Recent Posts

What Now, António?

António Guterres soon will be recrowned Secretary-General after Manhattan’s five-member Electoral College, the permanent members of the Security Council, send its recommendation to the General Assembly for a ceremonial vote. In 2016, his election was an unusually transparent process — at least by United Nations standards — with contenders vetted by the General Assembly; the …

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Linda Thomas-Greenfield

Turnabout in US Foreign Policy Puts UN in the Spotlight

After four years of wandering lost in the desert, diplomacy is finding its way back to Washington. With Joe Biden in the Oval Office, “America First” is out and “multilateralism,” “cooperation” and “alliance” are no longer dirty words. Washington is once again embracing longtime allies, blowing kisses at the United Nations, touting NATO and the …

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Ghana Delegation at the UN on June 11, 2011

Major UN Elections; Guterres Crosses One Finish Line; Long Working Hours Can Kill You

The Ghana delegation posing outside the United Nations General Assembly Hall, June 11, 2021, after the Assembly voted on Security Council members for the 2022-23 term. Besides Ghana, the others are Albania, Brazil, Gabon and United Arab Emirates. They succeed Estonia, Niger, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Tunisia and Vietnam. JOHN PENNEY Major United Nations …

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President Emmanuel Macron of France and President Paul Kagame of Rwanda

A Peacemaker Revolts; Gaza in Ashes; the UN Security Council Moves Back Home

Grass-roots activists know peace-building best; Gaza reconstruction goals begin; the UN Security Council returns home. You are reading This Week @UN, summarizing the most pressing issues facing the organization. The information is gathered from UN press briefings, PassBlue reporting and other sources. Scoop from Stéphanie Fillion: A new candidate, Patrick U. Petit, an international mediator living in …

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A Top German Court Toughens the Nation’s Climate Goals, Requiring Explicit Details

In September 2016, the German parliament unanimously adopted the Paris Agreement. The government then translated Germany’s commitments under the agreement into a Climate Protection Law, which was approved by the Bundestag in November 2019 with a wide majority, making Germany the first country in the world with a greenhouse gas neutrality plan. By 2030, carbon …

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Séverine Autesserre

‘Peace Inc.’ Has Failed. This Expert Proposes a New Way to Peacemaking

Séverine Autesserre, a former humanitarian-aid worker, award-winning researcher and professor of political science at Columbia University, has become one of the foremost thinkers on international peace-building in the last decade. Following “Peaceland,” a book critically exploring the parallel worlds of United Nations peacekeeping missions, and “The Trouble With the Congo,” which examines the failed peace efforts in …

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Is Combating Sexual Abuse in the UN Now a Low Priority for Guterres?

LONDON — On taking his oath of office in December 2016, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres listed four priorities for his new job, the first combating sexual exploitation and sexual abuse across the UN system. In contrast, Guterres’s recent vision statement presented to the UN’s 193 member states as part of his candidacy for another …

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