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Diplomacy in Action

More IO Highlights

#COP21: Behind the Scenes at the U.S. Center

DipNote (Nov. 28): Throughout the two weeks of COP21, the State Department invites you to engage with prominent voices on U.S. climate action at the U.S. Center. Located at the COP21 venue in Paris, the U.S. Center allows the public and online audiences to learn about the actions the United States is taking to combat climate change. Full Text»

The Stakes Could Not Be Higher

DipNote (Nov. 25): UNAIDS has demonstrated that we have a five-year window of opportunity to change the trajectory of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. The UNAIDS Fast-Track approach set ambitious targets for countries to reach by 2020. If we reach these targets, through a data-driven approach focused on geographic areas and populations with the greatest burden, we can avert 21 million AIDS-related deaths and 28 million new HIV infections by 2030. The stakes could not be higher. The time to act is now. Full Text»

The Battle for Zionism at the UN: Marking 40 Years Since the Historic Speech of the Honorable Chaim Herzog

Secretary Kerry (Nov. 11): "It was a bitter irony that this resolution against Zionism was originally a resolution against racism and colonialism, two evils the condemnation of which could have easily been voted for in this body. But that journey to reasonableness was detoured by a willful ignorance of history and truth." Full Text»

The United States' Reelection to the UNESCO Executive Board

Secretary Kerry (Nov. 11): "I am very pleased the United States has been reelected to the Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). As I remarked during my visit to UNESCO last month, we believe that the organization’s mission to “build peace in the minds of men and women” is as important today as it was 70 years ago, when UNESCO was founded." Full Text»

UNESCO National Statement

Deputy Secretary Blinken (Nov. 6): "I’m grateful for this opportunity to affirm our candidacy for reelection to UNESCO’s Executive Board and to reiterate our nation’s belief in the undeniably important role that UNESCO plays in upholding our collective peace and security." Full Text»

Date: 11/06/2015 Description: Deputy Secretary Blinken Delivers Remarks at the UNESCO General Conference Side-Event Education to Prevent and Counter Violent Extremism. - State Dept Image

UNESCO General Conference Side-Event Education to Prevent and Counter Violent Extremism

Deputy Secretary Blinken (Nov. 6): "By arming young minds with a world perspective rooted in respect, social justice, diversity, and critical thinking, we can counter radicalization as it arises and even prevent its growth in the first place. Nearly 70 years ago, at the very first meeting of UNESCO, Archibald MacLeish—who was a member of the American delegation—inscribed this mission into UNESCO’s founding charter. 'Since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that defense of peace must be constructed,' he wrote. I would only make a slight addendum and add 'women' to the inscription." Full Text»

Assistant Secretary Crocker Travels to France and Switzerland

Media Note (Nov. 2): Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Sheba Crocker will travel to Paris, France and Geneva, Switzerland, November 2-6. Full Text»

Fighting for the Rights of Truth Tellers

DipNote (Nov. 2): In 2014, more than 200 journalists were imprisoned and at least 61 journalists were killed. Worldwide, only one in ten crimes committed against media workers over the past decade has led to a conviction. That is why the United Nations has declared today, November 2, International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists. Full Text»

United States Welcomes UN Security Council Statement on Burundi

Spokesperson Kirby (Oct. 28): "Like the African Union’s communiqué of October 17, the Security Council statement put particular stress on the urgency of convening an inclusive inter-Burundian dialogue, among the government and peaceful stakeholders within and outside the country." Full Text»

United Nations Day

Presidential Proclamation (Oct. 23: In 1945, in the shadow of a world war and the face of an uncertain future, 51 founding nations joined in common purpose to establish the United Nations and codify its mission to maintain international peace and security, encourage global cooperation, and promote universal respect for human rights. More»

U.S. Commitment to UNESCO

Date: 2015 Description: UNESCO logo © UN ImageSecretary Kerry (Oct. 18): "The United States – a founding member of this organization – remains committed to strengthening its role in promoting peace and security. And it’s why we so greatly value UNESCO as a platform for cooperation with you – our partners – in advancing so many of the goals that we share as nations." Full Text» DipNote»

UN Security Council Open Debate on Women, Peace, and Security

UN Ambassador Power (Oct. 13): "Fifteen years ago, this Council passed a resolution recognizing that the inclusion of women’s voices in peace and security decision-making leads to more equitable, sustainable, and resilient results. This is not a theory – it is a fact." Full Text» Fact Sheet»

Key U.S. Outcomes at the UN Human Rights Council 30th Session

Oct. 8: The outcomes of the 30th Session of the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva underscored the importance of robust U.S. engagement at the Council, where the United States continues to work with countries from all regions to address urgent human rights concerns. Fact Sheet»

U.S. Priorities at the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Assistant Secretary Crocker (Sept. 17): "Since this is the 70th anniversary year of the UN that it would be interesting to take a step back for a minute and talk about the continued salience of the UN system that was established and launched in San Francisco in June of 1945, including a little discussion of where that system is fraying or not meeting today’s needs and challenges. Today’s most urgent diplomatic needs, I think, clearly remind us of the continued relevance of the United Nations and the larger international system." Full Text» More»

Top Reasons To Care About #UNGA This Year

Date: 09/16/2015 Description: DipNote: UNGA: United Nations, 70 Years Strong © UN ImageDipNote (Sept. 15): Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Tracey A. Jacobson outlines U.S. priorities for the 70th UN General Assembly, focusing on U.S. commitment to four key areas: strengthening multilateral peace operations, countering terrorism and violent extremism, sustainable development, and climate change. More»

U.S. Statement to the IAEA Board of Governors on Syria

Charge d'Affaires, Ambassador Henry S. Ensher (Sept. 10): "The Board found Syria to be in noncompliance with its NPT safeguards agreement more than four years ago. As confirmed in the Director General’s latest report, it has been more than seven years since Syria last engaged substantively with the Agency regarding these issues. Meanwhile, Syria has also disregarded the Board’s call for it to sign and bring into force an Additional Protocol. In fact, the Asad regime’s continued refusal to cooperate with the Agency is cause for increased attention and urgency, not less." Full Text»

U.S. Statement to the IAEA Board of Governors on Iran

Deputy Chief of Mission Andrew J. Schofer (Sept. 9): "The IAEA continues to perform its verification mission in Iran with characteristic professionalism, commitment, and impartiality. The IAEA's work, including efforts to address concerns about the possible military dimensions of Iran's nuclear program, is a critical component in the process of ensuring that Iran's nuclear program is exclusively peaceful." Full Text»

Outcome of the Climate Finance Ministerial

Secretary Kerry (Sept. 6): "This weekend in Paris, the United States and Switzerland hosted senior officials from 18 developed countries to discuss our collaborative efforts to scale up climate finance for developing nations, and to provide increased transparency on our progress… The ambitious and durable agreement we aim to conclude later this year in Paris must be consistent with economic realities in the next decade and beyond." Full Text»

WSIS+10: A Look Back To Move Forward
Date: 06/10/2014 Description: DipNote: WSIS+10 Opening Ceremony, Geneva, Switzerland, June 10, 2014  © [ITU Photo/C. Montesano CasillasDipnote (Aug. 24): For the last few months (though, to be fair, the hard work really took place over the last 10 years), my colleagues and I have been taking part in a global review process that will culminate at the high-level meeting at the UN General Assembly in December. This event marks an important milestone in the history of the global digital economy -- the culmination of the 10 year review of the World Summit on the Information Society or “WSIS.” Full Text»

World Humanitarian Day
Secretary Kerry (Aug. 19):
"Today we salute the unsung heroes who venture out to some of the most dangerous places on earth and risk their lives to save others. Through dark days, aid workers find ways to bring light to communities all over the world – and they do it with grace and grit, fearlessness and determination." Full Text»

Alleged Abuses by UN Peacekeepers in the Central African Republic
Deputy Spokesperson Mark Toner (Aug. 14):
"The United States is profoundly shocked and dismayed by allegations and incidents of serious misconduct by UN peacekeepers serving in the UN Multidimensional Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA). The most recent of those allegations includes rape and civilian casualties during an arrest operation in early August. These allegations raise serious concerns about the mission’s discipline and command. They must be investigated immediately and thoroughly, with appropriate punishment and accountability for the perpetrators." Full Text»

Remarks at the Security Council Stakeout following Consultations on Alleged Abuses by Peacekeepers in the Central African Republic
U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power (Aug. 13):
"We just had an exceptional meeting of the Security Council, an unusual meeting of the Security Council, with the Secretary-General to discuss sexual exploitation and other forms of abuse that is alleged to be occurring in peacekeeping missions… It was a meeting in which a great deal of horror, outrage, a sense of collective failure, were all expressed. We were horrified by the allegations of rape and killing of civilians by members of MINUSCA. And it should of course go without saying that these allegations need to be investigated swiftly and impartially and that any perpetrators of such crimes have to be punished." Full Text»

Remarks at a UN Security Council Briefing on Ebola
Date: 08/13/2015 Description: Ambassador Samantha Power delivers remarks in the UN Security Council. - State Dept ImageU.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power (Aug. 13): "Let me begin with what we all know: we have made tremendous progress toward stopping this deadly outbreak. According to WHO, in the week that ended August 9th, only three new cases of Ebola were reported in the affected countries – one in Sierra Leone and two in Guinea. Three cases in a week – across three countries… But it would be a serious mistake to take our eye off the current outbreak, or to think that, when we end it, our job will be done. So today, I want to briefly set out three steps the region and the international community must take to address this outbreak and help prevent future ones from reaching such devastating proportions." Full Text»

Closing Keynote Remarks at the Youth Assembly at the United Nations
U.S. Special Advisor for Global Youth Issues Andy Rabens (Aug. 7):
"Now I’m excited to have the chance to talk with you all today, nearly 600 delegates from over 30 countries, about the opportunities in front us to put our stamp on the Sustainable Development Goals and to embrace a collective vision of the world as it could be – a world that we will shortly inherit and a world that we have a historic opportunity to help shape." Full Text»

Syrian Crisis: U.S. Efforts and Assistance
Fact Sheet (Aug. 7):
For those affected by the crisis inside Syria and in neighboring countries, the United States is providing healthcare, shelter, food, clean water, protection – including activities to prevent and respond to gender-based violence, and educational opportunities for refugee children. U.S. assistance supports the activities of UN agencies – including the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the World Food Program (WFP), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) – and numerous non-governmental organizations, in Syria and neighboring countries. Full Text»

Remarks by the President and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon After Bilateral Meeting
Date: 08/04/2015 Description: President Obama and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon After Bilateral Meeting - State Dept ImagePresident Barack Obama and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (Aug. 4): "As we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the United Nations, we can take great satisfaction in the success of the institution in resolving conflicts, in moving forward through its agencies on a whole range of development issues that are helping vulnerable peoples around the world. At the same time, we are in a period in which the demands placed, the burdens on the United Nations have never been greater." Full Text»

New Humanitarian Assistance for Iraq
Media Note (Aug. 3):
Secretary of State John Kerry announced today at the Gulf Cooperation Council Summit in Qatar that the United States is providing nearly $62 million in additional humanitarian assistance to Iraqis who have been affected by violence and are in urgent need of assistance from the international community… A range of UN and international non-governmental agencies are receiving the funding, including the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and other international and nongovernmental organizations. Full Text»

Conclusion of Negotiations on the Post-2015 Development Agenda

Secretary Kerry (Aug. 2): "The goals and aspirations conveyed through these negotiations expand on the successes seen under the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), established by the global community 15 years ago…This bold new agenda of sustainable development goals features transformative objectives for the next 15 years: eradicating extreme poverty; ensuring environmental sustainability and conservation; advancing gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls; and building peaceful, well-governed, and economically prosperous societies to ensure that we leave no one behind." Full Text»

U.S. Statement at the Closing of the Intergovernmental Negotiations on the Post-2015 Development Agenda
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (Aug. 2): " We are pleased to join consensus on this visionary, transformative and ambitious agenda. Like any effort such as this, we recognize that it represents a fine political balance and includes compromises – and like others, we think there are things in this document that can be improved. At a later date, we will provide additional views on the text…The ambition reflected in this outcome and the conclusion of these deliberations reaffirms the transformative nature of the multilateral system, and underscores the power of what is possible through collective endeavor." Full Text»

U.S. Statement on Goals and Targets During Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (July 28):
"As we near the end of negotiations, we think it is important to present to our heads of state, and ask them to commit to, an agenda with targets that are as clear, compelling, and technically sound as possible, and thus we are uncomfortable with a list of suggested edits attached as an annex to one of the chapters, implying the agenda has not been fully reviewed and rationalized." Full Text»

U.S. Statement on Means Of Implementation During Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (July 28):
"As we reflect on the bright spots of our negotiations thus far this past week, we note the considerable agreement around this room in the quality, strength, and level of ambition of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda. We compromised collectively on issues of great importance to each of us individually there, and we continue to appreciate and hope to build upon the collaborative spirit that made it possible." Full Text»

Remarks at a Meeting on UN Peacekeeping at the 69th Regiment Armory
Date: 07/28/2015 Description: U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power with U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Martin Dempsey. © USUN ImageU.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Power (July 28): "To be sure, UN peacekeeping is just one tool in a diverse kit that we must strengthen to address the complex threats confronting us today, together with others such as sustained prevention efforts and special political missions. But if peacekeepers can learn from these practices of the 69th – their mission can become a more effective part of advancing our shared security. And the presence of the United States’ highest ranking military officer here today is testament to how important we think it is to get this enterprise right." Full Text»

Iran Nuclear Agreement: House Foreign Affairs Committee Hearing
Secretary Kerry (July 28):
"We are convinced that the plan that we have developed with five other nations accomplishes the task that President Obama set out, which is to close off the four pathways to a bomb… The IAEA will be continuously monitoring their centrifuge production, as centrifuge -- so centrifuges cannot be diverted to a covert facility. For the next 25 years, the IAEA will be continuously monitoring uranium from the point that it’s produced all the way through production so that it cannot be diverted to another facility." Full Text»

Remarks to the People of Africa
President Obama (July 28):
"I’m grateful for this opportunity to speak to the representatives of more than one billion people of the great African continent… The world must do more to help as well. This fall at the United Nations, I will host a summit to secure new commitments to strengthen international support for peacekeeping, including here in Africa. And building on commitments that originated here in the AU, we’ll work to develop a new partnership between the U.N. and the AU that can provide reliable support for AU peace operations." Full Text»

U.S. Statement on Follow Up and Review During Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (July 24):
"The political declaration provides the vision; the goals and targets set out the key milestones for us as protagonists; and the means of implementation provides the narrative arc of how we get there. It is our follow up and review processes that over the next 15 years will fill in that outline with the actual story – how it happened, what successes and challenges we encountered, how we adjusted when the story took a twist we didn’t expect." Full Text»

Meeting of the Advisory Committee on International Postal and Delivery Services
(July 24):
On August 6, the Department of State’s Advisory Committee on International Postal and Delivery Services will meet to consider issues related to terminal dues, customs treatment of mail, and recent developments in the Universal Postal Union. Full Text»

You + U.S. Youth Observer Program = Your Voice at the United Nations
Date: 10/30/2014 Description: UN Flag Flutters Outside a Building in Germany - State Dept ImageDipnote (July 23): Recognizing the value of youth voices and participation to the UN system, since 2012, the U.S. Department of State has partnered with the United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA) to designate a U.S. Youth Observer to the UN. The Department recently announced the opening of the 2015-16 application period which runs until August 4, 2015. Full Text»

Iran Nuclear Agreement Review: Opening Remarks Before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee
Secretary Kerry (July 23):
"We really do the appreciate the chance to discuss with you the comprehensive plan that we and our P5+1 partners have developed with Iran regarding the future of its nuclear program. And let me emphasize to everybody here this isn't just the United States of America. These are other nuclear powers: France, Britain, Russia, China. They have a pretty good understanding of this field and of the challenges, and I appreciate the way in which they and Germany, which was the plus-one, all came together, all contributed, all were part of this debate." Full Text»

U.S. Statement on Means of Implementation During Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (July 23):
We are pleased to have the opportunity to address this essential topic today – and thus to take head on the critical nexus between our text and the successful outcome of the Financing for Development Conference in Addis Ababa last week. As we have said many times before, we strongly agree with others that this agenda will stand or fall on the strength of our efforts on implementation." Full Text»

U.S. Statement on Goals and Targets During Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (July 22):
"It is impressive to reflect on just how far we have collectively come on goals and targets. After three years of broad-based consultations and rigorous evaluation of the best evidence available, we have defined an ambitious blueprint. We embrace the 17 goals and the comprehensive vision for sustainable development that they comprise." Full Text»

General/Political Declaration Statement During Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (July 21):
 "Our process, from the beginning, has benefited from a robust and diverse discourse reflective of a great many voices across regions and sectors, and we thank colleagues for the richness of the debate, as it is helping us hone in in on a clear and concise narrative for sustainable development, one that builds upon the MDGs, brings an end to extreme poverty, ensures environmental conservation, and focuses on the most vulnerable first." Full Text»

Explanation of Vote at a UN Security Council Vote on Resolution 2231 on Iran Non-proliferation
U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power (July 20): "
Today we have adopted a UN Security Council resolution enshrining the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, JCPOA, agreed to six days ago in Vienna. By now, many are familiar with the basic tenets of the deal, which, if implemented, would cut off all pathways to fissile material for a nuclear weapon for the Islamic Republic of Iran, while putting in place a rigorous inspection and transparency regime to verify Iran’s compliance." Full Text»

Annual U.S. Youth Observer at the United Nations General Assembly
(July 17):
The U.S. Department of State and the United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA) are pleased to announce the start of the application phase for the U.S. Youth Observer to the United Nations General Assembly. Full Text»

Press Availability on Nuclear Deal With Iran
Secretary John Kerry (July 14): "
Today, in announcing a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the United States, our P5+1 and EU partners, and Iran have taken a measureable step away from the prospect of nuclear proliferation, towards transparency and cooperation. It is a step away from the specter of conflict and towards the possibility of peace." Full Text»

Big Data? Small Data? We Need An “All of the Above” Strategy For Development Data

Date: 07/13/2015 Description: DipNote: Stateless Rohingya gather at a refugee camp in in Sittwe, Rakhine State, Burma.  - State Dept ImageDipNote (July 13): No single approach will close these gaps. We need greater investment in national statistical offices to track basic national indicators. We need to help governments better collect and open their own administrative data to improve transparency and optimise their programmes. We also need to find ways to join the big data sets such as those generated by mobile phones and social media to other small data sets to complement and fill gaps. Full Text»

World Population Day
Secretary Kerry (July 11):
World Population Day isn’t just another day we mark on the calendar. It is a reminder of our common responsibility to build a more sustainable and just future. I remember leading the U.S. Senate delegation to the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo. Since Cairo, the tide’s been turning. According to the final report on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the maternal mortality ratio has been cut nearly in half. Full Text»

Statement on the International Ebola Recovery Conference at the UN
U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power (July 10):
During the single week I visited the affected region last October, hundreds of new cases were reported. In contrast, during the final week of June 2015, only 21 new cases were reported. That progress could never have been achieved without the valiant efforts of health professionals, burial and contact tracing teams, epidemiologists, and other front-line responders like the young man I met in Sierra Leone. But we have not made it to zero yet. Full Text»

Key U.S. Outcomes at the UN Human Rights Council 29th Session
(July 9):
The outcomes of the 29th Session of the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva underscored the importance of robust U.S. engagement at the Council, where the United States continues to work with countries from all regions to address urgent human rights concerns worldwide. Full Text»

Challenge: Violent Extremism and Youth Radicalization
Date: 07/07/2015 Description: DipNote: Jackson Dougan, U.S. Youth Observer at the United Nations, attends the Lockdown in Tibet'' Human Rights Council Side Event at the United Nations Office at Geneva. © USUN ImageDipNote (July 7): In June I attended meetings at the Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, and UNESCO world headquarters in Paris, France. The status of women’s rights, LGBT rights, and religious freedom were discussed at the Human Rights Council, with special emphasis on progress made toward promoting gender equality and empowering women worldwide. Full Text»

Designation of the San Antonio Missions, Texas as UNESCO World Heritage Site
(July 6):
The Department of State welcomes yesterday’s decision by UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee to inscribe the San Antonio Missions in Texas, a series of four missions making up a U.S. National Historical Park, plus the Alamo, as a UNESCO World Heritage site. This prestigious designation is a global recognition of the site’s outstanding universal value. The San Antonio Missions become the 23rd U.S. site on the World Heritage List, which includes the Grand Canyon and the Statue of Liberty. Full Text»

New U.S. Humanitarian Assistance to Respond to Syria Crisis
(June 25):
The United States today announced more than $360 million in additional life-saving assistance for those affected by the war in Syria… The funding supports the operations of the United Nations, including the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), as well as other international and non-governmental organizations. It will provide shelter, water, medical care, food, protection, and other necessities to millions of people suffering inside Syria and nearly four million refugees from Syria in the region. Full Text»

U.S. Statement, Follow-up and Review Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (June 24):
First, let me just begin by underscoring the vital importance of this piece of Agenda—and why it matters so greatly that we reach the strongest possible outcome on follow up and review. Simply put, only through reaching the right balance for monitoring progress at the global, regional and national levels, will we know whether our efforts are adding up for our citizens and for the planet we inhabit. Follow up and review enables us to track what works—and, just as importantly—to adjust and accelerate and redouble our efforts when we’re falling short. Full Text»

U.S. Statement: Goals and Targets Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (June 23):
 As the draft Political Declaration notes, the proposed goals and targets renew and improve upon the critical ambitions of the MDGs, but notably and rightly take our ambitions further. They now include strong goals in previously underserved or overlooked areas - gender equality, peace and governance, sustained and inclusive growth, sustainable energy, oceans - with the potential for long-term transformative impact. The integration of social, economic, and environmental dimensions reflected in the 17 proposed goals provides us a welcome and ambitious framework for accelerating and achieving significant progress on sustainable development. Full Text»

Remarks on the Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiations
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (June 22):
We welcome this zero draft as a good starting point that can serve as a foundation for a productive and ultimately successful negotiation. We look forward to engaging over these final weeks to make the most of our collective opportunity: to achieve an ambitious and actionable global consensus on sustainable development, one that brings an end to poverty, that is inclusive and leaves no one behind, and that ensures environmental sustainability. These must remain the core of the agenda, and we appreciate very much your central focus on these ambitions within the zero draft. Full Text»

Reasons To Care About World Refugee Day
Date: 06/19/2015 Description: DipNote: Displaced child stands next to his tent in Kabul, Afghanistan - State Dept ImageDipNote (June 19): Each year on June 20, we commemorate World Refugee Day to salute the courage and resilience of the world's refugees and displaced persons. This year, however, it takes on a particularly special meaning. According to the just-released Global Trends Report by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), nearly 60 million people have fled their homes as refugees, internally displaced people or asylum seekers. It is a staggering number – equivalent to one in every 122 people on this planet. Now, more than ever, the world’s refugees and displaced people need our help. Full Text»

U.S. Pledges Additional Humanitarian Assistance for People Affected by the South Sudan Crisis
(June 16):
The United States announced more than $133 million in additional humanitarian assistance today in response to a surge in conflict and rapidly deteriorating humanitarian conditions in South Sudan over the last two months. The announcement was made in Geneva, Switzerland, by a U.S. delegation… at an international conference on the humanitarian crisis in South Sudan and its impact on the region. Full Text»

Testimony to the House Foreign Affairs Committee
U.S. Permanent Representative to the UN Samantha Power (June 16):
"As the members of this Committee know, we are living in a time of daunting global crises. In the last year alone, Russia continued to train, arm, and fight alongside separatists in eastern Ukraine; a deadly epidemic spread across West Africa; and monstrous terrorist groups seized territory across the Middle East and North Africa, committing unspeakable atrocities. These are the kinds of threats that the United Nations exists to prevent and address." Full Text»

UNHRC 29th Session: Agenda Item 2, General Debate
US Mission Geneva Eric Richardson (June 15):
"The United States appreciates the High Commissioner’s report. We welcome continued engagement of OHCHR on human rights challenges throughout the world. We especially look forward to the Council’s focus on women and the all-day discussion on eliminating violence and participation in power and decision making. This session also provides opportunities for meaningful engagement on discrimination against women and girls; sexual and reproductive health services and reproductive rights; child, early, and forced marriage; and many other topics." Full Text»

Combatting Terrorism: Looking Over the Horizon
Under Secretary Sarah Sewall (June 15):
"Violent extremism’s growth over the last decade is an extremely dangerous and destabilizing phenomenon. It is essential that the world mobilize against such backward-looking intolerance and cruelty, which threatens humanity’s moral, political, and economic progress." Full Text»

Education is Essential to Combat Child Labor
Date: 06/12/2015 Description: A child works in a brick factory - State Dept ImageDipNote (June 12): Today, June 12, the global community commemorates World Day Against Child Labor with a focus on the essential role of education in combating child labor. I was honored to be in the audience just a day before World Day Against Child Labor, when Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi addressed a special sitting of the 104th Session of the International Labor Conference in Geneva. His advocacy, along with the efforts of civil society, was essential to the development of ILO Convention 182 on the Worst Forms of Child Labor, now adopted by 177 of 189 ILO member nations, including the United States. Full Text»

South Sudan Government Expels Top UN Aid Official - Why It Matters
Date: 06/18/2015 Description: Children with gourds wait to gather spilled grains from air-drops of World Food Programme aircraft. © UN Photo/Eskinder DebebeDpiNote (June 11): News that the Government of South Sudan expelled the United Nations’ top humanitarian official in the country on May 29 has sparked outrage. The UN Secretary General, the UN Security Council, the U.S. government, the alliance of U.S.-based NGOs InterAction, the South Sudanese NGO Community Empowerment for Progress Organization, the European Union and many other governments voiced condemnation of the action to expel Toby Lanzer. Full Text»

Cultural Heritage: A Powerful Unifying Force at Risk Like Never Before
Date: 06/10/2015 Description: Rubble fills Sharia al-Sweiqa, inside the Old City of Aleppo, Syria, a listed UNESCO World Heritage Site © UN ImageDipNote (June 10): In many ways, cultural heritage defines what it means to be human. It is a tangible reminder of the beauty and accomplishment of the ancient civilizations, our common origins, and our shared history and identity. It inspires a sense of belonging and is a source of pride. Culture has the exceptional potential to be used as a tool for expression and peaceful cooperation, as it reminds us of the contributions and experiences of humanity. Full Text»

United States Welcomes UN-facilitated Consultations on Yemen
(June 8): 
The United States welcomes the June 6 announcement that the UN-facilitated consultations among Yemeni stakeholders will begin in Geneva on June 14. We reiterate the call of the Security Council for Yemenis to attend these talks in good faith and without preconditions. Full Text»

World Oceans Day
Date: 06/07/2015 Description: World Oceans Day photo - State Dept ImageSecretary Kerry (June 7): "World Oceans Day, June 8, reminds of us the importance of our oceans and maintaining their health. As we continue working and developing on and near the water, we cannot forget the impacts on our ocean – and we need to work vigilantly to protect it." Full Text»

World Environment Day
Date: 06/04/2015 Description: World Environment Day photo - State Dept ImageSecretary Kerry (June 4): "Every person on Earth has a role to play in protecting the environment we share—on World Environment Day, June 5, and every day. Every one of us has a responsibility to ensure that future generations are able to enjoy the same safe and healthy planet that we inherited." Full Text»

Condemning Expulsion From South Sudan of UN Deputy Special Representative
(June 2):
The United States condemns the Government of South Sudan’s decision to expel the United Nations Deputy Special Representative in South Sudan and Humanitarian Coordinator of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), Toby Lanzer. Full Text»

Assistant Secretary Crocker Travel to Mexico City
(June 1):
Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Sheba Crocker will travel to Mexico City, Mexico on June 3 for trilateral consultations on multilateral issues with her counterparts from the Governments of Mexico and Canada. Full Text»

Moving Forward to Strengthen the NPT
Date: 06/01/2015 Description: An aerial view of United Nations Headquarters, New York, NY © UN Image/Andrea BrizziDipnote (June 1): In diplomacy, as in life, sometimes hard work pays immediate dividends, and sometimes the results don’t materialize like you hoped. Such was the case for delegations from parties to the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, which spent the month of May in New York, working arduously to find ways to strengthen the NPT. Despite best efforts, the 2015 NPT Review Conference ended without consensus on a final document. Full Text»

Commemoration of International Day of UN Peacekeepers
Secretary Kerry (May 29):
"Today we honor the service and sacrifice of the courageous men and women serving under the flag of the United Nations with the mission of peace. That mission, which dates back nearly 70 years, is central to the purpose of the United Nations and indispensable to the peace and security of the globe." Full Text»

Under Secretary Richard Stengel Travel to Paris
(May 29):
Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Richard Stengel will travel to Paris, France from June 1 – June 3. A principal focus of their meetings in Paris will be discussions with international partners on the trafficking of looted antiquities. While in Paris, they will meet at UNESCO with Director-General Irina Bokova and participate in a roundtable with stakeholders to discuss measures that the international community can take to cut off trafficking in antiquities, especially from Iraq and Syria. Full Text»

Post-2015 Session on Follow-up and Review
U.S. Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (May 18): 
"As we have all noted here many times, the success of this agenda will rise or fall based on the strength of our implementation – and this, in turn, will depend on the strength of our platforms and mechanisms for monitoring progress and facilitating accountability. Thus we greatly appreciate our conversation this week. We will speak today to two key elements of our follow up and review process: 1) its underlying principles, and 2) its institutional architecture." Full Text

Assistant Secretary Crocker's Travel to Rome and Vatican City
(May 22)
: Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Sheba Crocker traveled to Rome and Vatican City, May 24–26, to attend the World Food Program’s (WFP) Executive Board meeting and for consultations with counterparts and Rome-based international organizations. Full Text»

Protecting Press Freedom Across the Globe
Date: 05/22/2015 Description: Ambassador Power Hosts Panel Discussion on Press Freedom © USUN ImageDipnote (May 22: Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states, in part, that everyone has the right "to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers." Despite this clear articulation of the universal importance of freedom of the press, journalists around the world are targeted and censored, threatened, and killed just for exercising their right to free expression. Full Text»

Towards a New Global Education Agenda
Date: 05/21/2015 Description: USAID Senior Advisor for International Education Christie Vilsack visits with primary grade students in Malawi.  © Photo courtesy of Christie Vilsack, USAIDDipnote (May 21): In a small first grade class at Mikombe Elementary School in rural Malawi, a girl named Martha is receiving the opportunity of a lifetime -- she is learning to read in her local language, Chichewa. This might not sound like an incredible feat, but for many children in developing countries around the world, especially girls, literacy is elusive. Poor education systems, untrained teachers and a lack of textbooks in local languages are just a few of the obstacles that hinder education for all in countries like Malawi. Full Text» 

Inclusive Education and the World Education Forum 2015
Date: 05/20/2015 Description: Young students color worksheets at a school in Kingston, Jamaica - State Dept ImageDipnote (May 20): "I’m happy to say that thanks to laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (whose 25th and 40th anniversaries we celebrate this year), the discrimination I experienced as a child is no longer lawful. We continue to work to improve access to education for students with disabilities in the United States, so that inclusive education is not the exception it was when I was growing up, and students with disabilities can obtain the skills and qualifications they need to be competitive in the labor market." Full Text »

Condemning Escalating Violence in South Sudan
(May 20)
: The United States condemns the intensified fighting and violence in Unity, Upper Nile, and Jonglei states in South Sudan by the Sudan People’s Liberation Army, the armed opposition, and forces led by General Johnson Olony that have led to massive new displacements and had a devastating effect on civilians. We call on all sides to silence the guns immediately, permit the UN Mission in South Sudan to investigate the sites of all alleged human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law, and allow all humanitarian workers immediate, free and unobstructed access to conflicted-affected communities regardless of their locations. Full Text»

#WorldEducationForum: Building A Powerful New Education Agenda To Transform Lives
Date: 05/19/2015 Description: Girls walk to school in India - State Dept ImageDipnote (May 19): While more children than ever are in primary school, a goal set by the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2000, the world needs to continue to push ahead because inequities remain. Too many children are in school, but aren’t learning. Too many children are out of school, not learning. And, too many children -- especially marginalized groups defined by socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, gender and disability -- are not transitioning to secondary school, much less vocational or higher education, to gain the literacy and other skills needed to be escape poverty and become global citizens. Full Text»

An Open and Secure Internet: We Must Have Both
Date: 05/18/2015 Description: Secretary of State John Kerry delivers a speech about Internet freedom and cybersecurity on May 18, 2015, before an audience at Korea University in Seoul, Republica of Korea. - State Dept Image(May 18):  In a speech at Korea University Secretary Kerry discussed the importance of an open and secure Internet. In his remarks, Secretary Kerry underscored that the United States believes that the Internet should be open and accessible to everyone. Full Text»


Commemorating International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia
Secretary Kerry (May 16):
"International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia is a call to action, a plea to stand with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex communities (LGBTI) across the world and reaffirm our commitment to the equality and dignity of all people, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Discrimination against LGBTI persons must end -- and it must end now." Full Text»

150th Anniversary of the International Telecommunication Union
Secretary Kerry (May 15):
"The United States congratulates the International Telecommunication Union on 150 years as an influential and important international body for the coordination of global telecommunications. From the spread of telegraphs and telephones to the rapid growth of radiocommunications, which enabled satellites and today’s mobile networks, the ITU has continually provided a forum for discussion, debate, and collaboration of international telecommunications issues." Full Text»

Universal Periodic Review of the United States
Date: 05/11/2015 Description: U.S. Ambassador to the UN Human Rights Council Keith Harper, Universal Periodic Review © UN ImageU.S. Ambassador to the UN Human Rights Council Keith Harper (May 11): "I am pleased to introduce the United States delegation for our country’s second Universal Periodic Review. We believe that every nation benefits from having a mirror held before it. Every nation has challenges, and can reach greater heights by participating seriously in the UPR. This process provides us the vital opportunity to self-assess, to listen to others, and to more effectively address the concerns of individuals in our country." Full Text»

Statement on the World Health Organization's Announcement on Liberia
Acting Department Spokesperson Marie Harf (May 9): "
The United States congratulates the people of Liberia on reaching the important milestone marked by the World Health Organization's announcement that the current outbreak of Ebola in Liberia has ended after having gone 42 days without any new cases. This achievement is a tribute to the Government of Liberia’s rapid and sustained response in combating and containing the disease, in collaboration with the international community." Full Text»

U.S. Condemns Violence in Sudan
Acting Deputy Department Spokesperson Jeff Rathke (May 8):
"The United States is gravely concerned about the continuing fighting in Sudan’s Darfur region and Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile states. Actions by the Sudanese government and armed opposition groups, especially following the return of some elements of the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), have displaced countless civilians this year and exacerbated an already serious humanitarian crisis." Full Text»

Why Multilateralism Matters - Remarks to Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce
Date: 05/24/2015 Description: Permanent Representative to the UN Pamela Hamamoto © USUN ImagePermanent Representative to the UN and other International Organizations in Geneva Pamela Hamamoto (June 2, 2015) Since I arrived in Geneva almost a year ago, there have been quite a number of high profile issues that have kept us busy, including working with the World Health Organization on the response to the Ebola crisis and repeated visits by Secretary Kerry – including this past weekend – as part of the negotiations with Iran. Full Text»

Opening Remarks at the World Food Program Executive Board
Assistant Secretary Sheba Crocker (May 24):
"We’re here today because the World Food Program is a valued partner for each of our countries. I would like to begin by thanking the women and men of WFP for the inspiring contribution they make every day to feeding people in desperate need around the world. I saw this first hand in the wake of the devastating 2004 Asian tsunami, when I was working on the UN’s recovery effort. WFP was at the forefront of the response effort in Aceh and other hard-hit places. Today, WFP is on the front lines in places like Syria, Yemen, Nepal, Somalia, and not least in Ebola-affected West Africa, where we are pleased to see a fragile but improving situation." Full Text»

U.S. Ambassador to the UN Food and Agriculture Agencies to Lead Journalists on a Visit to Tajikistan
(May 7):
Ambassador David Lane, the U.S. Representative to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Agencies in Rome, will travel to Tajikistan from May 11-16, 2015. Together with U.S. Ambassador to Tajikistan Susan Elliott, he will visit rural communities and observe how the United States and the UN Food and Agriculture Agencies collaborate to support rural households, farmers, businesses and government officials to improve food security and nutrition and promote agricultural development in Tajikistan. Full Text»

United States Announces $68 Million in Humanitarian Assistance to Yemen
(May 6):
Secretary Kerry announced the United States is providing more than $68 million to help humanitarian organizations meet the needs of nearly 16 million people in need of assistance in Yemen, including 300,000 newly internally displaced persons. The funds will support the activities of the World Food Program, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, the UN Children’s Fund, and other organizations, providing food, water, shelter, medical care, protection, and other assistance. Fact Sheet»

Commemorating World Press Freedom Day
Secretary Kerry (May 5):
"On May 3rd, we honored journalists who defend democratic ideals through their commitment to discovering and telling the truth. In doing so, we also paid tribute journalism itself, a profession to that is essential to good governance and the functioning of democracy. This is a critically important time to acknowledge the contributions of journalists. As the Committee to Protect Journalists recently reported, this is the “most deadly and dangerous period for journalists in recent history.” From violent extremists and criminal gangs who abduct and kill reporters to authoritarian governments that persecute them, press freedom is under attack." Full Text»

The Organization of Work for the Second Part of the Resumed 69th Session Before the Fifth Committee
U.S. Representative to the UN for UN Management and Reform Isobel Coleman (May 4):
"I would like to take this opportunity to provide some preliminary comments regarding the issues that this Committee will consider in the weeks ahead. My delegation remains committed to this Committee’s vital role in closely scrutinizing the requests of the Secretary-General to ensure that the peacekeeping budgets reflect actual requirements, are driven by realistic planning assumptions, and incorporate prudent management initiatives. In reviewing the budget requests, we commend the Secretary-General’s continued efforts to identify efficiencies." Full Text»

Welcoming Christiane Amanpour, New Goodwill Ambassador and Voice for Press Freedom
Date: 05/03/2015 Description: Christiane Amanpour speaks at ceremony where she is named UNESCO Goodwil Ambassador for Freedom of Expression and Journalist Safety.  © [UNESCO PhotoDipNote (May 3): Seeking to heighten its work advancing human rights, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has appointed internationally recognized CNN reporter Christiane Amanpour as a new Goodwill Ambassador for Freedom of Expression and Journalist Safety. UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova and U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Heather Higginbottom participated in the inauguration ceremony in Paris last Wednesday. "The simple fact is that journalists cannot do their jobs if they are threatened or under attack," Deputy Secretary Higginbottom stated during the ceremony. Full Text»

Highlights of State Department and USAID Efforts to Support Press and Media Freedom
Fact Sheet (May 1):
On World Press Freedom Day, the United States pays special honor to the importance of media freedom – a crucial element of freedom of expression – at home and abroad. A diverse and independent press is crucial to holding governments accountable and sustaining democracy around the world… The U.S. Government has also brought media freedom issues to the fore at the United Nations and in regional multilateral forums. Full Text»

Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources Heather Higginbottom Travel to Paris for Jazz Day
Washington, DC (Apr. 28): 
Deputy Secretary Higginbottom will travel to Paris to mark the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization's (UNESCO) fourth annual International Jazz Day. During an April 29 reception to honor visiting jazz legends, the Deputy Secretary will make remarks highlighting the American origins of jazz and its evolution into an international language of peace, tolerance, and understanding. Full Text»

Remarks at the 2015 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference
Date: 04/27/2015 Description: Secretary Kerry participates in the 2015 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons at the United Nations. - State Dept ImageSecretary of State John Kerry (Apr. 27): "I am pleased to stand here today representing a President and an Administration that is committed to the vision of a world without nuclear weapons and to taking the prudent actions that are necessary to one day make that possible. Now, as most of you know, this summer the world marks 70 years since representatives from dozens of countries came together in San Francisco to sign the United Nations Charter. In doing so, they pledged to save humankind from the scourge of war and to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom." Full Text»

Remarks on Follow-up and Review of Financing for Development and Means of Implementation
U.S. Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (Apr.  24):
 "For today, we see no dividing line between the principles that define a strong review framework for Financing for Development, and a follow-up process for the broader Post-2015 sustainable development agenda. Certainly there will be different sources and kinds of data and different layers of reporting at the international, regional and national levels. But this complexity already applies across the agenda, and the fundamental principles of our approach must be consistent throughout. We believe strongly in one, integrated framework for reviewing the post-2015 development agenda and Financing for Development." Full Text»

Assistant Secretary Crocker Travel to Geneva and Copenhagen
Washington DC (Apr. 17):
Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Sheba Crocker will be in Geneva April 20 – 22 to co-chair the spring meeting of the Geneva Group. The Geneva Group consists of seventeen of the largest contributors to the United Nations (UN) budget. The group meets regularly to discuss and pursue measures to promote budget discipline and improve transparency, efficiency, and effectiveness across the UN system. Full Text»

Food for Peace Boot Camp Trains Officers To Combat Global Hunger
Date: 04/24/2015 Description: Elizabeth Petrovski poses with farmers that she interviewed as part of a needs assessment during food for peace bot camp in Zimbabwe. - State Dept ImageDipNote (Apr. 24): Boot camp usually conjures up images of new military recruits being subjected to fiery drill sergeants, endless marching, agonizing calisthenics, and weapons training -- remember Bill Murray’s character in the film Stripes? Preparing soldiers for combat is important for national security. Boot camp at the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Office of Food for Peace also trains officers in security -- but in this case it is food security: making sure people have enough nutritious food to survive. I recently had the opportunity to attend a Food for Peace Boot Camp in Zimbabwe where, as a complement to my policy background, I learned how decisions are made on whether to send U.S. assistance to countries suffering from acute hunger. Full Text»

Don’t Forget About Syria
DipNote (Apr. 15):
In Kuwait on March 31, the international community pledged more than $3.3 billion to alleviate suffering brought on by the crisis in Syria. The pledges, which included $508 million from the United States, will help millions of people affected by the crisis this year, but they did not meet the $8.4 billion dollars needed under UN appeals. This gap between needs and resources raises important issues about the most severe crisis of our time. Full Text»

GPOI Delivers Heavy Engineering Equipment to Nepal for Peacekeeping Missions
Date: 04/15/2015 Description: U.S. military personnel deliver heavy engineering equipment in Nepal. © Nepal Office of Defense CooperationDipNote (Apr. 15): In 2005 the United States established the Global Peace Operations Initiative (GPOI), a State Department funded program dedicated to building international capacity to conduct peacekeeping operations. The program works closely with the Department of Defense to develop peacekeeping capabilities in partner countries around the world. Since GPOI’s inception, program implementers have supported Nepal’s ambitious efforts to train and equip its peacekeeping forces. Full Text»

U.S. National Statement to the UN Crime Congress
Remarks (Apr. 13):
Thank you, Mr. President. The United States delegation is grateful to the Government of Qatar for its hospitality this week, and for its leadership in organizing and hosting a meaningful and productive Crime Congress. Mr. President, we are here this week to discuss the linkages between crime prevention, criminal justice, and sustainable development. It is clear that there can be no prosperity without security, and that there can be no security without effective, transparent, and responsive governance under the rule of law. Full Text»

The 2015 Education for All Global Monitoring Report: What Lessons and Challenges Will Shape the Post-2015 Global Education World?
Date: 04/09/2015 Description: Children study and practice writing at a school in India. © AP ImageDipNote (Apr. 9): 2015 is a monumental year for the world's global education goals. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) come to an end this year as do the Education for All (EFA) goals which were adopted during the World Education Conference in Dakar, Senegal in 2000. Today the 12th and final edition of the Global Monitoring Report (GMR), 'Education for All (EFA) 2000-2015: Achievements and Challenges' launches charting progress of the six EFA goals. Full Text»

World Health Day: Food Safety and Food Security
DipNote (Apr. 7):
World Health Day serves as an important occasion to recognize the achievements and challenges in the global health community. While health emergencies such as Ebola and polio have taken over the headlines, we must not forget the critical linkages that food and nutrition have with health and other development issues. This year’s World Health Day highlights the importance of food safety -- which directly impacts both food security and the global health agenda. Full Text»

Making Progress on Health Now and Post-2015
Date: 04/07/2015 Description: Woman farmer works in a potato field, © AP ImageDipNote (Apr. 7): While the world has made significant progress, the international community must continue to mobilize action to address malnutrition and pressing global health challenges. We aim at nothing less than a grand convergence in health, where the developing world enjoys health outcomes similar to those in the developed world. As the end date for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) rapidly approaches, the United States strongly supports a Post-2015 Development Agenda that addresses the unfinished business of the MDGs: to end preventable child and maternal deaths, realize the promise of an AIDS-free generation, and keep the world safe and secure from infectious disease and emerging threats. Full Text»

UN International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action
Secretary of State John Kerry (Apr. 4):
The observance of UN International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action on April 4 allows the United States to take pride in its efforts to address the humanitarian impact of these deadly devices on civilian populations around the world. Nonetheless, landmines and other unexploded ordnance continue to endanger civilians in over 60 countries across the globe. We must make that our focus during the coming year. Full Text»

Climate Change: The Defining Challenge of our Generation
Date: 03/31/2015 Description: Steam and smoke is seen over a coal burning power plant. © AP ImageDipNote (Mar. 31): Today the United States took an important step and formally submitted its commitment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. In a statement, Secretary of State John Kerry underscored the United States commitment to playing a leading role in the global effort to address climate change, calling it the “defining challenge of our generation.” Full Text»

Submission of the U.S. Intended Nationally Determined Contribution to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
Secretary of State John Kerry (Mar. 31)
: "I was in Beijing with President Obama last November when he outlined the United States’ ambitious post-2020 greenhouse gas emissions target alongside Chinese President Xi Jinping. At a joint press conference, our nations each outlined bold climate change and clean energy objectives. For our part, the United States committed to cut our emissions by 26 to 28 percent from 2005 levels by the year 2025 – which would put us on the path to economy-wide reductions of around 80 percent by mid-century." Full Text»

Remarks at the Third International Humanitarian Pledging Conference for Syria, Kuwait City, Kuwait
U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations Samantha Power (Mar. 31): "
Countries must close the widening gap between what we are providing and what the Syrian people desperately need. That is why President Obama sent me here today to announce that the United States is pledging $507 million, in addition to the nearly $3.2 billion we have provided since the conflict began. We are directing this aid to help meet Syrians’ immediate needs, such as treating more than 2 million patients in U.S.-supported hospitals and clinics, and feeding nearly 7 million people." Full Text»

Syria: The Greatest Humanitarian Crisis in a Generation Demands the Response of a Generation 
Date: 03/24/2015 Description: U.S. will provide nearly $508 million in additional life-saving assistance to benefit those affected by the war in Syria. - State Dept ImageDipNote (Mar. 31): U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations Samantha Power led the U.S. Delegation to the Third International Humanitarian Pledging Conference for Syria today. The pledging conference hosted and sponsored by the State of Kuwait, raised financial resources to respond to humanitarian needs in Syria and neighboring countries resulting from the ongoing conflict. Full Text»

Why You Should Still Care About Syria
Date: 03/30/2015 Description: Syrian girl who fled with her family from the violence in their village, washes cothes at a displaced camp, near the Turkish border with Syria. © AP ImageDipNote (Mar. 31): This month, the Syrian conflict entered its fifth year. The relentless fighting has taken a catastrophic toll, making Syria the worst humanitarian crisis of our time. More than 220,000 people have lost their lives and more than 12 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance in Syria–3 million more than a year ago. More than half of the entire Syrian population has fled their homes due to the violence, and an entire generation of Syrians–like Amina–are losing their childhood. Full Text»

On the Ground in South Sudan: Delivering Humanitarian and Food Assistance Against The Odds
Date: 07/25/2013 Location: South Sudan Description: Relief food arrives in South Sudan.  © USAID ImageDipNote (Mar. 28): Only three short years ago, the South Sudanese people saw their long struggle for independence culminate with the birth of the world’s newest nation. The current conflict robs them of the opportunity to enjoy peace, stability, and prosperity. WFP is one of the U.S. Government’s most stalwart partners in helping the people of South Sudan, as well as in providing humanitarian assistance for Syria, Iraq, Central African Republic, Ebola-affected countries and other crises around the world. Full Text»

Key U.S. Outcomes at the UN Human Rights Council 28th Session 

Fact Sheet (Mar. 27): The outcomes of the 28th Session of the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) underscored the importance of robust U.S. engagement at the Council, where the United States continues to work with countries from all regions to address urgent human rights concerns. Secretary of State John Kerry’s statement to the Council during the high-level segment reaffirmed that U.S. leadership has helped to keep the Council at the forefront of international efforts to promote and protect human rights. Full Text»

The Goals and Targets Session of the Post-2015 Intergovernmental Negotiation Process
U.S. Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda Tony Pipa (Mar. 26)
: "We want to begin our discussion of goals and targets by first reinforcing our appreciation for this group’s collective effort during the Open Working Group. That experience built a strong foundation of shared vocabulary, a formidable evidence base from which to draw, understanding of mutual interests and concerns, and of course a report that serves as a guide for our discussions here. We recognize as well that we build these goals and targets on a strong lineage from the Millennium Development Goals and the Rio+20 Conference, and that we must thus use their lessons wisely." Full Text»

With U.S. Support, El Salvador Grows as an International Peacekeeper
Date: 03/24/2015 Description: DipNote: With U.S. Support, El Salvador Grows as an International Peacekeeper -- Salvadoran UN Peacekeepers. © AP ImageDipNote (Mar. 24): El Salvador is a founding partner in the Global Peace Operations Initiative (GPOI) -- a U.S. Government-funded security assistance program working to meet the growing global demand for peacekeepers. This month, with support from the GPOI program, El Salvador took a major step with its first independent deployment of 90 Salvadoran peacekeepers in support of the United Nations-led stabilization effort in Mali. Full Text»

From Hyogo to Sendai: A New Action Plan for Resilience
Date: 03/23/2015 Description: Man walks in flooded ricef field following Typhoon Hagupit in the Philippines. © AP ImageDipNote (Mar. 23): Last week, I led the U.S. delegation to the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in Sendai, Japan. The result: the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030. Establishing ambitious targets, this framework includes goals of reducing mortality, minimizing economic and infrastructure losses, and getting countries to commit to disaster risk reduction strategies. Full Text»

U.S. Delegation to the 59th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women
Washington, DC (Mar. 17):
The Department of State is pleased to announce the U.S. Delegation attending the 59th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), held March 9–20, 2015, at UN Headquarters in New York. Full Text»

The Future of UN Peace Operations
Date: 03/10/2015 Description: Participants of U.S. Institute for Peace event on the ''Future of UN Peace Operations.
 © USIPDipNote (Mar. 13): Peacekeeping operations are central to our collective determination to promote peace and security around the world. It is the right time for the international community to come together to ensure that the UN’s blue helmets are as effective as possible, and continue to offer the way to a stable peace for those who have seen conflict. Full Text»

Assistant Secretary Crocker Remarks at the Council on Foreign Relations on Assessing the United Nations at Seventy
Date: 03/12/2015 Description: Assistant Secretary Crocker at the Council on Foreign Relations. - State Dept ImageAssistant Secretary Crocker (Mar. 12): "Seventy years ago, the need for an international body to provide a convening authority and a constraint for disputing nations was obvious. And though it is true that since that day in San Francisco there have been few constants on the international stage, it is also true that a body that was conceived primarily as a means to prevent war among the great powers of the world has met that fundamental objective." Full Text»

Our Next 'Beijing Moment': Achieving Gender Equality by 2030
DipNote (Mar. 11):
Twenty years ago, tens of thousands of people gathered in Beijing for the Fourth World Conference on Women, where 189 governments made significant commitments to advance gender equality and the empowerment of all women, everywhere. As we reflect back on the unprecedented progress to translate the Beijing Platform for Action into concrete actions, this year’s 20th anniversary and the 59th session of the Commission on the Status of Women offer an opportunity for us to look at how far we’ve come to advance gender equality, both here in the United States and around the world. Full Text»

Deputy Secretary Blinken Remarks at the U.S. Institute for Peace on the Future of UN Peace Operations
Date: 03/10/2015 Description: Deputy Secretary Blinken at the U.S. Institute for Peace. March 10, 2015. © USIP ImageDeputy Secretary Blinken (Mar. 10): "The international community took a meaningful step forward in bolstering peacekeeping capacity in September at the UN Summit. Nearly one-third of the more than 30 countries in attendance announced they were considering new contributions of infantry battalions or force enablers to UN missions. Some nations re-affirmed their long-standing commitments, including Bangladesh and the Netherlands, and others offered to participate for the first time, like Colombia." Full Text»

Assistant Secretary Crocker Remarks at the U.S. Institute for Peace on the Future of UN Peace Operations
Date: 03/10/2015 Description: Assistant Secretary Crocker at the U.S. Institute for Peace. © USIPAssistant Secretary Crocker (Mar. 10): "Last September, in New York, I participated in the Peacekeeping Summit co-hosted by Vice President Biden, Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, Rwanda, Japan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. And the enthusiasm in the room and the commitment of the Summit participants to contribute to UN peacekeeping missions and to help fill key gaps was palpable. Our hope is that today’s event will build off that enthusiasm and that it will be one additional step on the path to strengthening and reforming UN peace operations and UN peacekeeping." Full Text»

ISIL's Destruction of Historical Heritage and Archeological Treasures
Secretary Kerry (Mar. 6): "
I am deeply disturbed by reports that ISIL has extended its destruction of Iraq’s historical treasures to the ancient archeological site of Nimrud. These depraved acts are an assault on the heritage of the Iraqi and Syrian people by an organization with a bankrupt and toxic ideology." Full Text»

Advancing Universal Values at the UN Human Rights Council
DipNote (Mar. 2):
We support the HRC because we strongly believe in its mission and its possibilities. We know that at best the Council can be a valuable means for reminding every nation of its commitments and obligations to human rights and for holding countries accountable when they fail to meet international standards. Full Text»

Secretary Kerry Press Availability in Geneva, Switzerland
Secretary Kerry (Mar. 2): "
A little while ago, as I think you know, I had the opportunity to address the UN Human Rights Council here in Geneva. And since the United States made the decision to re-engage on the council, we have worked hard to try to drive a number of significant steps to be able to bring new levels of international attention to some of the world’s most egregious human rights violations, and also to focus on some of the worst abusers – particularly, obviously, we have focused on North Korea and Syria." Full Text»

28th Session of the Human Rights Council
Date: 03/02/2015 Description: Secretary of State John Kerry addresses delegates in the Human Rights Chamber at the United Nations Palais des Nations on March 2, 2015, in Geneva, Switzerland. - State Dept ImageSecretary Kerry (Mar. 2): "The moral standard that summons us all here and unites us in common action does not belong to any one nation or continent. The fundamental struggle for dignity has been a driving force in all human history worldwide, and what drives us are a set of universal values and aspirations." Full Text»

Assistant Secretary Crocker Travel to Geneva and Vienna
Date: 02/27/2015 Description: Assistant Secretary Crocker and Ambassador Harper at the Human Rights Council - State Dept ImageWashington, DC (Feb. 27): Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Sheba Crocker  accompanied Secretary of State John Kerry to Geneva, Switzerland for the high-level segment of the 28th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council. Full Text»


Nomination of Dr. Chris Field as Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
Washington, DC (Feb. 27):
The United States is pleased to announce the nomination of Dr. Chris Field to serve as chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the leading scientific body for the assessment of climate change. Dr. Field, a director at the Carnegie Institution for Science and professor at Stanford University, has served as co-chair of the IPCC’s Working Group II since 2008, and has delivered two major assessments during this term. Full Text»

Secretary Kerry Travel to Geneva, Montreux, Riyadh, and London
Washington, DC (Feb. 26):
Secretary of State John Kerry traveled to Geneva, Switzerland, on March 2, to address the high-level segment of the 28th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council. While in Geneva, the Secretary also meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to discuss Ukraine and regional issues of common interest. Full Text»

United States Hosts First Ever U.S.-India Dialogue on UN and Multilateral Issues
Washington, DC (Feb. 18):
Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Sheba Crocker hosted the Indian Ministry of External Affairs Joint Secretary Vikas Swarup at the Department of State for the U.S.-India Dialogue on UN and Multilateral Issues on February 18. This dialogue was an opportunity for the two nations to discuss a wide range of important issues. Full Text»

United States Provides $125 Million to the World Food Program for the Syria Crisis
Washington, DC (Feb. 17):
Increasing its commitment to help those affected by the crisis in Syria, the United States is providing an additional $125 million in humanitarian assistance to the UN World Food Program (WFP), which feeds nearly six million Syrians and refugees from Syria every month. Full Text»

UN Security Council Resolution 2199 on ISIL
New York, NY (Feb. 12):
Adopted under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, this resolution provides for a range of tools, including sanctions and other binding measures, to degrade these terrorist organizations' ability to carry out brutal attacks. It focuses extensively on terrorist financial support networks, particularly ISIL's raising of funds through oil smuggling, looting of antiquities, kidnapping for ransom and other illicit activities. Fact Sheet»

Submission of U.S. Universal Periodic Review Report
Washington, DC (Feb. 6):
On February 2, the United States submitted its report as part of the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. The U.S. Government will present its report in a dialogue with the UPR Working Group of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on May 11. Full Text»

International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting
Secretary Kerry (Feb. 6):
I’ve been Secretary of State for two years now and in all my travels, one of the most horrific and searing things I’ve witnessed is seeing firsthand the destruction to young women’s lives wrought by female genital mutilation and cutting. It has to end. We have to speak out. We cannot be afraid to talk about this and, uncomfortable as it may be, call it by its name: violence, plain and simple. Full Text»

Nomination of 10 Frank Lloyd Wright Buildings to UNESCO World Heritage List
Washington, DC (Jan. 30):
The United States is pleased to announce the nomination of a group of 10 buildings in seven states designed by American architect Frank Lloyd Wright for inclusion on the World Heritage List. The UNESCO World Heritage List recognizes the “outstanding universal value” of the most significant cultural and natural sites on the planet. Full Text» 

Announcement of Special Coordinator for the Post-2015 Development Agenda
Washington, DC (Jan. 28):
Mr. Pipa will lead U.S. engagement and negotiations during the intergovernmental process at the United Nations, where the global community will work to define—and agree upon—an ambitious agenda on sustainable development for decades to come. The negotiations will culminate in a presidential summit at the United Nations this coming September. Full Text»

The Future of Agriculture in Mozambique: Entrepreneurs
Date: 01/28/2015 Description: DipNote: Lucas Mujuju with S Soja (Only Soy) his soy-based drinkable yogurt  - State Dept ImageDipNote (Jan. 28): Farmers in Mozambique, like those in other developing countries I have visited, consistently said they want one thing most of all – to move beyond subsistence farming to a modern agricultural economy. They seek business skills to improve and diversify their production, so that they can increase their incomes and provide more opportunities for their families. At almost every stop, I heard about the acute need for the physical and financial infrastructure and commercial environment that will make this possible. Mozambican farmer and entrepreneur Lucas Mujuju is an example of how this can work. Full Text»

Ambassador Power’s Remarks at a General Assembly Meeting on Anti-Semitism
Ambassador Power (Jan. 22):
Today we are taking a historic step by holding the first-ever meeting in the General Assembly on tackling this long-standing and growing problem. The United States is proud to have joined 36 other nations in calling for this meeting last October. But unprecedented as this step may be, and in addition to the commitments that we hope countries will announce today, we urge everyone in this room to return to their capitals with the urgency and energy this monstrous global problem demands, to turn words into long overdue actions. Governments cannot do this alone; we have to rally civil society partners around this effort, including diverse religions and ethnicities, human rights groups and civil rights groups. Full Text»

2015 is the UN International Year of Light
DipNote (Jan. 22):
By proclaiming 2015 the International Year of Light, the UN endeavors to raise awareness of the centrality of light and light-based technologies to our lives, our future, and to the overall benefit of society. Activities on national, regional, and international levels have been planned for IYL 2015, and people of all ages and backgrounds are encouraged to participate. A consortium of hundreds of worldwide partners including scientific societies, educational and research institutions, non-profit organizations, and the private sector have actively coordinated to promote and celebrate the significance of light, and light based technologies, to human health, art, scientific inquiry, and development. Full Text»

Deputy Secretary of State Heather Higginbottom Hosts Youth Roundtable on the Future of Development with USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah as Part of action/2015 Global Campaign
Date: 01/14/2015 Description: Deputy Secretary Higginbottom and USAID Administrator Shah With Action/2015 Participants - State Dept ImageWashington, DC (Jan. 14): The 15-year-old students will meet with Deputy Secretary Higginbottom and USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah to discuss their hopes for tackling some of the world’s biggest development challenges, their vision of what the world will look like in 2030, and their ideas for a successful Post-2015 Development Agenda, the successor framework to the Millennium Development Goals. Discussion topics will center on tackling global development challenges in energy access, global health, hunger and food security, and opportunities for women and girls. These teens were born in 2000, the year that the UN launched the Millennium Development Goals, and they will be the generation for which the Sustainable Development Goals developed later this year will have the largest impact. Full Text»

Ambassador Power’s Remarks at the University of Louisville McConnell Center
Ambassador Power (Jan. 12):
While this isolationist view exists, President Obama, Leader McConnell, and millions of Americans recognize that we must work together to ensure continued U.S. leadership in the world. We understand that we cannot retrench. We cannot back down from these great challenges around the world today, in which our security and our principles are on the line. And we know we need to make this case to the American people. You see evidence of our shared commitment to engage with the world in the way America has responded to three foreign policy challenges of our time: bending the curve of a deadly Ebola outbreak; confronting violent extremism; and advancing freedom and democracy in a decades-long military dictatorship, Burma. In all three of these instances, our ability to marshal America’s unparalleled strength behind a single goal has changed and saved lives, and advanced both our national security interests and our values. Full Text»

U.S. Government Contributes $1 Million to IAEA in Ebola Fight
Washington, DC (Jan. 8):
The U.S. Government has contributed $1 million to the International Atomic Energy Agency for a new project that will improve and streamline efforts to diagnose the Ebola virus in Africa. Of the total U.S. contribution, $650,000 is provided through the IAEA’s Peaceful Uses Initiative and $350,000 through other extra-budgetary contributions to the IAEA. The IAEA’s project will provide high-quality training and cutting-edge equipment based on nuclear science applications to teams of virologists in 11 African countries—Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, and Uganda—to help them more quickly and safely diagnose emerging diseases, including Ebola. Full Text» 

Feed the Future: Progress in the Goal of Ending Hunger
DipNote (Jan. 8):
For generations, the United States has been a leader in providing development assistance across the globe to alleviate suffering. But global food price spikes and resulting instability in 2007 and 2008 were a wake-up call: More needed to be done to break the vicious cycle of hunger and poverty. The answer: Unlock the potential of agriculture as the key to reducing hunger, extreme poverty and malnutrition through an initiative that became Feed the Future. In just a few short years, Feed the Future is already changing the face of hunger and poverty for some of the world's poorest families. Full Text» 

U.S. Welcomes Robust UN Electoral Observation Mission to Burundi
Washington, DC (Jan. 7):
The United States welcomes the start of the UN Electoral Observation Mission to Burundi (MENUB) on January 1. We look forward to continuing our relationship with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights as it once again becomes a stand-alone entity within the UN system. Although much has been accomplished in Burundi since the end of its civil war, much remains to be done. With national elections in Burundi beginning in May, MENUB has an important role to play in supporting a peaceful and inclusive electoral process that enables the people of Burundi to continue to build a more stable and prosperous society. Full Text» 


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