The digital revolution arrived late at the heart of ministries of foreign affairs across the Western world. Ministries latched on to social media around the time of Tahrir Square and Iran’s 2009 Green Revolution, beguiled by a vision of the technology engendering a networked evolution toward more liberal societies.
As the United Nations commemorates its 75th anniversary this year, the financially-crippled Organization is also saddled with a rash of administrative problems, plus an ongoing cash crisis, perhaps one of the worst in history.
The United States and 18 other UN member states have come under fire for denying a woman’s legitimate right to “bodily autonomy”—the right to self-governance over one’s own body without coercion or external pressure.
Climate change is already a reality. Ever-more-ferocious cyclones and extended droughts lead to the destruction of infrastructure and the disruption of livelihoods and contribute to mass migration.
Last March, Operation Taiex led to the arrest of the gang leader behind the Carbanak and Cobalt malware attacks on over 100 financial institutions worldwide.
To live in a home with family, to have a safe environment, food and basic human necessities, are some of the essentials that most people expect to have without giving it all much thought. When a child is born, parents or caregivers are likely to provide these things. These expectations get renewed whenever someone gets married and moves to a new home, a different neighborhood, or a city. We can hardly find someone who will say that they were not expecting happiness and safety when stepping into a new relationship, or starting a new chapter of life. But these expectations of a better life turn disastrous for millions of people when they step into another country as a dependent.
“Unprecedented.” “Hell on Earth.” “Catastrophic.”
In Australia, these terms are being used to describe 17.9 million acres of burned land so far. While fires of this magnitude are certainly unprecedented, they’re far from unexpected.
One of the highlight activities as the United Nations commemorates its 75th anniversary this year will be the launch of an “annual temperature check” on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), progress. With only ten years left to the final whistle for the Goals, this activity that will take place each September will provide a snapshot of what’s working, and where countries need more action.
Like his predecessors, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has been pushing a reform program to help the organization adjust to the demands of contemporary global governance.
After nearly two weeks of negotiations at COP 25 climate negotiations in Madrid last month (2-13 December), governments will be adopting a new 5-year Gender Action Plan (GAP) that progressively builds upon the first GAP, and works to address many of the concerns raised by women and gender groups at the Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), including calls for greater focus on implementation and scaling up gender-just climate solutions.
Imagine going through the day without consuming or using some product, service, data, technology, personal contact, or payment which has not – at least in some part – crossed one or more national borders before reaching you.
The latest November 2019 UBS/PwC Billionaires Report
counted 2,101 billionaires globally, or 589 more than five years before. Earlier, Farhad Manjoo
had seriously recommended, ‘Abolish Billionaires’, presenting a moral case against the super-rich as they have and get far, far more than what they might reasonably claim to deserve.
Sexual and gender-based violence
terrorizes women and girls around the world, affecting as many as one in three women. Reporters play an essential role in bringing these cases to light so that authorities can take action and prevent further abuses. Yet reporting on gender-based violence comes with serious risks to survivors.
Currently, approximately 300 million tons
of oil-based plastic waste are produced every year. A significant amount of plastic waste ends up in the oceans, having a detrimental effect on marine ecosystems and coastal communities. Most of this waste originates from the Asia-Pacific region
“Fire bullets at the traitors of the country,” chanted mobs of Bharatiya Janata Party, or BJP, supporters wrapped in Indian flags in Delhi last week.
Let’s face what lies ahead with open eyes: 2020 is going to be a very tough year for the world, and developing countries in particular. The infant decade has already begun with the harbingers of climate disaster as thousands fled to beaches in Australia from raging bush fires, and the Middle East braced for more conflict after a U.S. air strike in Baghdad killed Iran’s top general.
In a world shaken by so many problems, it is difficult to look at 2020 and not make some kind of holistic analysis. While enormous progress has been made on many fronts, it is clear that the tide has turned, and we are now entering – or have already entered – a new low point in the history of humankind..
“Right now, I don’t want to get married. I have a long life and a dream in front of me”, a 14-year-old young girl from Bangladesh told her parents as she was just not ready to get married.
"I refused to marry off my daughter for a simple, good reason: I want my daughter to be empowered,” said Lemeima mint El Hadrami, 49. "I don't want her to go through the same difficulties I did when I was young." El Hadrami was married when she was only 13.
Happy New Year, Kenya. 2020 marks a decade of action towards the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
Peace and development are inextricably linked, with each making the achievement of the other far more likely. This puts the conflict-prevention and development work of the UN at the heart of the agenda in East Africa, but in a multi-agency and programme environment, making meaningful progress is challenging.
Plastic pollution is currently the largest global threat to marine life. Each year, 10-20 million tonnes of plastic
ends up in our oceans, killing approximately 100,000 marine mammals
and over a million seabirds.