TOPIC: WOMEN

Where Are the Female Leaders at the UN? Gender Bias Persists

The exhibition “HERStory: A Celebration of Leading Women in the United Nations” was held at the Unesco headquarters in Paris this summer, after it made its debut in New York last year. Designed to showcase the contributions of female leaders throughout the UN’s history, it featured such high-profile personalities as Margaret Anstee, the first woman … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

Has Anyone Seen the UN Secretary-General’s Human Rights Agenda?

Secretary-General António Guterres has set about modernizing some sectors of the United Nations and made impassioned statements about the need to protect human rights. But beyond rhetoric, so far there has been no indication of his modernizing the human-rights sector. We have seen this before. Dag Hammarskjold, a previous secretary-general, undoubtedly believed in human rights, … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

UN Chief Asks All Nations to Sign New Pact Protecting Women

Haunted by accumulating reports of sexual exploitation and abuse of women and girls by United Nations peacekeepers and others attached to UN missions around the world, Secretary-General António Guterres is taking the bold, unprecedented step of asking all governments to sign a compact pledging to prevent and stop these violations. The compact is voluntary and … Read more

GEOPOLITICS

US Congress Starts Slicing Away at 2018 National Budget, Sure to Hurt UN

The first round in the battle to write a federal budget, working off the Trump administration’s ruthless proposals announced in May, has ended in the House of Representatives appropriations committee. As feared by advocates for women, the poor, refugees, global health programs and even foreign language study, the Republican-led appropriations committee, which sets budget goals … Read more

NIKKI HALEY WATCH

US Pressures UN Chief to Take the Executive Reins

António Guterres just laid out his first major reform plan for the United Nations through a report presenting concrete suggestions embedded in wonky language and hyperbole. One recommendation that stands out is the emphasis by Guterres, the secretary-general, to reassert his role as the chief executive of the UN. It is that emphasis on centralizing … Read more

GEOPOLITICS

As the UN Chief Goes to Washington, He Reiterates Plight of Refugees

Photo: UN Secretary-General António Guterres in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

On International Refugee Day, António Guterres reiterated the plight of refugees and displaced people worldwide — a phenomenal 65.5 million people — in his first media briefing at United Nations headquarters in months. He let drop that he is traveling to Washington, D.C., from June 27-29 to lobby Congressional members on UN budget matters. The … Read more

GEOPOLITICS

On Climate Change, UN Secretary-General António Guterres Swipes at the US

“Allow me to be blunt,” António Guterres, the United Nations secretary-general, told his audience to an uneasy laugh. “Our world is in a mess.” Although Guterres could have been speaking to any audience anywhere, he was addressing a crowd gathered at the Stern Center for Sustainable Business at New York University on May 30, one … Read more

GEOPOLITICS

Can António Guterres Fend Off Trump’s War on the UN?

When António Guterres was chosen by the United Nations Security Council in October to become the next leader of the UN, neither he nor anyone else could have predicted precisely who would be commanding the Oval Office of the White House in January 2017, just as Guterres’s term opened. Now that Donald Trump has assumed … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

Advice to António Guterres: A Leaner UN Could Be a Better UN

GENEVA — Whether or not he is a fan of Chinese characters, António Guterres will have to discover the double meaning of a crisis as opportunity. United Nations corridors on First Avenue in New York are buzzing with anxiety about the possibility of impending cuts in funding from the United States, with hints from a … Read more

WORLDVIEWS

UN Secretary-General Guterres: Please Protect Our Pension Fund

United Nations staff members and retirees, concerned for many years about low-investment performance by our $54 billion pension fund and unprecedented delays in benefit payments, welcomed the adoption last December of a General Assembly resolution that allayed worries about attempts to privatize the fund. The resolution reaffirmed that UN financial rules and regulations remain the governing … Read more

How’s He Doing? António Guterres’s First Month as UN Secretary-General

António Guterres, the United Nations secretary-general

Thirty-two days in office as United Nations secretary-general, António Guterres spoke extensively to the media for the first time at UN headquarters, on Feb. 1. Indicative of the chaos gripping many parts of the world as a result of new White House actions, Guterres might be forgiven for waiting a month to address the media … Read more

The UN’s Ninth Secretary-General Takes Office Amid Loud Calls for Change

António Guterres, the new United Nations secretary-general, was chosen on merit and takes over the UN during an especially turbulent period and after a decade of low-key leadership and low staff morale. The “first” UN of governments includes the five veto-wielding members of the Security Council (P-5) that are stoking conflict, flouting international humanitarian law, … Read more

António Guterres, Sounding Priestlike, Arrives for Work as UN Secretary-General

He is no longer the “next SG,” as Twitter posts have been referring in the last few months to António Guterres, the man who was selected by the United Nations Security Council in October to lead the world body as the ninth secretary-general. Guterres, a 67-year-old former prime minister of Portugal who also managed the … Read more

TOPIC: WOMEN

At Swearing-In, António Guterres Pledges Gender Parity at the UN

António Guterres was sworn in as the ninth United Nations secretary-general on Dec. 12 in a low-key ceremony played out in the General Assembly Hall, featuring moving tributes by ambassadors to the 10 years that Ban Ki-moon has led the UN, a job he hands to Guterres on Jan. 1. Among other remarks, Guterres pledged … Read more

António Guterres, 67, Picked to Become the Next UN Secretary-General

António Guterres

António Guterres, a former Socialist prime minister of Portugal and until recently head of the United Nations refugee agency, has been selected by the Security Council to become the next secretary-general of the UN, starting a five-year term on Jan. 1. The decision is subject to two formal votes: one confirming acclamation in the council … Read more

UN’s Newest Vote to Pick the Next Secretary-General? Guterres Wins Again

António Guterres, a former prime minister of Portugal who most recently was the United Nations high commissioner for refugees, once more dominated the latest straw poll held by the UN Security Council on selecting the next secretary-general. The five-year term starts Jan. 1, 2017, when Ban Ki-moon, a Korean, leaves office. The fifth poll, an … Read more

Ban Ki-moon’s Turbulent UN Years, in His Own Words

Ban Ki-moon receives the Seoul Peace Prize in South Korea on Oct. 29, 2012, with his wife, Yoo Soon-taek.

With a cease-fire in Syria collapsing around him and bombs destroying precious relief supplies intended for the hungry, traumatized survivors of relentless government attacks on the once grand city of Aleppo, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon used his last speech to open a UN General Assembly debating season to lash out at the government of … Read more

Guterres Leads Latest Poll for UN Secretary-General Again, but It May Not Matter

The latest Security Council straw poll pointing to the selection of the next secretary-general of the United Nations happened on Sept. 9, with the results leaving António Guterres of Portugal still the front-runner ever since the informal, anonymous balloting began in the Security Council in July. The latest poll is the fourth such vote; the … Read more

What Do UN Staff Members Want From the Next Secretary-General?

While the United Nations approaches a major change at the top in selecting a new secretary-general for the next five years and conflicts across the globe continue to erupt, criticisms of UN management seem only to grow. The topic of management skills of the next secretary-general came up repeatedly during the public hearings held by … Read more

Only 1 Woman in Top-3 Winners Again in UN Secretary-General Vote

With 11 candidates left in the race this year for United Nations secretary-general, the Security Council held its second straw poll on Aug. 5, showing a slight shift in levels of support by the council’s 15 members, but placing António Guterres of Portugal at the top again. Yet once more, only one woman, this time … Read more

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