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Peace and Security

  •  April 18, 2013 
Isfahan market in Iran
WASHINGTON — If the term “track two” sounds like an announcement at Grand Central Terminal in New York, it has an altogether different meaning farther east at United Nations headquarters. Diplomats there suspect they’re hearing “track two” talks; that is, informal talks aimed at resolving problems, although the talks neither involve them nor any other …
  •  April 11, 2013 
Nyanzale refugee camp children
  For the first time, the United Nations Security Council has passed a resolution allowing UN troops to go on the offensive in a mission against armed rebels. The combat intervention brigade will operate as part of the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the northeastern region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (Monusco). …
  •  April 10, 2013 
MINURSO Monitors Ceasefire in Western Sahara
The saga of Western Sahara, a disputed territory that has been stuck in limbo in North Africa for decades, will receive its annual nod this month by the United Nations Security Council, but this time actual changes may be afoot if the council acts more decisively, particularly on human-rights matters. Christopher Ross, the UN …
  •  April 3, 2013 
Peter Woolcott, Australia ambassador to the UN
The momentous adoption of the Arms Trade Treaty at the United Nations has been greeted with much enthusiasm worldwide but also strong skepticism as the reality of carrying out its aim — regulating international transfers of conventional arms — sets in. “Effectiveness will be slow as it comes into force,” Peter Woolcott, the permanent …
  •  April 2, 2013 
Woman laying out leather
A new network of women academics from Australia and New Zealand is keeping a close eye on Australia’s new two-year term as an elected member of the United Nations Security Council. The academics have organized a collective to track how well the UN’s most powerful body and Australia itself adhere to the landmark Women, …
  •  March 20, 2013 
Afghan woman in a burqa, Kabul.
With the deadline for the departure of American and NATO troops from Afghanistan just a year away, civilian casualties in the country remain alarmingly high, says a new report from the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (Unama). Although the report said the number of casualties had decreased for the first time in six …
  •  March 14, 2013 
Security Council Meeting on the situation in Cyprus
The United Nations Security Council bases its resolutions on agenda items as varied as the renewal of a peacekeeping force mandate in Haiti to responding to a missile launching in North Korea. With resolutions’ language often dense legalese that recalls, recognizes, emphasizes, demands and, at times, condemns and deplores the issue at hand, the …
  •  March 13, 2013 
Mary Robinson of The Elders
Mary Robinson, a former president of Ireland, United Nations high commissioner for human rights and philanthropist, is said to be the main candidate for the new United Nations special envoy post for the Great Lakes region in central Africa. The area generally covers Burundi, northeastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Uganda and some …
  •  February 26, 2013 
Internally displaced people in Congo
Gold is now one of the most problematic conflict minerals in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, and United Nations Security Council sanctions on the illegal mining of natural resources, including gold, have done little to prevent smugglers from profiting, says a new report from a German foundation. The foundation, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, is …
  •  February 19, 2013 
The Mitrovica Bridge in North Kosovo is an iconic symbol of Kosovo's division. South of the Ibar River live Albanian Kosovars, while the land north of the Ibar is occupied by Serbian communities.
Thousands of people packed the streets of Pristina this past weekend, celebrating as Kosovo marked five years of independence. But in the municipalities of northern Kosovo, few people were rejoicing. Thirteen years after Slobodan Milosevic, the Serbian leader whose nationalist crusade set off the Balkan wars, withdrew his army from Kosovo, and three years …
  •  January 17, 2013 
Socotra Rock
KANDY, Sri Lanka — As the focus of global political and economic power shifts to the Asia-Pacific region and the United States feels compelled to pivot its strategic forces from the Atlantic to the Pacific, the relationship among major East Asian countries acquires critical importance. Residual cold war disputes across the Atlantic are likely …

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