SECURITY COUNCIL PRESIDENCY

Security Council Presidency: Two Old Friends, France and Germany, Now Share an Office

As a united front in the fight to preserve the European Union, France and Germany are about to gain a global audience. During March and April, their top United Nations ambassadors, François Delattre and Christoph Heusgen, will take turns — in alphabetical order — presiding over the Security Council, marking the first time for twin Council … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

A Journey Into Terror and Truth: My Travels Alone in Afghanistan

ISHKASHIM, Afghanistan — I entered the country from the northeast, from Tajikistan, where I had been traveling for a month, researching the lives of women, as I have been doing across the world for years. From the small town of Khorog in Tajikistan, I hired a taxi to drive me to the border crossing. As … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

Authorities Find More Ways to Silence Women Human-Rights Experts

More than two decades have passed since the United Nations General Assembly approved the Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, which encourages countries to protect people who fight for human rights around the world. So why has the situation deteriorated, especially for women who defend human rights? Fears of terrorism and the rise of fundamentalism and … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

Another UN Harassment Case Quietly Disappears

Amid a busy December, when the United Nations was focusing on important conferences on climate change and migration and year-end holidays loomed, a case of harassment that never got the traction it arguably deserved ended in a traditional UN way: it disappeared. On Dec. 14, the chairman of the International Civil Service Commission, which regulates … Read more

 

A Record Year of Death and Demonization for Journalism Globally

After the savage murder of Jamal Khashoggi, major organizations monitoring the freedom and safety of journalists worldwide are reporting, albeit coincidentally, that 2018 has been an exceptionally dangerous year everywhere. The deaths of journalists have risen sharply, to 53 from 47 in 2017, the Committee to Protect Journalists announced on Dec. 19. “The recent uptick … Read more

UN Sanctions for Sexual Violence in Libya Approved, but Russia Resisted

A decision by the United Nations Security Council to add sanctions against perpetrators of sexual violence should have gone smoothly. The proposal, led by the Netherlands and Sweden, was meant to deter such violence in conflict zones and other hot spots. Weeks earlier, diplomats turned out in hordes to mark the 18th anniversary of a landmark … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

In Cambodia’s Single-Party Politics, Women Are Barely Seen

Chan Kanha, a member of the Cambodian People’s Party

KAMPOT, Cambodia — Chan Kanha is the deputy mayor for the Cambodian People’s Party in this small port town, which sits along Cambodia’s southern coast and still retains much of its French colonial architecture. The Cambodian People’s Party, or CCP, is led by Prime Minister Hun Sen, who has run the country for the last … Read more

The UK Flip-Flops on Gender Wording in UN Disarmament Discussions

Negotiations in the United Nations General Assembly’s First Committee, which concentrates on disarmament, caused a Twitter row late last week after wording on gender stirred up strong feelings between powerful nongovernmental organizations and Britain, surprising other countries as well. The committee’s informal consultations, as they are technically called, are currently focusing on updating an array … Read more

 

BOOKS

Mexico City, 1975: When the Year of the Woman Was Born

From 1975 to 1995, the United Nations sponsored four international conferences on women that produced wildly optimistic blueprints for concrete gains. Some people dismiss these forums and the programs for action that they generated as lacking strategies to carry them out. Others insist that the conferences raised awareness, shaped aspirations, fostered activism and, in countless … Read more

TAKE A LOOK

South Asian Health Care’s Dismal World Ranking

A health care worker in Pakistan

South Asia, a vast region stretching from Bangladesh to Afghanistan, has produced and exported respected medical professionals, research findings and innovations with universal reach. The poor record in domestic health care in almost every one of the seven countries in the region is a different story. The British medical journal The Lancet reopened discussion this … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

Six Steps to End Sexual Violence in War

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded this year’s Nobel Peace Prize to Nadia Murad, a human-rights activist from Iraq’s Yazidi minority, and to Denis Mukwege, a Congolese physician, for their fight against sexual violence as a weapon of war. On the one-year anniversary of the reporting that sparked the #MeToo movement, the committee’s recognition of … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

Rape in Peru: Stopping a Deadly Epidemic

Forty years is a long time to trek uphill, but Victoria Villanueva, the tireless leader of a campaign to raise the status of girls and women in Peru, remains undaunted. Now 83, she has been doing exactly this since 1978, the year she helped found Manuela Ramos, an organization that lobbies to reduce sexual violence … Read more

 

TAKE A LOOK

Hungary Forbids Gender Studies, Enraging Academics

In the doldrums of a European summer, when many universities are mostly closed or short-staffed, the populist Hungarian government of Prime Minister Viktor Orban sent a directive to higher-education institutions on Aug. 9 forbidding the teaching of gender studies. Hungarian academicians, faculties outside the country as well as civil society organizations reacted quickly, calling for … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

No Justice for Yazidi Women Yet: Why Not?

It has been four years since ISIS launched its genocidal assault on the Yazidi community in the Middle East. ISIS fighters have faced terrorism charges in Iraq and abroad, yet not a single ISIS fighter has been prosecuted for, much less convicted of, genocide. For the Yazidis, justice remains out of reach. In light of … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

Violence Against Women Worsens by the Day in the Congo

Justine Bihamba

The Democratic Republic of the Congo has been placed on the United Nations Security Council agenda for several decades, in one form or another through various peacekeeping missions. The Council regularly meets on the status of the Congo, with the most recent session occurring on July 26, 2018, concentrating on progress toward scheduled presidential and legislative … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

Backing Up Women With Facts and Figures

In 2001, a pair of academics at Brigham Young University in Utah aimed to identify data linking the status of women to the security and behavior of countries. Seventeen years later, what began as a single article has evolved into a vital, comprehensive global database, offering insights into women’s lives in 176 countries. Meet the WomanStats … Read more

 

UN to Rohingya: You Can’t Go Home Safely Any Time Soon

Among refugee advocates there  has been a growing concern that recent agreements among regional governments and the United Nations on a framework for mitigating the Rohingya crisis could prompt at least some of the million-plus people who have fled the deadly military pogrom in Myanmar to consider risking a return to try to rebuild their … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

The UN’s Emphasis on Prevention Could Use Lessons From the Case of Guinea

Historically neglected, gender-based violence is now becoming broadly recognized as a legitimate and urgent agenda item among the United Nations member nations, notably in the UN’s most powerful forum, the Security Council. But the future of the agenda is uncertain, as priorities remain unclear and inadequate methods for preventing sexual violence against women keep us … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

Nigerian Women in African Migration, Vulnerable and Abused

Barbie Latza Nadeau is an American journalist based in Rome, covering the large refugee migrations from the Middle East and Africa since 2011, often with an emphasis on women. She has recently written a book, “Roadmap to Hell: Sex, Drugs and Guns on the Mafia Coast,” zeroing in on a huge increase in the number … Read more

With Trump’s Human-Rights Policies, Religious ‘Values’ Take Priority

Cubans waiting to be served food during the country's annual celebration of its revolution.

For almost three centuries, through street protests, court battles and a civil war, the United States has sporadically but steadily advanced and expanded human-rights protections and commitments in domestic and foreign policies. Now Donald Trump and the most conservative, ideologically driven officials on his team want to turn back this record in fundamental ways, as … Read more

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