We’re hearing claims of under-representation, a push from youth activists for the officials to recognize weaknesses in the current draft of the Colombo Declaration – namely, in environmental protection and accessibility issues. This is fueled partly by the IPCC’s latest findings – that the world’s tipping point maybe much closer than initially expected.
As you can see, there are discussions going on all over the place. We’ve seen the delegate from Saudi Arabia in particular voicing very strong concerns over unsolicited changes and priorities. In fact, there are rising tensions over the dilution of the strength of the document as delegates who were not present for negotiations in the previous day suddenly pull out the stops and say: “No, we do not like this statement.”
There is also a discreet #BRINGBACKOURGIRLS campaign in the midst of all this (for those not in the know, this is in response to the 200 young girls kidnapped in NIgeria). A protest march on this is apparently set to happen starting from the Boulevard lunch hall. Placards to this effect are being smuggled in and out.
The chair is now engaged in discussions with multiple delegates over duplicate entries and compromised language. There’s a lot of verbal sparring over the exact wording (which is to be expected: a single word may end up in massive repercussions later down the line if the UN adopts this). We’ve been reminded that taking photographs is not allowed, so henceforth, no photos on my part.
On disappointing thing we’ve seeing is a major lack of participation in this session by Sri Lankan youth delegates. One wonders why so many delegates from the host nation can’t be bothered to show up at this critical session and make their voices heard.