It’s had a very useful if sometimes controversial past and it will have great relevance for many more years ahead. That’s the sense one has about the Declaration on the Right to Development as it is commemorated 30 years after its adoption by the United Nations General Assembly in 1986.
While the world’s population of 7.4 billion is growing at 1.1 percent per year – about half the peak level of the late 1960s – enormous differences in demographic growth among countries are increasingly evident and of mounting concern to countries and the international community.
As Olympic swimmer Yusra Mardini opened the floor for US President Barack Obama’s leaders’ summit on refugees, she embodied a hope unavailable to most child refugees.
Yazidi Nadia Murad - who survived being kidnapped and forced into sexual slavery by ISIL - was honoured by the UN on Friday September 16 for her work to help human trafficking survivors.
With record numbers of forcibly displaced persons around the world, many were left disappointed by the outcome of a high level UN summit designed to address the issue by bringing together world leaders on the sidelines of the UN's annual General Assembly.
Every November, India’s Gahirmatha beach in the Indian Ocean region develops a brownish-grey rash for 60 to 80 days. Half-a-million female Olive Ridley turtles emerge out of the waves to lay their eggs, over a hundred each. For the sheer numbers, this arrival is hard to miss.
Caribbean countries make a special case for development. The high and increasing exposure to hazards, combined with very open and trade-dependent economies with limited diversification and competitiveness portray a structurally and environmentally vulnerable region, composed, in the most part, of middle income countries.
It was little-known Brazilian delegate Bertha Lutz who led a band of female delegates responsible for inscribing the equal rights of women and men in the UN Charter at the San Francisco Conference on International Organisation in 1945.
In a giant step for transparency at sea, environmentalists on Thursday unveiled a website that allows anyone with an Internet connection to see for free exactly where and when most of the world’s industrial fishing boats actually fish.
Wildlife trafficking is high on conservation and political agendas. It is also increasingly high on the global crime agenda. Rightly so: corruption was identified recently by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime as the main enabler of wildlife trafficking – one of the largest transnational criminal activities in the world.
Next week’s landmark UN summit on refugees and migrants was supposed to help resettle one in ten refugees, instead UN member states have settled for vague gestures, including a campaign to end xenophobia.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, one of the strongest advocates of press freedom, is facing two politically-sensitive issues which are beyond his decision-making jurisdiction: a proposal for a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) aimed at providing journalists with the right to access information, and the creation of a UN Special Envoy ensuring the safety of journalists worldwide.
The international conservation community has taken an important step towards saving African elephants from mass slaughter by voting at a major congress to call on all governments to ban their domestic trade in ivory.
A major environmental conference of governments and NGOs has called on nations to set aside at least 30 percent of the world’s oceans as “highly protected” areas by 2030, but delegates said opposition from China, Japan and South Africa had seriously undermined chances of success.
Japan and South Africa have ignited a furore at a major conservation congress by coming out against a proposed appeal to all governments to ban domestic trade in elephant ivory.