Fearing a Veto Threat, Security Council Delays Action on North Korea

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By Rodney Reynolds | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis

Model of a Unha-9 rocket on display at a floral exhibition in Pyongyang, 30 August 2013 | Credit: Wikimedia Commons

UNITED NATIONS (IDN) – When the 15-member UN Security Council (UNSC) met at an emergency session on February 7, a non-working Sunday afternoon, to discuss the most recent defiance by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), the outcome was predictable.

After “urgent consultations”, the UNSC “strongly condemned” DPRK for launching a rocket which could lead to the future development of intercontinental ballistic missile technologies.

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Japan Promotes Low-Carbon Technologies Through UNIDO

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Japan’s Permanent Representative to the UN in Vienna, Ambassador Mitsuru Kitano, and the UNIDO Director-General Li Yong.

VIENNA (IDN) - While several member states have been withdrawing their support to the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) over the years, Japan agreed on January 27 to replenish its financial contributions to the agency for encouraging the utilisation and dissemination of new low-carbon technologies particularly in Africa.

Japan’s Permanent Representative to the international organisations in Vienna, Ambassador Mitsuru Kitano, and the UNIDO Director-General Li Yong, signed an agreement on the second replenishment of about $2.5 million for the Low Carbon Low Emission Clean Energy Technology (LCET) Programme implemented by UN agency, among others, in Ethiopia and Kenya.

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Burundi President Defies UN and the African Union

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By Rita Joshi | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis

Burundi's President Pierre Nkurunziza | Credit: afrikareporter.com

BERLIN | ADDIS ABABA (IDN) - Within less than a week of African leaders rejecting repeated demands to deploy troops of the African Union in strife-torn Burundi, the 54-nation group has appointed a high-level delegation of five African presidents to negotiate with factions in the East African country over the possible deployment of an African peacekeeping mission.

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Devastated Timbuktu Mausoleums Rebuilt

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By Anusha Meyer | IDN-InDepthNews Report

PARIS (IDN) - The Timbuktu mausoleums, destroyed by radical Islamists four years ago, are back on their feet now, UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Director-General Irina Bokova told the people of Mali on February 4.

The UNESCO chief’s message coincided with a consecration ceremony of the Timbuktu mausoleums, last held in the 11th century, celebrated at the initiative of the local community. It marked the final phase of the United Nations-backed cultural rebirth of the age-old Sahara city after the destruction wrought by radical Islamists in 2012.

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Narcotics Board Calls for Closing the Global Pain Divide

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By Jaya Ramachandran | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis

BERLIN | VIENNA (IDN) - About 92 percent of morphine used worldwide is consumed by only 17 per cent of the world population – predominantly in the United States, Canada, Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand.

While consumption in those countries has increased significantly since the early 1990s and there is growing concern about prescription drug abuse, more than 75 per cent of the people in several low and middle-income countries have no medical access to narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances.

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Japan and Kazakhstan Campaign for Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty

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By Ramesh Jaura | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis

VIENNA | TOKYO (IDN) - As the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) prepares to convene a ministerial meeting in June, Kazakhstan and Japan have reaffirmed their commitment to intensify their efforts toward entry into force of the Treaty.

During the first week of the symposium ‘Science and Diplomacy for Peace and Security’ from January 25 to February 4, representatives of the two countries in Vienna assured that they would set forth their efforts initiated by their respective foreign ministers in September 2015 at the United Nations headquarters in New York.

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UN Prepares for a Better Tomorrow for World’s Youth

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VIENNA (IDN) – The UN General Assembly will hold a Special Session (UNGASS) on the world drug problem in April 2016 with a view to achieving the goal of “a better tomorrow for world’s youth”.

In preparation of this session, the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) has reiterated the importance of a balanced approach to drug control policy and practice, in order to work towards the health and welfare objectives of the three international drug control treaties.

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Nuclear-Test-Ban Debate Focuses on Iran and North Korea

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By Ramesh Jaura | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis


VIENNA (IDN) - Iran and North Korea dominated the landmark symposium ‘Science and Diplomacy for Peace and Security’ organised by the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) end of January in Vienna, the capital of Austria.

As chance would have it, ahead of the event, on January 16, U.S. President Barack Obama revoked a 20-year system of sanctions against Iran and Federica Mogherini, the European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs, announced the lifting of EU economic blockade against Tehran.

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Mugabe Claims Two Permanent Security Council Seats for Africa

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By Ronald Joshua | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis


ADDIS ABABA (IDN) - Africa’s veteran, though highly controversial leader, President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe has reiterated the call for reforms of the UN Security Council saying the continent should have the same powers as the five permanent members – Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States.

In his opening address to the 26th African Union (AU) Summit on January 30-31 – as outgoing chairperson of the bloc – he repeated the African leaders’ demand who have been pushing for the continent to have at least two permanent seats in the Security Council, with equal veto power.

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UNDP Turns 50 Facing Huge Tasks Ahead

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By Rita Joshi | IDN-InDepthNews Report

BERLIN | NEW YORK (IDN) - As the UN Development Programme (UNDP) celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, the organisation is aware of the unfinished job, and is committed to “end poverty once and for all” – in Africa and Asia-Pacific where it has been present since the agency was created in 1966.

Reviewing its performance in Africa, UNDP says the continent has undoubtedly made “significant strides socially, politically and economically since the turn of the 21st century”.

Rapid democratic transitions are leading to more responsive and accountable governments. The frequency of armed conflicts seems to be on a downward trend. Steady economic growth and macroeconomic stability have returned. Expanded social policies are improving health and education services, including those targeting women and girls.

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Ten Experts to Spark Implementation of 2030 Agenda

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By J Nasranis | IDN-InDepthNewsReport

NEW YORK (IDN) - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has set up a group of ten experts to provide flesh and blood to the Technology Facilitation Mechanism (TFM) that was launched at the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit on September 25, 2015.

The Mechanism seeks to promote science, technology and innovation to achieve the 2030 Agenda. The group consists of representatives of civil society, the private sector and the scientific community.

TFM comprises a United Nations inter-agency task team on science, technology and innovation (STI), which currently gathers 25 UN entities; an annual multi-stakeholder forum on science, technology and innovation; and an online platform that serves as a gateway for information on existing STI initiatives, mechanisms and programmes.

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