Bangladesh has called for enhanced international cooperation in tackling adverse impacts of climate change on labour, human rights and health.
“Climate change, labour, human rights and public health are all intertwined. A secure and sustainable world could be built through the proper implementation of the Paris Agreement and strengthening of international cooperation in the areas of climate finance, mitigation and adaptation,” said Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen in a virtual event on “Climate Change Priorities on Health, Human Rights and Labour” today.
The event was organised by the Permanent Mission of Bangladesh in Geneva under the auspices of the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF). Bangladesh is currently the president of the forum for the term 2020-22.
The foreign minister further highlighted the steps taken by Bangladesh under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to combat climate change. He apprised the international community of the “Mujib Climate Prosperity Plan” adopted on the occasion of the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
He called upon developed countries to extend necessary financial, technological, and technical assistance to countries affected by and at risk of climate change as well as global warming, and to work together to create a new special rapporteur on climate change and human rights in the UN Human Rights Council.
Among others, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO); Saima Wazed Hossain, Member of the WHO Expert Advisory Panel on Mental Health and CVF Thematic Ambassador for ‘Vulnerability’; Mohamed Nasheed, speaker and former president of the Maldives and CVF Thematic Ambassador for ‘Ambition’; Nada Al-Nashif, UN deputy high commissioner for Human Rights; Martha E Newton, deputy director-general of the International Labor Organization (ILO) and ambassadors and permanent representatives of Ethiopia, Italy, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and the Marshall Islands took part in the discussion.
Dr Tedros flagged the importance of preventing environmental degradation to ensure clean air, safe drinking water, food security, safe housing and health.
He said Covid-19 is a stark reminder of the delicate relationship between people and planet, which must be addressed with a “One Health” approach and meaningful climate actions.
He lauded the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in fighting climate change and strengthening health systems in Bangladesh along with her continued contribution as the co-chair of the “One Health Global Leaders Group on Antimicrobial Resistance”.
Saima Wazed Hossain shed light on the adverse consequences of COVID-19 and climate change on mental health of vulnerable communities.
She added that the impact of climate change on women, children and persons with disabilities will be critically felt in the areas of employment, human rights and public health.
Mustafizur Rahman, Permanent Representative and Ambassador of Bangladesh in Geneva moderated the webinar.