Remarks by Luis Abinader Corona, President of the Dominican Republic, at the Security Council Meeting on Climate Change and Food Insecurity.

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February 13, 2024

Luis Abinader Corona, President of the Dominican Republic, warned that according to recently published scientific research, the system regulating temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean is approaching a “devastating” inflection point, due to melting Arctic glaciers — implying that the sea level would rise by one metre in some regions, flooding many coastal cities, as is already happening in the Caribbean.

Noting that climate vulnerabilities and food shortages increase the risk of violence — especially where poverty, hunger and inequality prevail — he condemned the alarming, unjustifiable use of hunger as a weapon of war.  Unfortunately, this atrocious practice spreads across the planet every year.  While the Council has debated strong responses to this crime, it must intensify its actions.

He recalled that according to the World Food Crises Report 2023, some 258 million people faced acute levels of hunger in 58 countries or territories in 2022, and the number of people living with hunger increased by 146 per cent.  One of those countries is Haiti, with which the Dominican Republic shares an island.  According to the WFP, he noted, almost half of the population — 5 million people — suffers from acute food insecurity.  This is largely due to violent criminal gangs that deliberately hinder access to humanitarian aid and to climate phenomena that cannot be properly addressed and prevented by Haitian authorities due to terrorist violence and institutional breakdown.

Citing the Multinational Security Support Mission in Haiti, an arms and ammunition embargo and a sanctions regime, he stressed that the Council has not acted forcefully enough nor given the mission the robustness that the sanctions regime requires.  The international community must not allow this catastrophe to continue one day more.

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