The Arab Group for the Protection of Nature Occupies the Committee on World Food Security | The Arab Group for the Protection of Nature
العربية لحماية الطبيعة تنجح بفرض أولوياتها و بقوة على لجنة الأمن الغذائي العالمي في روما

Local organization The Arab Group for the Protection of Nature (APN) made a massive impact last week in Rome at the 42nd Plenary of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS).

A delegation of three was sent to coordinate and participate in meetings and events relevant to food security and nutrition, representing the interests of civil society from the Arab region. APN and delegates from partnering organizations were active and vocal throughout the week-long sessions to ensure that the issues of occupation and conflict remained high on the agenda of this UN forum.

The highlight of the trip was the CFS endorsement of the Framework for Action on Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises, which took place on Tuesday. APN has worked diligently for the past three years negotiating with states on behalf of civil society towards the adoption of this progressive framework, aimed at helping communities living in protracted crises such as occupation.

APN General Manager Mariam Aljaajaa spoke to delegates of member states and UN organizations in CFS plenary in support of the endorsement of the framework. She urged delegates to fully and urgently implement the principles of the framework, stressing the need to mobilize political commitment at all levels.As part of the week-long conference, APN organized a prominent side event, Framework for Action for Food Security and Nutrition in Protracted Crises: the Way Forward, to discuss the future of document, including how it can be effectively implemented.

Convened by APN President Razan Zuayter, the event featured several distinguished speakers, including Kostas Stamoulis, Director, Strategic Programme Leader – Food Security and Nutrition, FAO; Elizabeth Kvitashvili, Mission Director, USAID; Dominique Burgeon, Strategic Programme Leader – Resilience, FAO; Willem Olthof, Development Adviser, Delegation of the EU to the Holy See, to the Order of Malta and to the UN Organisations in Rome; Arif Husain, Chief Economist and Deputy Director of Analysis & Trends  Service (OSZA), WFP; Karim Hussein, Policy and Research Adviser at IFAD; and Nazareno Montani Cazabat and Khaled El-Taweel, Alternate Permanent Representatives of Argentina and the Arab Republic of Egypt, respectively. The event attracted a large number of participants from a wide range of organizations eager to engage in the implementation process.

On Thursday, Aljaajaa spoke to the CFS plenary during the special event Resilience building for sustainable food security and nutrition. She warned delegates of the dangers of focusing on resilience to crises alone, and urged them to shift their focus away from coping with crises to ending them.Advocacy Officer Heather Elaydi also spoke to delegates in plenary promoting the recognition of the links between the human right to water and the human right to food, highlighting the detrimental actions of occupying states and the vulnerability of communities living in protracted crises. The final Water for Food Security and Nutrition decision, endorsed on Wednesday, included an-APN proposed statement that states should refrain from using water as an instrument of political or economic pressure.

In the run up to the 42nd CFS, APN participated heavily in the Civil Society Mechanism (CSM) Forum, where Zuayter, the outgoing Coordinating Committee member representing West Asia, and Aljaajaa, the incoming Coordinating Committee member for the region, were both plenary speakers on the topics of current affairs and resilience to an audience of 210 representatives of civil society organizations from around the world. APN also organized and hosted two successful workshops for civil society delegates, on Protracted Crises and Resilience for food security and nutrition.

Earlier last week, APN delegates had the opportunity to meet the incoming Chair of the CFS, HE Ambassador Amira Gornass from Sudan, who expressed her interest in communities in protracted crises, and reaffirmed her hope to see the implementation of the Framework for Action by CFS member states.