Saturday, 28 November 2020

UN in your language

UNRIC InFocusl transparent

"UNRIC shines the spotlight on forgotten stories or themes that are on the UN's agenda."

  • Right to participation   ( 6 Articles )

    Right to participate

    HRD2012 EN logo

    To mark Human Rights Day, this issue of In Focus is dedicated to the same theme as the recent international day; the right to participation. A right that many have used the last years, some of which have suffered for it, as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay pointed out in her message 10 December. In Focus sheds the spotlight on a few of these people, from crowd sourcing Icelanders, via occupying students, to the European ombudsman, rapping Senegalese, legislation-initiating Finns and wall decorating Portuguese.


  • Literacy   ( 7 Articles )


    Literacy infographic title

    On the occasion of the International Day of Literacy we would like to highlight this important untold story. The 800 million people who are unable to read or write are almost all poor, two-thirds are female and most live the world’s poorest countries. While this does not come as a surprise, it is striking that one in five European fifteen year olds has poor reading skills and 75 million Europeans have low qualifications, often lacking basic reading and writing skills.


  • Happiness   ( 5 Articles )

    The UN and happiness


    How happy were you on 20 March this year? Given Western European statistics, let’s assume not overtly happy. Because, let’s face it; a grey March day in Europe is not always the most uplifting scenario. In fact, it might very well be that you cannot recall any specific feelings from the 20th of this rather anonymous month at all. However, the UN has named the 20 March the International Day of Happiness.

  • Rio+20   ( 5 Articles )

    Rio+20: A movement for change 

    RIO20 logo en web

    In Focus shines the spotlight on the other side of the Rio+20 Summit. It is widely reported that over 100 world leaders will meet in Rio for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development but it is less well known that 70,000 businesses and NGOs are expected to participate. As EU Commissioner Janez Potočnik said, “We can't wait for governments alone to take the initiative.”
    We look at the social side of the summit and what the UN Secretary-General calls “a movement for change”..


  • Human Trafficking   ( 7 Articles )

    Human trafficking: slavery of modern times

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    This time human trafficking is the theme of our In Focus. While sexual exploitation is the most common cause of trafficking, forced labour, illegal child adoption and even illegal organ sale are also a concern to authorities and campaigners such as the UN initiative, the Blue Heart Campaign.


  • Youth Unemployment   ( 4 Articles )

    Youth unemployment

    steps_Karin Beate Nøsterud - norden

    Youth unemployment is the theme in our In Focus this time. In Europe, on average, every fifth person under 24 is without a job and in Spain the percentage rises to over 40%. Although the employment situation in northern Europe is better, youth unemployment in Sweden is four times higher than the average rate. We take a special look at the young and the unemployed in Spain, Norway, Sweden and Germany.


  • Water - DbD   ( 6 Articles )

    Drop by Drop

    DBD logo EN

    More than 1,000 submissions have been recorded now when less than two weeks are to go until the 29 February deadline in the Drop by Drop, UN European Ad competition. This time the “In Focus” is on the competition´s theme: Water. Did you know that 120 million Europeans lack access to clean water? Did you know it takes 15,000 liters of water to produced 1 kilo of beef? And a child dies every 20 seconds due to lack of sanitation caused by the absence of clean water? We look at all these issues and what to expect from the Rio+20 conference.

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  • Indigenous people   ( 4 Articles )

    Indigenous people

    Ladakhi woman UN Photo - F. Charton

    The World´s indigenous people are In Focus this time. They can be found all around the world from Australia to the Arctic. We take a look at why they have been granted special rights in international law and take a closer look at Europe´s indigenous people; the Samis in three of the Nordic countries and the Greenlanders who seem to have independence within reach.

  • Volunteering   ( 6 Articles )

    Volunteering – Inspiration in Action

    LogoAll over the world more than 7,700 people volunteer and contribute to peace and development through the United Nations Volunteers Programme. UN Volunteers help to organize and run local and national elections and support a large number of peacekeeping and humanitarian projects. In this week’s In Focus we meet the head of the European Year of Volunteering John Mcdonald, two young volunteers speak about their experiences and we tell you how you can become a volunteer.

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  • Food Waste   ( 3 Articles )

    Food Waste

    Dumpster Divingor food loss is food that is discarded or lost uneaten. About one third of global food production ( around 30 to 40%), is lost or wasted annually. Loss and wastage occurs on all steps in the food supply chain. In low-income countries most loss occurs during production, post-harvest and processing level, while in developed countries much food is wasted at the consumption stage, at retail and consumer levels.

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  • Sanitation   ( 4 Articles )

    Sanitation - A child dies every 20 seconds

    Tom Van Cakenberghe

    One child dies every 20 seconds of diarrhea, a disease directly related to poor sanitation. This amounts to more deaths than AIDS, malaria and measles combined. Less progress has been made in improving sanitation than most of the other MDGs. It is surprising since for every dollar spent on sanitation facilities, there is an average return of $9. The cost of universal access to sanitation: the amount the world spends on bottled water every year.

  • Sri Lanka   ( 6 Articles )

    Sri Lanka – the untold crisis

    srilankaThis week our In Focus is devoted to Sri Lanka, the beautiful island which is now facing the challenge of overcoming its bloody past and focusing on development and stability.. As the UN Human Rights bodies consider if a full international inquiry on alleged war crimes should be launched, we look at the plight of Mariananthini and other forgotten returnees in the former rebel held northern provinces of the island where the majority of people live on one dollar a day. At the same time donors turn away since the island graduated to the status of a middle income state and because of the bad publicity of war crime allegations. Edward Mortimer finally argues why Sri Lanka matters.

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  • Madagascar   ( 2 Articles )

    Madagascar – the untold crisis

    A political rally in Madagascar in 2009Due to a volatile political situation, draught, floods and cyclones the Republic of Madagascar, an island country located in the Indian Ocean off the southeastern coast of Africa is facing a humanitarian crisis. In this weeks’ In Focus we look at what is happening in Madagascar and speak to Natascha Paddison acting Deputy Representative for UNICEF about what the organisation is doing on the ground.

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  • Good News   ( 5 Articles )

    The good news they forgot to tell you

    Front-page-photoIn Focus this week looks at the good news they forgot to tell you; that despite terrible examples of hunger and poverty, most of the world´s poor countries are winning the war on poverty, in large part thanks to international cooperation. For instance in Africa one third of inhabitants are defined as middle class.

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  • Responsibility to Protect   ( 3 Articles )

    The Responsibility to Protect

    Front page box UN Photo Igor Vasilev

    The Responsibility to Protect doctrine is the enabling principle that first obligates individual states and then the international community to protect populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. R2P, as it’s commonly known, is a set of principles based on the idea that sovereignty is not a privilege, but a responsibility. R2P was universally endorsed at the 2005 World Summit and then re-affirmed in 2006 by the U.N. In this week’s In Focus we look at the historical background and speak to the UN Special Advisor on R2P, Edward Luck and Alex Vines, Research Director at Chatham House about what R2P means in today’s world. ...   Read more...

  • The General Assembly   ( 4 Articles )

    Inside the General Assembly

    front page boxOn Tuesday, 13 September, the 66th session of the General Assembly will commence at UN Headquarters, bringing together leaders from all 193 Member States. The logistics require careful planning, most of which starts months in advance of the opening day.

    In this week’s In Focus we’ve spoken with the UN Chief of Protocol in order to hear what happens behind the scenes at the GA. We also look at what is on the agenda this year and what being a member of the world’s biggest club mean to the member states.

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  • Colombia   ( 4 Articles )
  • Forests   ( 4 Articles )
  • Year of Youth   ( 5 Articles )
  • Create4theUN Ad Competition   ( 4 Articles )
  • Nelson Mandela Day   ( 5 Articles )
  • World Population Day   ( 3 Articles )
  • Drugs   ( 5 Articles )
  • World Refugee Day   ( 8 Articles )
  • HIV / AIDS   ( 5 Articles )
  • World Environment Day   ( 7 Articles )
  • Violence Against Women   ( 4 Articles )
  • Peacekeeping   ( 6 Articles )