Headlines

Biodiversity Masterplan: Negotiations on Crucial Science, Technology for Implementation Underway

The triple planetary crises of climate change, biodiversity loss, pollution, and waste are escalating. At the current pace, the world is on track to lose one quarter of all plant and animal species by 2030, with one species already dying out every 10 minutes. One million species face extinction. Human activity has already altered three-quarters of the land on Earth and two-thirds of the ocean.

South Africa will be President of G20 in 2025: Two much-needed Reforms it Should Drive

South Africa will play an important international role in 2025 as president of the G20. The G20 is a group of 19 countries as well as the African Union and the European Union. Between them they represent 85% of global economy, 75% of world trade and 67% of global population. The G20 defines itself as the premier multilateral forum for international economic cooperation.

General Assembly Strengthens Palestine’s Status at UN — with New Privileges

The United States and its closest political and military ally, Israel, once again found themselves isolated last week when 143 of the UN’s 193 member states approved a resolution enhancing the role of Palestine providing it with new diplomatic privileges. And the US, meanwhile, has implicitly threatened to cut off funding-- if and when the UN provides legitimacy to Palestine. But that legitimacy is not likely to be achieved as long the US continues to exercise its veto to deny Palestine the status of a full-fledged UN member state.

The World Must Not Abandon the Mothers of Gaza

As millions of children and families celebrate their mothers, my thoughts turn to the pregnant women and new mothers our teams at UNFPA, the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency, support in more than 130 countries around the world. And I hold in my heart all those who, tragically, will never live to see their newborns.

Latin America and the Caribbean Hit with Record-Breaking Heat and Other Climate Effects in 2023

Every year for the last four years, a collaborative effort involving scientists and other experts has assessed the state of the climate in Latin America and the Caribbean. The findings have revealed increasingly alarming trends for the world’s second-most disaster-prone region.

Biden ‘Moving the Goal Post’ With Threat to Withhold Bombs from Israel

While some Palestine defenders on Wednesday welcomed U.S. President Joe Biden's threat to withhold bombs and artillery shells from Israel if it launches a major invasion of Rafah, critics noted that an invasion is already underway and accused the American leader of walking back a previous "red line" warning against an Israeli assault on the southern Gaza city.

Inclusivity, Impact, and Innovation Needed to Meet SDGs, UN Civil Society Conference Hears

The world is neither on track to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) nor is it leveraging emerging opportunities to effectively address global concerns such as extreme hunger, poverty, conflict, and climate change. Global concerns have outpaced existing structures for international cooperation and coping.

The Bleak déjà vu in Darfur

As dawn breaks over Darfur, my return after two decades feels heavy. Many millions are suffering once again. Twenty years ago, I was part of the humanitarian effort to make a difference. That was in the early 2000s, when celebrities and world-famous journalists would make the trek in a well-intentioned effort to focus attention on the atrocities across Darfur.

Dissenting Voices at Nairobi Soil Health Forum Over Increased Fertilizer Use

As the Africa Fertilizer and Soil Health Summit convened in Nairobi to review the progress made in terms of increasing fertilizer use in line with the 2006 Abuja Declaration, experts, practitioners, activists, and even government officials pointed out that accelerated fertilizer use may not be the magic bullet for increased food production in Africa.

Choose Hope: Standing at the Crossroads of the Future

We are at the tipping point in human history, facing major existential crises. The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has heightened the risk of a nuclear weapon being used since the Cold War. Furthermore, the climate crisis is accelerating. In these crises, the most affected are those in vulnerable situations.

Beyond the Fields: Unraveling Zambia’s Drought Crisis and the Urgent Call for Climate-Health Solutions

For most families in Zambia, April is traditionally a month of plenty—it is typically the beginning of a harvest season for various food and cash crops. Both fresh and dried maize, groundnuts, pumpkins, and a whole variety of both traditional and exotic food crops are usually in full supply and readily available for consumption, supporting household food security and nutrition.

The Enormous Risks & Uncertain Benefits of an Israeli Strike Against Iran’s Nuclear Facilities

Iran’s unprecedented attack on Israel on April 13 has significantly escalated the tensions between the countries. For the first time, a declared and extensive Iranian military operation was carried out on Israeli territory. Now, the decision on how to respond rests with Israel. A direct war between the two countries now no longer seems unlikely.

Trade Liberalisation Kicked Away African Development Ladder

Africans have long been promised trade liberalisation would accelerate growth and structural transformation. Instead, it has cut its modest production capacities, industry and food security.

Amid Record Displaced Persons, Migrant Remittances Spike—New IOM Report

While there have been a record number of displaced people worldwide, according to a new report by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), migrant remittances are promoting human development.

How do Taxes Drive the Sustainable Development Goals?

Tax revenue remains the most sustainable source of income for governments and plays a crucial role in financing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It diminishes the need for international assistance and contributes to the repayment of burdensome debt, ultimately strengthening a country’s ability to withstand external shocks.

A Russian Veto Threatens to Trigger a Nuclear Arms Race in Outer Space

When the 15-member UN Security Council failed last month to adopt its first-ever resolution on outer space—co-sponsored by the US and Japan—the Russian veto led to speculation whether this was a precursor for a future nuclear arms race in the skies above. The vetoed resolution was expected to “affirm the obligation of all States parties to fully comply with the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, including not to place in orbit around the Earth any objects carrying nuclear weapons or any other kinds of weapons of mass destruction, install such weapons on celestial bodies or station such weapons in outer space in any other manner.”

Working to Keep Náhuat, the Language of the Pipil People, from Vanishing in El Salvador

A group of children participating in an immersion program in Náhuat, the language of the Pipil people and the only remaining pre-Hispanic language in El Salvador, are the last hope that the language will not die out.

Many African Nations Making Progress in the Rule of Law

The United Nations Office of Rule of Law and Security Institutions (OROLSI) supports the promotion of the rule of law, security, and peace in conflict-affected countries.

Civil Society Scores LGBTQI+ Rights Victory in Dominica

On 22 April, Dominica’s High Court struck down two sections of the country’s Sexual Offences Act that criminalised consensual same-sex relations, finding them unconstitutional. This made Dominica the sixth country in the Commonwealth Caribbean – and the fourth in the Eastern Caribbean – to decriminalise same-sex relations through the courts, and the first in 2024.

1.8 Million More Palestinians Doomed to Poverty if Gaza War Persists

Nearly seven months into the Gaza war, the UN warns that to rebuild and restore the buildings lost in this period, it would take several decades, and to revitalize Palestine’s economy, it would be a great undertaking. Meanwhile, the great losses in housing and public services and the economic stall only threaten to push even more Palestinians into poverty.

LDCs Need Concessional Grants, Not Loans, Say Experts

Olaide Bankole was born and raised in Nigeria, and he observed how climate change was evident in the country with temperature rises and rainfall variability and how drought, desertification, and sea level rises have been affecting its people. He is also aware of how rising sea levels threaten southern Nigerian cities like Lagos and coastal areas, increasing their vulnerability to flooding and waterborne diseases.

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