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General Assembly

  •  October 23, 2020 
A “permanent” cease-fire is reached in Libya; Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York City declines to meet with the president of the UN General Assembly; and what’s going on behind closed-door meetings at the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization. Greetings from This Week @UN, highlights of the most important news on the world …
  •  October 22, 2020 
By all accounts, 2020 has been a terrible year so far — but is it worse than 1920? In 1920, World War I, which killed 16 million people, had just ended. The two-year influenza pandemic that followed killed 50 million more. In 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic has already killed more than one million people …
  •  October 3, 2020 
President Carlos Alvarado Quesada of Costa Rica
The annual debate of world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly ended on Sept. 29, after a weeklong screening of prerecorded video speeches by 190 member states. The numbers were impressive: videos by 102 heads of state, 1 vice president, 55 heads of government, 1 deputy prime minister and 26 ministers. Startling, however, …
  •  October 2, 2020 
The 25th anniversary of the landmark global action plan that was adopted to expand the equality and rights of women and girls was jinxed from the start. The celebratory event, long scheduled for March, was hastily postponed as the Covid-19 virus spread. When the commemoration finally took place on Oct. 1, it was virtual, with …
  •  September 26, 2020 
Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India accused the United Nations of failing to update its work and adopt overdue reforms in his speech to the General Assembly’s 75th-anniversary session, on Sept. 26. He praised what he saw as India’s leading role in the world on many fronts and asked, in a focus of his …
  •  September 25, 2020 
Fake news alert: President Donald Trump said something vaguely positive about the United Nations during his speech marking the opening of this year’s General Assembly session. “God bless you all. God bless America. And God bless the United Nations,” Trump intoned on Sept. 22. Comically, the world body may justifiably be relieved, having braced …
  •  September 24, 2020 
President Stevo Pendarovski of North Macedonia
The first-ever virtual General Assembly session has been full of both challenges and opportunities: the risks of technical problems were high (and some have happened), but the opportunities for global leaders to stand out individually in their pre-recorded video speeches turned out to be greater than speaking in the cavernous General Assembly Hall. While …
  •  September 23, 2020 
A pre-recorded statement from Bosnia and Herzegovina’s President Sefik Dzaferovic kicked off Day 2 of the 75th General Assembly, and like many other world leaders, he called for heightened multilateralism amid today’s pandemic and global conflicts. Simultaneously, for the first hour of the day, a Unicef-sponsored virtual event about protecting future generations from the …
  •  September 22, 2020 
President Donald Trump
Donald Trump, speaking on the opening day of the United Nations’ 75th General Assembly session — the same day that the United States officially tallied a coronavirus death toll of 200,000 people — reiterated all his familiar grievances against China and added a few. He blamed the Chinese not only for spreading Covid-19 across …
  •  September 21, 2020 
President Trump failed to deliver an expected video speech for the United Nations’ 75th anniversary commemoration. Instead, the acting deputy United States ambassador addressed the ceremony live from UN headquarters. From Washington, Secretary of State Michael Pompeo announced new sanctions against Iran during the UN anniversary remembrance, flanked by the US ambassador to the UN, …
  •  September 16, 2020 
The General Assembly is surely going to be a very interesting place this month — even if world leaders are staying home for the annual opening debate because of the pandemic. On Monday, Sept. 21, the General Assembly is hosting a special session to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the United Nations. For this …
  •  September 12, 2020 
Iran continues to enrich low-grade uranium; the United Nations finally sent peacekeepers to protect Dr. Denis Mukwege, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, after he received more death threats; and the major General Assembly session of world leaders, starting Sept. 22, features only 11 women so far, and the first one to speak is No. …
  •  September 10, 2020 
President Zuzana Caputova of Slovakia
The first woman scheduled to speak at this year’s opening session of the United Nations General Assembly is 53rd on the list of about 119 heads of state — President Zuzana Caputova of Slovakia — delivering her remarks on Sept. 23. The day before, the first of the big gathering, will not feature any …
  •  July 10, 2020 
In a final straw to the current troubles between the World Health Organization and the United States, the Trump administration notified United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on July 6 of its withdrawal from the agency, effective July 6, 2021. But the story may not be over, as Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, tweeted: …
  •  June 26, 2020 
Starting in June, a summary of the most important news on the United Nations’ work in New York City and worldwide will be highlighted weekly. The news will be drawn from the UN spokesperson’s briefings, our original reporting and other sources. We welcome your feedback on the new series, called This Week @UN. This …

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