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Women

November 19, 2020 
Monique Yéli Kam
OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso — Monique Yéli Kam’s war room is not a typical campaign headquarters for a national presidential candidate. A dusty white marquis stands next to stacked blue chairs fanning out to a balcony that leads to a room where teenage boys jostle to play a soccer video game. Upstairs in her apartment, …
November 10, 2020 
When it comes to power and influence in the United Nations system, the president of the General Assembly has little control beyond a procedural role in managing an often-fractious body of member nations, now numbering 193, each with policies of its own. The Assembly is forbidden by Article 12 of the UN Charter, for …
November 8, 2020 
From a young age, Zahra Mirzaei, 32, decided to become a midwife after she encountered a kind doctor who encouraged her to pursue studies in the field. Observing the role that midwives played in her country — Afghanistan — while challenged by extremely limited educational opportunities for women and girls, Mirzaei said: “It spoke …
October 14, 2020 
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Twenty-five years ago this month, tens of thousands of women (and some men) gathered in Beijing for the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women. It was a profound moment in the history of women’s rights, convening 5,000 official delegates from nearly every country in the world and more than 30,000 …
October 8, 2020 
Windhoek seminar held in May 2000
In a year of anniversaries at the United Nations, one stands out of special interest to women in peacekeeping and humanitarian work in conflict zones and other arenas of crisis where civilian rights are trampled on and families and societies severely disrupted. On October 31, 2000, the Security Council passed a breakthrough resolution 1325 …
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 30, 2020 
It has been a banner year for the long-overdue push to appoint women to the notoriously male-dominated leadership ranks of United Nations peacekeeping and political missions. Five out of six mission-leadership jobs in the first half of 2020 went to women. That includes all-female leadership teams not only in Cyprus but also in Iraq, …
September 29, 2020 
In the rubble of what’s left of American commitments to international organizations, one survivor is doing well. The United Nations Population Fund, or UNFPA, the perennial target of Republican politicians and presidents since the 1980s, is thriving. Arthur Erken, director of communications and strategic partnerships at the Population Fund, said in an interview with …
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 …
August 19, 2020 
To keep tabs on the lives and rights of people across the world, the United Nations Human Rights Council has the help of 44 independent monitors supposedly chosen for their expertise on a range of themes, from harsh government abuses to often-overlooked individual special needs. A dozen others are assigned specific countries to watch. …
May 26, 2020 
The world of diplomacy has toyed with the concept of feminist foreign policies for years, raising some support and not a few snickers from dissenters. A new campaign led by women with strong professional qualifications and global experience in more than 50 organizations plans to change that mind-set in the United States. On May …
March 25, 2020 
Authors Samea Shanori and Fiona Shukri in Kabul
Afghan women’s inclusion in the current peace negotiations with the Taliban and the United States has become an international cause célèbre. But calls for participation of Afghan women without methodical, sustained and substantive engagement in a peace settlement has the potential to harm them, not help them. The international community should ensure that Afghan women …
March 4, 2020 
UN Secretary-General António Guterres
With International Women’s Day, March 8, on the horizon, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres blasted the intractable power of patriarchy, the cause of overwhelming gender injustice and an abuse of historical proportions, in his view. “Just as slavery and colonialism were a stain on previous centuries, women’s inequality should shame us all in the …

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