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China’s UN Playground & Talking Gender With the UN’s Rosemary DiCarlo: Our Latest Episode


Rosemary DiCarlo, the UN Under Secretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs, in her office in the Secretariat building, New York, December 2019. DiCarlo, who is from Rhode Island in the United States, is the first person to lead the new department. JOE PENNEY

This year was a big one for China, and 2020 is likely to be much the same — if not more intense, given the range of issues involving the United States and far beyond. For our last episode of the year, UN-Scripted looks at how China’s rise internationally is reflected at the United Nations.

To do so, PassBlue reporter Stéphanie Fillion discusses two declarations that emerged from a UN committee in New York examining the human-rights situation of the Uighurs in the Chinese province of Xinjiang and the lobbying by China among the UN’s 192 other member states to shut any criticism down. The declarations — a Western-alliance one versus one led by Belarus — reveal how China’s investments in Africa, Central Asia, South Asia and elsewhere, initially sold as “no strings attached” development projects, may come with demands after all.

The statements also reveal the reluctance of a majority of UN member states to take a stance against China, especially on human rights. UN-Scripted also looks at China’s broader rise at the UN, from a recent envoy appointment to the Great Lakes region in Africa to the behavior of China’s new ambassador to the UN, Zhang Jun.

On the second part of the episode, you will hear from UN Under Secretary-General Rosemary DiCarlo, the head of the Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs and a US citizen, about her career, the challenges of including more women in peace talks and what it’s like to visit four countries in nine days. This half of the episode is drawn from an exclusive interview done by Joanne Myers with DiCarlo in November 2019.

To hear the full episode about China and DiCarlo, download PassBlue’s podcast, UN-Scripted, or go to Patreon, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, SoundCloud, Stitcher, TuneIn, iTunes or Google Play. — STÉPHANIE FILLION and KACIE CANDELA with research by Brianna Lyman

Stéphanie Fillion is a New York-based reporter specializing in foreign affairs and human rights who has been writing for PassBlue regularly for a year, including co-producing UN-Scripted, a new podcast series on global affairs through a UN lens. She has a master’s degree in journalism, politics and global affairs from Columbia University and a B.A. in political science from McGill University. Fillion was awarded a European Union in Canada Young Journalists fellowship in 2015 and was an editorial fellow for La Stampa in 2017. She speaks French, English and Italian.

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Kacie Candela is an assistant editor for PassBlue and a news anchor and reporter with WFUV, a public radio station in the Bronx, N.Y., where she covers the UN and other beats. Her work has won various awards from the New York State Associated Press Association, New York State Broadcasters Association, PRNDI, and the Alliance for Women in Media.

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