By Mahmoud Reza Golshanpazhooh* | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis
TEHRAN (IDN | Iran Review) - Finally, after about two years of negotiations and talks, the nuclear marathon between Iran and six big powers of the world reached its finishing point with the announcement of the Implementation Day of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and official announcement of the lifting of the European Union’s sanctions along with an important part of U.S. sanctions against Iran.
Of course, any smart analyst and politician knows that this good ending is also a beginning for foreign obstructionist efforts, domestic conflicts, doubts on the part of trade partners about the volume and extent to which economic relations should be developed as well as magnification of any weakness by governments and media that were opposed to this process from the very beginning.
By INPS Africa Bureau
NAIROBI | NEW YORK (IDN) - The idea of “greening the blue helmets” has become an accepted need and operational requirement for all UN peacekeeping missions, claims a new report by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) based in Nairobi.
Peacekeeping operations, it says, account for over 56% of the UN system’s total climate footprint as demonstrated by the greenhouse gas emissions inventory undertaken by UN Department of Field Support (DFS) in 2008.
By J. Nastranis | IDN-InDepthNews Report
NEW YORK | VIENNA (IDN) - While the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the lifting of sanctions on Iran, the Security Council announced on January 17 that it has removed Iranian Bank Sepah and its international subsidiary from a sanctions list.
The initiative followed the announcement previous day of a UN report confirming that Iran has completed necessary preparatory steps to start the implementation of a plan of action aiming to resolve the nuclear issue.
By Jaya Ramachandran | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis
VIENNA (IDN) - Political will and multilateral diplomacy marked a milestone as 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 and a Council member of the Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament (PNND), announced the lifting of EU economic blockade against Tehran on January 16.
By Kalinga Seneviratne* | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis
SINGAPORE (IDN) - Chinese President Xi Jingping officially launched on January 16 the much anticipated Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) describing it as a “historic moment” while his Finance Minister Lou Jiwei said in an interview that the launch of AIIB marked a milestone in the reform of the global economic governance system.
The $100 billion China-initiated bank took just two years to set up after it was initially proposed by President Xi during his visits to Southeast Asian countries in October 2013. In October 2014, representatives from 22 countries, mainly from Asia and including India, and strong U.S. regional allies – Philippines and Singapore – a signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to establish the AIIB and Beijing was selected to host Bank headquarters.
By Ronald Joshua | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis
ABIDJAN (IDN) - Africa has reason to rejoice at the fact that the flow of foreign tourists to the continent has quadrupled over a period of 15 years between 1990 and 2014. But as the bearer of the good news – a new report – warns, unless the African countries learn to appreciate the economic value of their wildlife and biodiversity, they would be in for trouble.
By Bernhard Schell | IDN-InDepthNew Report
DUBAI (IDN) - Government officials from over 150 countries and representatives from the private sector, civil society and international organizations are gathering in Abu Dhabi on January 16-17 for the first time after the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris in December to discuss the implications of the historic Paris Agreement.
By Jutta Wolf | IDN-InDepthNews Report
BERLIN (IDN) - Humankind has become a geological force that is able to quash the beginning of the next ice age, a study published in the renowned scientific journal Nature shows. Ice ages have shaped the global environment and thereby determined the development of human civilization.
Cracking the code of glacial inception, scientists of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research found the relation of insolation and CO2 concentration in the atmosphere to be the key criterion to explain the last eight glacial cycles in Earth history.
By Robert J. Burrowes* | IDN-InDepthNews Analysis
DAYLESFORD, Victoria | Australia (IDN) - It has been argued that nonviolent struggles to liberate occupied countries – such as West Papua, Tibet, Palestine, Kanaky and Western Sahara – have failed far more often than they have succeeded. But secessionist struggles that have sought to separate territory from an existing state in order to establish a new one conducted by nonviolent means have always failed.
By J Nastranis | IDN-InDepthNews Report
NEW YORK (IDN) – UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon commended the role played by ‘Group of 77’ (G77) developing countries and China, comprising 134 out of 193 member states of the United Nations, “in cementing historic 2015 successes”, as South Africa handed over Chair to Thailand on January 12.
At the handover ceremony of the Group’s Chairmanship, Ban expressed appreciation for South Africa’s “able stewardship as the Chair of the Group of 77 and China throughout such a historic year for multilateralism”, and warmly welcomed Thailand’s leadership.
An Interview by Africa Renewal’s Kingsley Ighobor*
In this exclusive interview, the United Nations Secretary-General’s former special adviser on post-2015 development planning, Amina Mohammed, talks about the evolution of the process, the commitments made, the challenges ahead, and why the goals, if implemented, could transform the world.
Africa Renewal (AR): What were the lessons learned from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and how did they shape the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?
Amina Mohammed (AM): With the MDGs, we only addressed the symptoms. We didn’t really address the root causes of such development challenges as gender inequality, lack of access to clean water and the insufficiencies of health services. We’ve learned through this experience that having a set of goals directs people to discuss, create partnerships and find investments to execute plans. We’ve also learned to agree on the means of implementation. With the MDGs, we agreed to finance them after the goals were adopted, so we were always running after the money. This time, finance is part of the package.