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UNESCO

  •  February 23, 2014 
Teacher and class in Niger.
What can be done to educate the 250 million children, mostly in South Asia, West Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, who lack basic reading and math skills by the time they reach adulthood? The answer to this global learning crisis, a new United Nations report says, is that governments must spend more money to provide quality …
  •  October 17, 2013 
Monticello, a Unesco World Heritage Site
The United States may be ineligible to vote in Unesco’s November elections to choose members of the agency’s executive board and the next director-general, among other major matters, because the US stopped paying its dues as a member in October 2011. Unesco, formally called the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, is known for …
  •  September 24, 2013 
Hassan Rouhani
The annual United Nations debate of the 68th General Assembly got off to a contentious start on Sept. 24 with pointedly worded but divergent speeches by Brazil’s president, Dilma Rousseff, and Barack Obama, the president of the United States. The two countries traditionally kick off the annual debate, held every September in New York …
  •  February 12, 2013 
The metro in Cologne, Germany
BRUSSELS — George Gershwin certainly would not have been inspired to write a symphonic tone poem about an American academic on sabbatical attempting to interpret European reactions to the United Nations. Ten years ago, Robert Kagan wrote that “Americans are from Mars and Europeans from Venus.” Perhaps, but not regarding the UN. After years …
  •  January 15, 2013 
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 …
  •  November 30, 2012 
43rd plenary meeting of the General Assembly67th session: Question of Palestine
The General Assembly voted to elevate the Palestinian territories‘ status at the United Nations to nonmember observer state from nonmember observer entity, which it has held since 1974. The vote, occurring late afternoon on Nov. 29 in a packed Assembly Hall, was preceded by several speeches, including one by Mahmoud Abbas, the chairman of …
  •  November 12, 2012 
Wole Soyinka, author of "Of Africa"
The Nigerian playwright Wole Soyinka, winner of Africa’s first Nobel Prize for Literature in 1986, has published a new book calling for urgent action by Africans to save themselves from the threat of Islamic extremism, against which corrupt regimes seem unable protect the tolerance and spiritual strength of traditional cultures. “If Africa falls to …
  •  August 20, 2012 
Prague's Vlata River.
When it comes to mysteries, the United States’ decision to rejoin Unesco in 2002 under a Republican administration and after nearly two decades’ absence remains puzzling, but it appears the move can be traced to Hollywood. Unesco (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) has always borne the brunt of criticism from US politicians. …
  •  June 20, 2012 
Congolese children in an unfinished classroom at a primary school near the Kahe refugee camp in Goma, North Kivu Province.
Optimists in many developing countries are convinced that their expanding youth populations will be engines of economic growth in coming decades. They call this the “demographic dividend.” Social scientists and demographers in those same nations, however, are usually more wary of the future, as they focus on how those children, on whom so much …
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