Yearly Archives: 2009
It’s been a rough year for a lot of us. Personally, we’ve seen jobs lost, promotions deferred, unemployment, uncertainty, and unease. Globally, we’re facing climate change, terrorism, and long, bloody wars. We’ve had a lot to face, and no one knows when it will get better. If you can read this, though, you are better off than most people on this planet. You’re literate, you have internet access, and you’ve got leisure time to spend reading blogs. You can probably give a little bit and be part of making things better.
I just saw this link on twitter – it’s old, but I thought it was a great end of year reflection: 60 Ways the UN Makes a Difference. In the midst of global financial crisis, climate change, and rapid globalization it’s easy to forget just how much the United Nations is part of our global history. Of the sixty ways, these are six of my favorite:
A new UN report shows that he number of returning Afghan refugees fell significantly in 2009 compared to 2008. The UN Refugee Agency says the drop is attributable to insecurity and limited economic opportunities for returning refugees. From the UN News Center:
The UN’s Conduct and Discipline website now has a new section. Called “Statistics,” it will make public the aggregate data on peacekeeper abuses. It’s an impressive demonstration of transparency – or at least it will be. The data isn’t up there yet.
Here’s what the statistics page says at present:
Iraq: The SG met with Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki in Baghdad today as well as Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani to review the ongoing security crisis. The SG congratulated Fouad Massoum on his election as Iraq’s new President and remarked that a new government “will strengthen the unity of the country, fight effectively against terrorism and ISIS, as well as uproot the seeds of sectarianism and division.”
SG: The SG met with Israeli President Peres in Jerusalem today to encourage dialogue between Israelis and Palestinians. Speaking to the press with President Peres, he again underlined the need to stop violence and begin dialogue that addresses the root causes of the conflict.
SG: The SG briefed the SC today from Ramallah where he reiterated his message from today’s earlier press conference in Tel Aviv with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to: “Stop fighting. Start talking. And take on the root causes of the conflict.” The SG will continue travelling this week to Jordan and Saudi Arabia.
SG: The SG arrived in Cairo today where he will meet with the Foreign Minister, President el-Sisi and US Secretary of State Kerry to promote the Egypt-initiated ceasefire in the Middle East. Spokesman Dujarric told reporters today that “the overriding messages that [the SG] brings is, first, that the violence must stop, and needs to stop now.”
Middle East: The SG welcomed the humanitarian pause negotiated by Special Coordinator Serry to allow civilians in Gaza to begin repairs on electrical and water infrastructure. WFP used the five-hour pause to deliver emergency food assistance to Gaza. The SG hopes the pause will lead to peace and a sustainable ceasefire.