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un-building-350-230The United Nations is the one organization with the vision and reach to address the world’s most pressing challenges. When disaster strikes, the world turns to one organization for hope, help, leadership, and coordi­nation: the United Nations. When there is peace to keep between warring factions, the world asks the UN to mobilize peacekeepers, oversee elections, and create stability. In the face of challenges such as climate change, disease or poverty, the United Nations provides the platform for international cooperation.

The UN is an international organization, not a government.  As a result, its effectiveness depends on the participation of 193 sovereign member states and the backing of citizens around the world. The United Nations Association of the United States, a program of the United Nations Foundation, works day in and day out to support the mission of the UN by connecting Americans to the work of the UN and advocating for strong US leadership within the UN. 


UN Updates: January 22, 2015

*Keywords: SG=Secretary-General, DSG=Deputy Secretary-General

GA: The GA held an informal meeting this morning to discuss concerns about the rise in anti-Semitism around the world.  The SG said that anti-Semitism is one of the oldest forms of prejudices known to humankind, and that is the duty of the UN to speak out against this “poison of hatred.”

Ukraine:  Jeff Feltman, Under Secretary-General for Political Affairs, briefed the SC yesterday on Ukraine, saying the country is seeing its worst hostilities since the ceasefire.  Encouraging signs of progress are now being overshadowed by the renewed violence in the country. This morning, a tram came under artillery fire, killing 30 people.

Mali: The UN commended Mali today for the end of active transmission of Ebola in that country.  Head of UNMEER Ould Cheikh Ahmed reminded the country to remain vigilant on Ebola.  Eight people were infected in the country, six of which passed away.

Natural Disasters: Marking 10 years since the adoption of the Hyogo Framework for Action, the SG says that early warning systems, improved weather forecasting, and a greater understanding of the dangers posed by national disasters have helped to save thousands of lives. The framework, which focuses on building resistance in disaster-prone communities, was adopted just weeks after the Indian Ocean tsunami that killed over 227,000. Since its adoption there have been 3,400 internationally reported natural disasters.

Libya: UNSMIL condemned the reported armed attack against the country’s central bank branch in Benghazi.  The mission calls for the establishment of an independent commission of inquiry to investigate the situation.  The latest ceasefire breaches stress the importance of moving ahead with the dialogue process to address Libya's unstable situation with the dialogue process to address Libya’s unstable political and security situation.

DRC: The SG is concerned about the deteriorating situation in the DRC following the adoption of a draft electoral law by the National Assembly, currently under further review in the Congolese Senate. He deplores the loss of lives and injuries so far and calls on national security forces and protesters to refrain from further violence and to exercise maximum restraint. The SG underscores the government’s responsibility to provide political space for peaceful expression of opinions, and reiterates the need for a credible, peaceful, and timely electoral process in accordance with the constitution.

Israel:  A Palestinian man carried out an attack on a bus yesterday in Tel Aviv, injuring several Israelis.  The SG condemns the attack, reiterating that there can be no justification for deliberate attacks on civilians, and continues to call on all sides to refrain from further exacerbating an already tense environment.

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