At UN Tonga shares experiences on preserving marine diversity tackling noncommunicable diseases

“Tonga attaches great importance to Sustainable Development Goal 14 and believes it can be attained through set targets and indicators,” he said, adding that Tonga looked forward to the upcoming UN conference Goal 14 as an opportunity to see where the international community stands on the Organization’s efforts to preserve this precious resource, by, among others, build on existing successful partnerships and stimulate innovative and concrete new partnerships to advance the implementation of the Goal. Regarding the exploitation of biological diversity, he said that regulation of areas beyond national jurisdictions was yet to be realized. In accordance with the 2014 decision of Pacific Island Forum leaders, Tonga supported the ongoing process of preparatory meetings. He went on to say that Tonga pays close attention to the interaction of the ocean with climate matters, noting that it has signed and ratified the Paris Agreement. “We cannot face the challenges of climate change alone,” he emphasized. Calling attention to his country’s “clear and unambiguous” links to international peace and security, he called upon the Special Representative on Climate and Security, as well as the UN Security Council, to raise the issue in the necessary platforms. “Tonga is the third most vulnerable country in the world to the adverse impacts of climate change,” he said, stressing that their seriousness could not be underestimated. Noting that the maintenance of international peace and security would be determined by the issue of disarmament, he said the proliferation of weapons in all their forms not only threatened international peace and security, but demonstrated the sheer waste of financial resources. Those funds might be better spent on international sustainable development initiatives and improving people’s lives, he pointed out. Mr. Pohiva also laid out his country’s efforts to address the spread of non-communicable diseases. In that regard, it partnered with the wider Pacific community to host a special conference on the issue. At that meeting, delegations noted the rampant spread of non-communicable diseases throughout the region and considered actions to put a stop to it. read more