Vitaly Churkin, 64, Russia’s Longtime Ambassador to the UN, Dies Suddenly

Vitaly Churkin meets the press

Vitaly Churkin, 64, the Russian ambassador to the United Nations since April 8, 2006, died on Feb. 20. A statement from the Russian mission to the UN said Churkin “died suddenly.” It added: “A prominent Russian diplomat has passed away while at work. We’d like to express our sincere condolences to Vitaly Churkin’s family.” Churkin was said … Read more

In Synch, China and Russia Vote No on Syria Referral to ICC

Russia and China have once again blocked a United Nations Security Council resolution on Syria. The latest resolution, proposed with great consideration by France and co-sponsored by 65 countries, including the United States, was to take a long-awaited, assertive step forward by referring the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court for investigation of … Read more

Graphic Photos Reveal Syria’s Deadly Mix of Torture and Starvation

Syrian starvation victim

Systematic widespread torture and starvation of prisoners held by the Syrian government has been documented by a team of forensic pathologists and confirmed by international legal experts using evidence provided through a former Syrian military official, according to a recent presentation held by France at the United Nations. High-resolution images projected on a screen to … Read more

UN Peacekeepers Heading to the Central African Republic by the Fall

The United Nations Security Council has authorized yet another peacekeeping force for an African country, the Central African Republic, approving up to 12,000 military and police personnel who are not likely to arrive until mid-September. The goal of the force is broad, given the nation’s crippled affairs: restore law and order, protect civilians, provide humanitarian … Read more

Russia Supplies the Single Vote Against UN Action on Ukraine

Facing near-unanimous Security Council support over the situation in Ukraine, Russia supplied the single veto needed to nix a resolution that aimed to de-legitimize the scheduled referendum on Crimea’s seceding from the country, to be held March 16, in a vote today in the United Nations Security Council. Russia’s veto on the resolution was expected. … Read more

The UN Approves a New Peacekeeping Force to Fix Mali

Displaced Malians

The United Nations Security Council has authorized a new, ambitious stabilization mission to be deployed in Mali, consisting of nearly 13,000 military and police personnel who will begin operating on July 1 with a mandate of one year to provide security to “key population centers.” The mission, called Minusma (for Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in … Read more

France’s Intervention in Mali Just Got More Complicated

Mbera refugee camp in Mauritania.

In its fifth day, France’s air assault against Al Qaeda-related militias and other regional Islamic extremists continues to rattle central Mali and the de fact border region separating the country from its northern territory, which was seized by a range of terrorist groups last spring. Contrary to France’s assertion earlier this week, it said more … Read more

As UN Monitoring Mission Dies in Syria, a New Envoy Is Named

Gerard Araud of the Security Council

The United Nations Security Council will not renew the mandate for the monitoring mission it set up in Syria this spring to supervise a peace plan that never materialized. The mandate for the UN Supervision Mission, called Unsmis, expires Aug. 19. The unarmed mission, renewed in July for 30 days, is down to 100 officers … Read more

Kofi Annan Resigns as Special Envoy for Syria

Kofi Annan, joint special envoy for Syria

Kofi Annan, the joint special envoy for the United Nations and the Arab League for the Syrian crisis, resigned today, leaving any residual hope for a peaceful resolution to the conflict gone for now. The resignation seems to have taken the UN by surprise, though Gérard Araud, the French ambassador to the UN, said after … Read more

 

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