He also stressed the need for: lifelong learning; investment in building young people’s capabilities; strengthening health systems; eliminating inequalities in access to sexual and reproductive healthcare; planning for sustainable cities; improving urban-rural linkages; and factoring population dynamics into development planning at the national, regional and international levels.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on countries to: intensify efforts toward achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015; define a “bold and ambitious” post-2015 development agenda; and deliver a meaningful climate change agreement in 2015. Referring to the 1994 ICPD, he urged all concerned to “be guided by the wisdom of Cairo” in dealing with the demographic challenges of urbanization, migration, population aging, and the largest generation of young people in history.

Babatunde Osotimehin, Executive Director of the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), said sustainable development involves women’s empowerment and gender equality. He stressed the need to tackle issues of discrimination and violence.

According to UNFPA, the purpose of the Special Session was to renew political support for the Cairo mandate, and to highlight achievements and gaps in implementing the ICPD Programme of Action, as well priorities for future action, based on a recent global review of the agenda. In the course of the Session, UNFPA notes, more than 140 presidents, heads of government, ministers and high officials from around the world reaffirmed their countries’ strong political support to the ICPD, and agreed that the it was as relevant today as in 1994.

The UN Secretary-General’s February 2014 report on the framework of actions for follow-up to the Programme of Action of the ICPD Beyond 2014 calls for data collection that will enable the disaggregation of data by gender, age, minority status and wealth quintile, and permit analysis of regional and subnational trends. The report also proposes a monitoring framework with illustrative indicators grouped under the main themes of: ensuring dignity, human rights and non-discrimination for all; strengthening health systems to ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health; ensuring security of place and safe mobility; and strengthening global leadership and accountability. A color booklet version of the report was released prior to the UNGA Special Session. [UN Press Release] [UNGA President’s Remarks] [UN Secretary-General’s Remarks] [UNFPA Press Release] [ICPD Beyond 2014 Website] [Publication: Framework of actions for the follow-up to the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development beyond 2014: Report of the Secretary-General] [Meeting Summary]


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