PM leaves Dhaka for Morocco to attend climate summit

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Dhaka, November 14: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday left Dhaka for Morocco on a three-day official visit to attend two high-level segments of the 22nd Conference of the Parties (COP-22) of UNFCCC popularly known as global climate summit.

COP-22 of the United Nation Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is being held at Morocco’s former imperial city Marrakech.

A VVIP flight (BG-1019) of Biman Bangladesh Airlines carrying the premier and her entourage members departed Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport for Marrakech at 10.15 am.

Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhit, Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu, Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Rashed Khan Menon, Minister for Road Transport and Bridges Obaidul Kader, chiefs of the services and high officials were present at the airport to see the Prime Minister off.

The flight is scheduled to land at Menara Airport in Marrakech at 4.30 pm local time today. On arrival, a ceremonial motorcade would escort her to Hotel La Mamounia where she will be staying during her visit to Morocco.

On Tuesday morning, the Bangladesh prime minister will attend the opening session of the High-level Segment of COP-22. In the afternoon she will deliver her statement at the joint high-level segment of COP-22, CMP 12 (12th Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol) and CMA 1 (1st Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement).

King of Morocco Mohammed VI, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa would receive the Prime Minister at the conference venue Bab lghli.

In her statement, the Bangladesh prime minister is expected to highlight Bangladesh’s position to address the climate challenges and urge global leaders to intensify a campaign to advance the national and collective efforts to address this immense challenge. Sheikh Hasina, along with other heads of state and government, will attend a lunch to be hosted by King of Morocco Mohammed VI on the same day.

Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali, Environment and Forest Minister Anwar Hossain Manju, Water Resources Minister Anisul Islam Mahmud and Deputy Minister of Environment and Forest Abdullah Al Islam Jacob, among others, will accompany the prime minister during her visit to Morocco.

COP-22, which began on November 7 and runs through November 18, is the first such meeting since the historic adoption of the Paris Agreement at COP-21 in December last year.

UNFCCC entered into force in 1994, aimed at reducing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere. The Conference of the Parties (COP) was designated as the supreme governing body of the Convention.

These countries meet once a year to evaluate the application of the Convention and develop the negotiation process between the Parties in front of new commitments.

To date, 195 countries have submitted their instruments of ratification of the Paris Agreement and COP 22 is expected to design modalities for execution of the historic agreement to address the looming challenges of global warming.

Sheikh Hasina is scheduled to return home on November 16.