• General Assembly

    UN Budget Committee O.K.’s Major Reform of the UN, as Peacekeeping Is Squeezed

    by  • July 1, 2018 • General Assembly, Secretary-General, UN Peacekeeping, US-UN Relations • 

    The United Nations has been given the green light from its 193 member nations to embark on a major overhaul of its operations, based on a trio of reform proposals put forth by Secretary-General António Guterres in the last year and recently agreed on by delegates. The changes — primarily affecting the world body’s...

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    The UN Secretary-General’s Human-Rights Crisis Can Be Solved

    by  • June 26, 2018 • General Assembly, Human Rights, Secretary-General, WORLDVIEWS • 2 Comments

    There is a crisis in the United Nations human-rights system. Secretary-General António Guterres can lead the way out of it. Indeed, the world continues to look to the UN secretary-general to stand up for the principles of the organization. One of the highest responsibilities of the incumbent is to help steer a course toward...

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    Why Israel Dropped Out of the UN Security Council Race: Not Enough Votes

    by  • May 28, 2018 • General Assembly, Geopolitics, Middle East, Security Council • 

    From the start, it was a closely watched contest pitting Germany, Belgium and Israel against one another for their regional bloc’s two seats in the next term on the United Nations Security Council. Israel has never held a seat on the Council, and as it celebrates its 70-year membership in the UN in 2018, the...

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    With UN Security Council Reform, Bigger Is Not Better

    by  • March 28, 2018 • General Assembly, Peace and Security, Security Council, UN Peacekeeping, WORLDVIEWS • 

    Much ado — during 25 years of fruitless negotiations — has been made about the need for the United Nations General Assembly to achieve more equitable geographical representation in the UN Security Council. Article 23(1) of the UN Charter, however, also requires the Assembly, in electing the nonpermanent members of the Council, to pay...

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    Nikki Haley’s Trip to Central America: Moving Closer to US Friends but Not on Migration

    by  • March 14, 2018 • General Assembly, Human Trafficking, Nikki Haley Watch • 

    Guatemala and Honduras were two of the nine countries that Nikki Haley invited to her “friends of the US” party in January for casting a no vote on a United Nations resolution negating the decision by President Trump to move the American embassy to Jerusalem. (The resolution was passed overwhelmingly, but countries that abstained...

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    Trump and Haley, Desperately Seeking Retribution

    by  • December 21, 2017 • General Assembly, Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Nikki Haley Watch • 1 Comment

    Unable to win converts with fake facts, Nikki Haley has turned to threats to persuade her fellow United Nations diplomats to support her boss’s incendiary foreign policy. Haley tested this novel approach to counter a General Assembly vote on Dec. 21 aimed at pressuring President Trump, the fellow who appointed her as his UN...

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    Guterres’s Grand Plan to Remake the UN’s Peace and Security ‘Pillar’

    by  • October 20, 2017 • General Assembly, Geopolitics, Secretary-General, US Foreign Relations, US-UN Relations • 

    António Guterres, the UN secretary-general

    Considerable restructuring of the peacekeeping, political affairs and peace-building departments of the United Nations is being proposed by Secretary-General António Guterres as he continues to embark on reforming the world body, which contends with increasingly complex crises and conflicts each year. In a 16-page document obtained by PassBlue and to be submitted soon to the UN’s...

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    Canada’s Trudeau Uses the UN to Apologize to His Country’s Indigenous People

    by  • September 21, 2017 • General Assembly, Nuclear Disarmament, UNGA72 • 

    One of the biggest criticisms lodged against Justin Trudeau, the prime minister of Canada, has been his lack of commentary on the country’s history with its indigenous people of its First Nations, Métis and Inuit populations. In what could be considered a daring move, Trudeau used his time at the General Assembly podium to...

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    Trump Blows Up the UN, Metaphorically Speaking

    by  • September 19, 2017 • General Assembly, Middle East, Migration, Peace and Security, Refugees, Terrorism, UNGA72, US Foreign Relations, US-UN Relations • 

    Can a rebuttal happen before an event occurs? United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres took pre-emptive strikes against President Donald Trump in his speech at the opening session of the 72nd General Assembly, on Sept. 19, 2017. Rumors were rampant that Trump would deliver a strongly nationalistic speech, reportedly written by Stephen Miller, author of...

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    Trump to Force UN Reform Agenda at General Assembly Session in September

    by  • August 30, 2017 • General Assembly, Secretary-General, UNGA72, US Foreign Relations, US-UN Relations • 

    The United States is planning to hold a high-level meeting on United Nations reform during the opening days of the 72nd General Assembly debate. The Sept. 18 meeting is to be chaired by Donald Trump and held a day before he is scheduled to address the UN for the first time as America’s president in...

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    UN Chief Asks All Nations to Sign New Pact Protecting Women

    by  • August 21, 2017 • Africa, Asia, Gender-Based Violence, General Assembly, Secretary-General, UN Peacekeeping, Women • 

    Haunted by accumulating reports of sexual exploitation and abuse of women and girls by United Nations peacekeepers and others attached to UN missions around the world, Secretary-General António Guterres is taking the bold, unprecedented step of asking all governments to sign a compact pledging to prevent and stop these violations. The compact is voluntary...

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    At Swearing-In, António Guterres Pledges Gender Parity at the UN

    by  • December 12, 2016 • General Assembly, Secretary-General, US-UN Relations, Women • 

    António Guterres was sworn in as the ninth United Nations secretary-general on Dec. 12 in a low-key ceremony played out in the General Assembly Hall, featuring moving tributes by ambassadors to the 10 years that Ban Ki-moon has led the UN, a job he hands to Guterres on Jan. 1. Among other remarks, Guterres...

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    UN Depository Libraries Are Facing Severe Problems

    by  • November 17, 2016 • General Assembly, WORLDVIEWS • 

    BERLIN — Since 1946, the United Nations Depository Library Program — consisting now of more than 360 depository libraries in more than 130 countries — has provided scholars, journalists, politicians, diplomats and the broader public with access to what is called the “UN deposit.” That is, print copies of UN documents (official texts of...

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    Being UN Deputy Secretary-General: Louise Fréchette Recounts Her Experience

    by  • November 12, 2016 • General Assembly, US-UN Relations, Women • 

    Louise Fréchette, a Canadian, was the first United Nations deputy secretary-general. Appointed by Kofi Annan, she took office in March 1998, bringing to the job qualifications that exceeded those of most UN secretaries-general. She had spent a quarter-century in the Canadian foreign service, including as ambassador to several Latin American counties and to the...

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    Ban Ki-moon’s Turbulent UN Years, in His Own Words

    by  • September 21, 2016 • General Assembly, Secretary-General, Security Council • 2 Comments

    Ban Ki-moon receives the Seoul Peace Prize in South Korea on Oct. 29, 2012, with his wife, Yoo Soon-taek.

    With a cease-fire in Syria collapsing around him and bombs destroying precious relief supplies intended for the hungry, traumatized survivors of relentless government attacks on the once grand city of Aleppo, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon used his last speech to open a UN General Assembly debating season to lash out at the government...

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    Peter Sutherland, UN Migration Envoy, Says: Do Not Shirk the Refugee Crisis

    by  • September 14, 2016 • General Assembly, Human Rights, Migration, Refugees, UN Special Envoys • 

    As the special envoy to the United Nations secretary-general on international migration since 2006, Peter Sutherland, an Irishman, has minced few words on the topic of people leaving their homes in search of better lives. In his role at the UN, he advises the secretary-general on issues related to international migration and development and promotes...

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    A New Year at the UN: Getting Serious About Global Disorder?

    by  • September 12, 2016 • General Assembly, Migration, Refugees, UN-NY Relations, US-UN Relations • 

    Government leaders from around the world are gathering in New York for the opening on Tuesday of the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly, an event haunted by momentous crises demanding undivided attention and action from all member countries. Responses in both the General Assembly (whose powers are limited) and the Security Council...

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    Less Politics and More Transparency: What New Leadership Will Mean for the UN

    by  • July 6, 2016 • General Assembly, Secretary-General, UN Diplomats • 

    In a year when people who follow the United Nations are focusing on the election of the next secretary-general, the center of early action in that election has moved for the first time in history from the secretive deliberations of the Security Council to an unprecedented open campaign in the General Assembly, which normally...

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    The Field Grows and Shifts in the Race for UN Secretary-General

    by  • June 1, 2016 • General Assembly, Secretary-General, Security Council, Women • 

    The second crop of campaigners making a pitch to replace Ban Ki-moon in January is now being assembled, and it looks like the first declared candidate on the list may well shake up the race. She is Susana Malcorra, Argentina’s foreign minister and a well-respected, internationally known former United Nations official. The next round...

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    Civil and Polite, Nations Participate in First-Ever UN Security Council Election Hearings

    by  • May 25, 2016 • General Assembly, Security Council • 1 Comment

    Thailand said it had no enemies, while Kazakhstan pointed out it had voluntarily given up the fourth-largest nuclear arsenal in the world more than two decades ago. Sweden emphasized it was militarily nonaligned. Italy, the only Mediterranean candidate, said it could ensure geographic balance because it sits at the crossroads of the east and...

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