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UNRIC Library Newsletter - May 2017

Article Index
UNRIC Library Newsletter - May 2017
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New UN websites & publications

UN in General

United Nations Digital Library 
Introductory video:

The new United Nations Digital Library (UNDL) provides easy access to documents, maps and voting data, as well as non-sales publications and will help citizens and researchers of the world find the UN information they need, quickly and accurately. It provides one global point of access to UN information – current and historical; content is updated daily.
What can you find in the United Nations Digital Library? UN documents and open access publications, UN voting data and speeches, UN maps, UN content freely available around the world, Content in 6+ languages.

San Francis Conference: all 20 volumes now digitized 
The digitization team of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library just finished the digitization of the documents of the 1945 United Nations Conference on International Organizations

UN System Chart (March 2017)


Economic Growth and Sustainable Development

Adolescent obesity and related behaviours: trends and inequalities in the WHO European Region, 2002–2014 (WHO) 
The report presents the latest trends in obesity, eating behaviours, physical activity and sedentary behaviour from the Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children (HBSC) study, and highlights gender and socioeconomic inequalities across the WHO European Region. Trends have previously been reported separately, but this report brings together for the first time HBSC data on obesity and obesity-related behaviours to review the latest evidence and consider the range and complexity of factors influencing childhood obesity

Africa Data Revolution Report 2016
The African Centre for Statistics at the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has launched the Africa Data Revolution Report 2016, a biennial report highlighting developments in African national data ecosystems. The 2016 edition is the inaugural Africa Data Revolution Report (ADRR) published by the ECA in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Open Data for Development and the World Wide Web Foundation. The first ADRR focuses on mapping the data ecosystem in Africa with reference to the production, distribution and use of data by public, private and civil society actors, as they relate to the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. It draws from in-depth case studies of national data ecosystems in 10 African countries: Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Swaziland and Tanzania.

atlasofafricaenergyAtlas of Africa Energy Resources
Energy consumption in Africa is the lowest in the world, and per capita consumption has barely changed since 2000 shows a new Atlas released on 4 May 2017 by the UN Environment and African Development Bank at the World Economic Forum being held in Durban, South Africa. Current energy production in Africa is insufficient to meet demand. About a third of the total African population still lacks access to electricity and 53 per cent of the population depends on biomass for cooking, space heating and drying. A kettle boiled twice by a family in the United Kingdom uses five times as much electricity as a Malian uses in a year. Prepared in cooperation with the Environment Pulse Institute, United States Geological Survey and George Mason University, the Atlas consolidates the information on the energy landscape in Africa. It provides information in the form of detailed ‘before and after’ images, charts, maps and other satellite data from 54 countries through visuals detailing the challenges and opportunities in providing Africa’s population with access to reliable, affordable and modern energy services.

Green Technology Choices: The Environmental and Resource Implications of Low-Carbon Technologies (UNEP)
A radical transformation in the way energy is supplied and used will be needed if the world is to meet its ambition of keeping global temperature increase to below 2 degrees Celsius, but the impacts of that transformation on the environment and on natural resources have been unclear. Now, the International Resource Panel, a group of eminent experts in natural resource management hosted by UN Environment, has provided a global assessment of the benefits, risks and trade-offs encountered when energy efficiency technologies are deployed alongside low-carbon electricity supply technologies. In its latest report released on 12 May 2017 at the Vienna Energy Forum, the Panel examines eight energy efficiency technologies and 36 sub-technologies across buildings, industry and transportation. The report shows that while there are clear environmental benefits from the use of these technologies, particularly in reductions to greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution, and land and water use, there may also be some additional considerations, such as an increased use of metals.

World Economic Situation and Prospects 2017: Update as of mid-2017(DESA)
Key Findings, Fact Sheet & Full Report in English, Press Release in English, French & Spanish: 
Growth in the global economy has picked up in the last six months in line with expectations, but in many regions, growth remains below the levels needed for rapid progress towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, according to the United Nations World Economic Situation and Prospects as of mid-2017 report, launched on 16 May 2017 at UN Headquarters. The report identifies a tentative recovery in world industrial production, along with reviving global trade, driven primarily by rising import demand from East Asia. World gross product is expected to expand by 2.7 per cent in 2017 and 2.9 per cent in 2018, unchanged from UN forecasts released in January this year. This marks a notable acceleration compared to just 2.3 per cent in 2016.


International Peace and Security

Concept note for the Security Council open debate on the theme “Sexual violence in conflict as a tactic of war and terrorism”
English, French & Spanish:  
The Security Council held an open debate on the topic “Women and peace and security: sexual violence in conflict”, on 15 May 2017. In order to help guide the debate, the Security Council President for May, Uruguay, has prepared this concept note.

Office of the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process (UNSCO): Report to the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee (Brussels, May 2017)
The lack of progress in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is impeding Palestine's development, according to a new United Nations report, which also reiterates the international community's commitment to a two-state solution in the region. The report, issued by the Office of the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process (UNSCO), notes that “despite a number of international efforts over the past six months to advance the two-state solution, last year has been characterized by a continued lack of progress on the political front.” The report covers the period from 15 September 2016 to 15 April 2017. It was presented to the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee (AHLC) at its bi-annual meeting in Brussels on 4 May. The Committee, chaired by Norway and co-sponsored by the European Union and the United States, serves as the principal policy-level coordination mechanism for development assistance to the Occupied Palestinian Territory.

Report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Nigeria (S/2017/304, 10 April 2017)
English, French & Spanish:
Children in north-east Nigeria continue to be brutalized as a result of Boko Haram’s insurgency in the region and the ensuing conflict, a first-of-its-kind United Nations report has concluded.
“With tactics including widespread recruitment and use, abductions, sexual violence, attacks on schools and the increasing use of children in so-called ‘suicide’ attacks, Boko Haram has inflicted unspeakable horror upon the children of Nigeria’s north-east and neighbouring countries,” said Virginia Gamba, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, in a press release from her Office. The report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Nigeria documents the impact on children of the severe deterioration of the security and humanitarian situation in the country between January 2013 and December 2016.

Report of the Secretary-General on conflict-related sexual violence (S/2017/249, 15 April 2017)
English, French & Spanish:
Survivors of sexual violence in war zones need to be recognized as legitimate victims of conflict and terrorism, and not blamed, stigmatized or shamed, the United Nations has said in an annual report presented to the Security Council. The report calls on traditional, religious and community leaders to address harmful social norms and help to redirect the stigma of rape from the victims to the perpetrators. If not, the victims may face lethal retaliation, “honour” crimes, suicide, untreated diseases, unsafe abortion, economic exclusion and indigence. Of particular concern in the report are children born of rape, which “may themselves face a lifetime of marginalization, owing to stigma and uncertain legal status.”

United Nations Peacekeeping Operations – Fact Sheet: 31 March 2017 (DPI/1634/Rev.191, April 2017)

United Nations Political and Peacebuilding Missions – Fact Sheet: 31 March 2017 (DPI/2166/Rev.164, April 2017)

Human Rights

UN Human Rights App
The UN Human Rights Office has launched a new mobile app to put the power of human rights at your fingertips. It provides an easy, user-friendly access to stories and news on human rights issues. Stories and news can be searched via region, country or theme. Users can also pre-select the countries and themes that interest them and see only those on the app. The app is the first of its kind for the UN Human Rights Office. It also includes a quiz, where users can test their human rights knowledge. Information is updated on a daily basis with an archive that goes back three months.

Human Rights Violations and Abuses in Yei: July 2016 – January 2017 (OHCHR / UNMISS)
A United Nations report published on 19 May 2017 released the findings of an in-depth investigation into human rights violations and abuses committed in and around Yei town, Central Equatoria (150km southwest of the capital, Juba) between July 2016 and January 2017. The report by the Human Rights Division of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) and the UN Human Rights Office documents violations and abuses against civilians both sides of the conflict, based on ethnicity and/or their presumed support for other side. This includes 114 killings by pro-Government forces. The extent of the abuses by armed opposition groups remains unclear due to lack of access to areas where these groups are active. The report finds that these violations and abuses may amount to war crimes or crimes against humanity and that they warrant further investigation.

Preventing violent extremism through education: A guide for policy-makers (UNESCO) 
This new UNESCO document offers guidance to help Member States deliver education programmes that build young people’s resilience to violent extremist messaging and foster a positive sense of identity and belonging. Together with the Teacher’s Guide on the Prevention of Violent Extremism, this Guide for policy-makers outlines measures that can be taken within education systems to address challenges posed by violent extremism. For example, the development of inclusive education policies and non-discriminatory educational contents; the promotion of safe learning environments; the development of confident and well-trained teachers and, finally, the establishment of empowering partnerships. The document also presents modalities of implementation and includes frequently asked questions.The Guide will be shortly issued in French and then in other UN languages. Both guidance tools serve as a basis for UNESCO capacity building workshops on the prevention of violent extremism through education.


Humanitarian Affairs

rootofexodusAt the Root of Exodus: Food security, conflict and international migration (WFP)
At a time when a record-high number of people have been forced to flee their homes across the world, this new study by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) clearly establishes that high levels of food insecurity lead to higher levels of migration across borders. The report determined that each one percentage increase in food insecurity in a population compels 1.9 percent more people to migrate. Further, 0.4 percent more people flee a country for each additional year of conflict. This means that a country with rising levels of food insecurity and conflict will experience greater outward migration, or movement of people away from their homes.

childisachildA child is a child: Protecting children on the move from violence, abuse and exploitation (UNICEF)
Report & Executive Summary:
Further information:
The global number of refugee and migrant children moving alone has reached a record high, increasing nearly five-fold since 2010, UNICEF said in a new report released on 17 May 2017. At least 300,000 unaccompanied and separated children were recorded in some 80 countries in the combined years of 2015 and 2016, up from 66,000 in 2010 and 2011. The report presents a global snapshot of refugee and migrant children, the motivations behind their journeys and the risks they face along the way. The report shows that an increasing number of these children are taking highly dangerous routes, often at the mercy of smugglers and traffickers, to reach their destinations, clearly justifying the need for a global protection system to keep them safe from exploitation, abuse and death.

iomstrategyIOM Middle East and North Africa Regional Strategy 2017–2020
The International Organization for Migration’s (IOM) Regional Strategy for the Middle East and North Africa sets out key objectives to guide IOM’s operations, strategic positioning and policy and advocacy work for the period from 2017 to 2020. While not a summary of the full breadth of IOM programming in the region, the objectives represent priority areas for action to improve the conditions and impacts of migration for individuals and societies, address acute and structural challenges in migration governance, and contribute to meeting international commitments and standards. The strategy aligns with the principles and objectives of the Migration Governance Framework, which was endorsed by IOM Member States in 2015. It also outlines subregional priorities for North Africa, the Mashreq and the Gulf countries and specifies cross-cutting issues and institutional principles that IOM adheres to throughout its work to maximize organizational effectiveness.    

mixedmovementsMixed Movements in South-East Asia 2016 (UNHCR Regional Office for South-East Asia)
More than 168,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar in the last five years as a result of violence and desperation, a new report on forced displacement in South-East Asia by UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, estimates. UNHCR’s 2016 Report on Mixed Movements in South-East Asia highlights the complex dynamics behind the whys and hows of the continuing exodus from Rakhine state. Sources range from government to non-governmental organizations, media reports as well as more than 1,000 direct interviews with the Rohingya community in the region.    


Searching for Syria (UNHCR & Google)
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and Google have launched a powerful new website that gives global online audiences an informative and compelling insight into the Syrian refugee crisis, its staggering human cost and the world’s humanitarian response aimed at helping millions of Syrian families, forced from their homes by violence and persecution, survive and restore their dignity. The website combines UNHCR data and stories, Google Search Trends and other sources to deliver answers to the five most common queries that people around the world are asking about the Syrian refugee crisis: What was Syria like before the war? What is happening in Syria? Who is a refugee? Where are Syrian refugees going? How can I help Syrian refugees? The answers are delivered through rich and immersive multimedia content – some produced by UNHCR and some provided by Google.