Launch of UN SDG: Learn

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(Source: https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/hlpf/2019/SDGsLearning)

Organized by the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), UN partners met today to celebrate the launch of the UN SDG: Learn, which is an online knowledge platform for stakeholders to learn more about each of the sustainable development goal.

Having been devoting to delivering innovative training for all to increase the capacity of global community in responding to ever-changing international challenges, the UN SDG: Learn aims to optimize each individual’s learning experience through allowing the user to Continue reading

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COOPS 4 DECENT WORK

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(Source: https://www.un.org/development/desa/cooperatives/international-day-of-cooperatives/2018-2.html)

Organized by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs’ Division of Inclusive Development (DESA, DISD), this meeting was convened to celebrate the International Day of Cooperatives.

The opening segment consisted of an introduction to the 2019 theme of the celebration: “COOPS 4 DECENT WORK.” The Permanent Representatives of Nepal and Mongolia were invited to explain how, due to their democratic nature, cooperatives function as an effective tool for the empowerment of individuals and solidarity of their communities in both developed and developing countries.

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High-level Event: Strengthening the Rule of Law and Human Rights to Achieve Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies

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(Source: https://pixabay.com/photos/justice-statue-dublin-ireland-626461/)

The UNPD, UNESCO, the Permanent Mission of Argentina, and the Permanent Mission of Austria co-organized such an event on the eve of High-Level Political Forums (HLPF) to set the tones for further discussion on SDG 16 and concerning issues. Ms. Ana Maria Menendez considered the HLPF to be the timing for taking stocks of all efforts reviewing the progress done so far. The forum should also investigate the linkages between SDGs, in particular, goal 5, 10, and 16 concerning the topic of today. On gender equality, society should strive to establish norms and mechanisms to address the problems women and girls face in accessing justice and human rights protection. Goal 10 establishes the principle of non-discrimination in all institutions while goal 16 similarily calls for access to justice for all.

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UNODC 2019 Global Homicide Study (co-organized by the Permanent Mission of Italy and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC)

Today’s meeting discussed homicide rates across the world in regards to both the victims and who is committing these murders. A thorough presentation was given explaining how it contained statistics in international rates of homicide across 202 countries from 1990-2017. Putting them in groups of location, age, gender, etc., 45% have data from 20+ years, 33%have from 11-20 years and 22% have up to 10 years. 

Studies found that Violent behavior and homicide happen more with men than women. The Americas has the highest rate of homicide followed by Africa, Asia, Europe, and Oceania. 

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2019 Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction

This afternoon’s meeting discussed 2019’s plan on risk reduction in regards to the climate. From 1998-2017 1.3 million were killed by climate concerns and the numbers appear to be continuing to rise. The UN wants to take action and find ways to get these numbers to drop which is why a plan was drawn explaining potential risks and how to stop them. By taking Stock of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (the plan from 2015-2030), we inform the public of potential risks thereby creating momentum to find ways to stop them. 

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The Case of Puerto Rico

The Special Committee on the Situation with regard to the Implementation of the Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples met this morning to hear statements from petitioners regarding the case of Puerto Rico. The chairperson of the committee, H.E. Ms. Keisha Aniya McGuire commenced the meeting by stating that there had been 53 requests for intervention on this item. She then turned the floor over to petitioners.

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Security Council Meeting on the Situation in Mali

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(Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/statephotos/29795162411)

The last Security Council meeting in June convened today to discuss the exacerbated situation in Mali and rally support from the member states on the renewal of the mandate of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), set to expire on June 30th, for another 12 months. The chair began with the Secretary-General’s report on the status of Mali and the implementation of the Agreement on Peace and Reconciliation in the concerned region, which identified unresolved dangers to peace and proved the cruciality of MINUSMA’s work. By passing resolution 2480 without any objections, the mission was given a modified framework with clearer benchmarks on the definition of success and more specific and centralized work in the most dangerous area of Mali.

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Informal exchange on the Global Refugee Forum

Jordanian workers take a UNHCR official on a walk around tents at the Zaatri refugee camp for Syrian refugees in Mafraq

One year after the historic affirmation of the Global Compact on Refugees, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has decided to launch the first Global Refugee Forum on 17 and 18 December 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland. Co-organized by the Permanent Mission of Switzerland and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the meeting this morning was hosted to brief the Member States and potential participants on the rationale, purposes and goals of the forum.

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United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Launch of World Drug Report

Today’s morning gathering, organized by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), was convened to celebrate the launch of the annual World Drug Report. Following a comprehensive review of the document, delegates were given the opportunity to voice their contributions regarding its content.

At the outset, Ms. Miwa Kato, the UNODC Director of Operations, introduced key findings of the World Drug Report. Expounding how drugs are the biggest source of funding for organized crime, Ms. Kato affirmed that their use and proliferation undermines sustainability of societal development. Ms. Ms. Chloé Carpentier of the Statistics and Surveys Section of the Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs at UNODC was subsequently invited to appraise various aspects of the drug industry, including issues such as addiction treatment, incarceration, trafficking, and interception. Information regarding specific drugs, including cannabis, opioids, and psychoactive substances were further touched on.

With the floor open to comments from participants, delegates offered valuable input into policy-based solution development. Concerned with the conditions of the status quo, representatives from Mexico and Rwanda proposed a transition away from current security-heavy focus. Input from Colombia and Afghanistan suggested that, in addition to curbing drug supply, the roots of demand must be directly targeted. Furthermore, the expansion of communication networks through technology, practices of money laundering, and arrival of recent experimental substance were identified as pressing challenges to be addressed in the coming years.

Meeting: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Launch of World Drug Report

Date/Location:Wednesday, 26 June, 2019; 10:00-13:00; Conference Room 1, United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY

Speakers:

Ms. Simone Monasebian, Director, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) New York Office;

Ms. Miwa Kato, Director for Operations, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC);

Ms. Chloé Carpentier, Chief, Statistics and Surveys Section of Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC);

Interventions from Representatives

Written by: WIT Representative, Izabela Zawartka

 

Assembly of the States Parties to the International Criminal Court on Non-Cooperation

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The information session was held to give a brief account of the recent judgment by the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on 6 May 2019. It arose from Jordan’s appeal against the Pre-Trial Chamber’s earlier ruling that the country has breached its obligation as an ICC member by failing to arrest and surrender Sudan’s ex-president Omar Al-Bashir to the ICC when he visited Jordan for an Arab League Summit  in 2017, and that Jordan’s non-compliance to the Rome Statute should be referred to the Assembly of States Parties or the UN Security Council (UNSC)  for possible sanctions. Al-Bashir was alleged to have committed multiple counts of crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan.

On appeal, Jordan argued that Al-Bashir was entitled to immunity pursuant to the principle of sovereign equality under customary international law –  sovereign States are prevented from exercising their criminal jurisdiction upon the heads of other sovereign States. ICC was required to obtain a waiver of immunity from Sudan before requesting Jordan to arrest Al-Bashir under Article 98 of the Rome Statute.

Jordan also argued that Article 27 of the Rome Statute – which places restrictions on State’s immunity (including abolition of immunity even for Heads of State) does not apply to Sudan, as Sudan is not a party state to the ICC. Moreover, Jordan raised the argument that arresting Al-Bashir will contravene with its inter-states obligation on privileges and immunity under Arabic Convention in 1953.

The Appeals Chamber rejected all arguments and opined that Article 27 reflects the status of customary international law and found that there is no State practice that supports the  Head of State immunity in relation to an international criminal court in the exercise of its proper jurisdiction under customary international law. Moreover, the UNSC Resolution 1593 binds on all UN member states (including Sudan) to fully cooperate with the ICC regardless of whether one is an ICC party or not. The Court also stated that Article 98 does not  accommodate for inter-states immunity.

On the issue of whether the Pre-Trial Chamber had properly exercised its discretion in referring Jordan’s non-compliance with the Rome Statute to the UNSC, the Appeals Chamber found that Jordan had demonstrated intention in engaging with the ICC through seeking consultation from the Court prior to Al-Bashir’s visit to Jordan.

In conclusion, the Appeal Chambers affirmed the earlier ruling that Jordan has failed in exercising its ICC obligations but held that the court’s exercise of discretion in referral was erroneous.

Meeting: Assembly of the States Parties to the International Criminal Court on Non-cooperation

Date/Location: Monday, June 24, 2019; 10:00-12:00; Conference Room 7, New York, NY

Speakers:

Secretariat of the Assembly of States Parties;

Representatives of the International Criminal Court;

Representative of Korean and Senegal

Written By: WIT Representative Peggy Lau