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Date: 04/12/2011 Description: Cote d'Ivoire © UN Image

Date: 06/20/2013 Description: Secretary Kerry attends the World Refugee Day event in the Ben Franklin Room of the State Department. - State Dept Image

Date: 04/12/2011 Description: Syrian protests © AP Image Date: 04/07/2011 Location: UNESCO Paris Description: DipNote Blog: UNESCO Youth Forum Application Process Open. © AP Image

The Bureau of International Organization Affairs (IO) is the U.S. Government’s primary interlocutor with the United Nations and a host of international agencies and organizations. As such, the Bureau is charged with advancing the President’s vision of robust multilateral engagement as a crucial tool in advancing U.S. national interests. U.S. multilateral engagement spans the full range of important global issues, including peace and security, nuclear nonproliferation, human rights, economic development, climate change, global health, and much more.


South Sudan's Leaders Need To Set Aside Their Dispute
Secretary of State John Kerry & National Security Advisor Susan Rice ( December 15):
Violence that erupted in the capital city of Juba last December spread quickly, claiming the lives of thousands of men, women, and children and reopening bitter ethnic divisions. In the time since, almost 2 million people have been displaced from their homes, while residents in some parts of the country face the risk of famine. In a country that has so much potential and that has endured decades of conflict, the suffering and violence have had a devastating effect. The tragedy is especially hard to accept because the violence was not imposed on South Sudan by outside forces; instead it was unleashed by a political dispute among the country’s leaders. Now, the responsibility is on their shoulders to halt the bloodshed and bring their country together. Full Text»


Remarks by the First Lady at Girls' Education Conference
First Lady Michelle Obama (December 12):
 "As you know, when 62 million girls are still not in school, when in some countries, fewer than 10 percent of girls complete secondary school, then we know that our work is far from finished. In fact, in many ways, it’s only just beginning. Because the truth is –- and you all know this more than anyone -– we’re now coming to a new, more -- and important and challenging phase of this work. We are beginning to confront those “second generation” issues, especially as they apply to adolescent girls. We may have more girls in those classrooms, but now we’re stepping back and asking ourselves, are they truly learning what they need to know? Are we really doing everything we can to keep them safe? How can we ensure that they don’t just start school, but they actually stay in school through adolescence, and then transition to the workforce?" Full Text»


Climate Change: A Test of Global Leadership
Secretary of State John Kerry (December 11):
"Now I know it’s human nature at times to believe that mankind can somehow defy Mother Nature. But I think it is the plight of humanity that, in fact, we cannot. And whether we’re able to promptly and effectively address climate change is as big a test of global leadership, of the international order – such as we call it – it’s the biggest test of that that you’ll find. Every nation – and I repeat this as we hear the debates going back and forth here – every nation has a responsibility to do its part if we’re going to pass this test. And only those nations who step up and respond to this threat can legitimately lay claim to any mantle of leadership and global responsibility." Full Text»


Human Rights Day 2014
Secretary of State John Kerry (December 10):
 "Delegates from around the world came together 66 years ago amid the rubble of World War II to sign the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, articulating fundamental civil and political rights of all people, and reminding each of us of our responsibility to respect those rights….We live at a time when democratic principles and respect for human rights have greater reach than at any previous time in history. This is due not simply to what governments have done, but to what people around the world have done to elevate, monitor, and enforce human rights standards. However, past progress is no guarantee of future gains. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is the very opposite of a self-fulfilling document. It’s a promise to keep. Let’s all make sure we keep it." Full Text»


70th Anniversary of the Signing of the Convention on International Civil Aviation
Date: 12/07/1944 Description: Agreements signed at the end of the Chicago Conference in the Grand Ballroom of the Stevens Hotel, Chicago. From left to right: Kia-Ngau, China; Lord Swinton, United Kingdom; Adolf A. Berle Jr., Assistant Secretary of State, U.S.; H.J. Symington, Canada, and Max Hymans, France. 7 December 1944. - UN ImageSecretary Kerry (Dec. 8): "As a founding member of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the United States congratulates the organization on 70 years as an influential and effective international body. Seventy years ago in Chicago, 52 nations including the United States established an agreement that would guide the development of civil aviation. That agreement, signed on December 7, 1944, created the framework within which the aviation industry has grown and established ICAO as the forum through which the international community has promoted aviation safety and security. Today ICAO boasts 191 member states, and remains a vital tool in guiding the evolution of the aviation sector on a range of challenging safety, security, and sustainability issues, such as flight tracking, information sharing, and environmental impact. We pledge our continued active engagement and support." Full Text»


U.S. Statement to the Extraordinary Session of the ICAO Council
Assistant Secretary Crocker (Dec. 8):
The challenges we now face could not have been imagined in 1944, but the framework of the Chicago Convention and the Organization it established have endured and prevailed.  ICAO’s solid institutional foundation and our collective efforts make the United States confident that that, despite these challenges, ICAO will continue to ensure the safety, security and sustainability of the international civil aviation system.  The United States is proud of our history and partnership with ICAO.  We are also proud to be a part of this important celebration today.  Full Text»


Joint Statement Issued by Partners at the Counter-ISIL Coalition Ministerial Meeting
Washington, DC (Dec. 3):
Sixty partners met at the invitation of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry for substantive deliberations at the first ministerial-level plenary session for the Global Coalition to Counter the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Brussels, Belgium. (ISIL is hereafter also referred to by its Arabic acronym, Daesh). Prime Minister of Iraq Haider al-Abadi, President Barack Obama’s Special Envoy to the Coalition General John Allen, and distinguished representatives from Coalition partners also addressed this important plenary meeting, offering updates on Coalition progress and benchmarks for the coming months. Full Text» 


On #GivingTuesday, Be Part of the #EbolaResponse
Date: 12/02/2014 Description: DipNote: Volunteers Prepare Medical Supplies for Shipment to Countries Affected by Ebola - State Dept ImageDipNote (Dec. 2): The ongoing Ebola outbreak in West Africa is the largest ever recorded. The countries affected in West Africa have reported more than 15,900 suspected and confirmed cases. While we are starting to see early signs of progress, we will need to continue to expand the pace, ingenuity, and scale of our response to stop Ebola for good. The United States is working with the World Health Organization and other international partners to help West African governments respond to and stop the outbreak of the Ebola virus as quickly as possible. You, as an individual, can be part of the response, too. Full Text»


On #GivingTuesday, Help #EndHunger
Date: 12/02/2014 Description: DipNote: Children Receive a Meal - State Dept ImageDipNote (Dec. 2): More than 800 million people go to bed hungry every night, but the world doesn’t have to be this way. Ending extreme poverty and hunger is achievable, but we can’t do it alone. We need academia, civil society, the private sector, and you to help make it happen. Through the U.S. government’s Feed the Future initiative, we are building connections and enabling collaboration among a broad range of partners to strengthen the global network of actors collectively fighting hunger worldwide. On this “Giving Tuesday,” we encourage you to learn about global hunger, and consider how you might be a part of that network. Begin by going to www.FeedtheFuture.gov, and then consider one of these ways you can get started. Full Text»


Ambassador Power Remarks at Yale University
Ambassador Power (Dec. 1):"
 My message to you today is that we cannot treat the short and long term as an either-or proposition. We have to try to put out a lot of fires in the here and now. But we can’t let the immediacy of today’s crises distract us from playing a smart long game that will create more stability and more security in the long run. Let me offer a few examples: curbing the spread of Ebola, protecting rights of women and girls, and countering violent extremism." Full Text»


Engage With Climate Experts at the #COP20 U.S. Center
Date: 11/30/2014 Description: Calendar of Events Hosted by the U.S. Center at COP-20. - State Dept ImageDipNote (Nov. 30): Climate change negotiators from all over the world will gather for the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties (COP-20) in Lima, Peru, from December 1-12. These negotiators will work tirelessly on building an agreement to combat climate change. These two weeks of UN climate talks are also a prime opportunity to spotlight the urgency and seriousness of this far-reaching issue. Running parallel to the negotiations will be the operations at the U.S. Center, a public outreach initiative organized during COP-20 to inform audiences about the actions being taken by the United States to help stop climate change. Full Text»


International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and 16 Days of Activism
Secretary Kerry (Nov. 25):
 "Simply put, we must all do more to end violence against women in all its forms, wherever and whenever it occurs, and it starts by acknowledging it. There can be no conspiracy of silence. The sad truth is that one in three women will experience gender-based violence in her lifetime. This violence knows no class, religious, or racial boundaries. And it comes at a terrible cost – not only for the woman or girl, but for families, communities, and entire countries. Preventing it is the only way to achieve a future of peace, stability, and prosperity….We will not turn away in the face of evil and brutality. We stand up, and we reaffirm that all forms of gender-based violence will be not be tolerated. Not now, not ever." Full Text»


Iran’s Nuclear Program
Secretary Kerry (Nov. 22): "We’ve been, obviously, having difficult talks here – complicated topic. We’re working hard. We hope we’re making careful progress, but we have big gaps. We still have some serious gaps which we’re working to close." Full Text»


The Monrovia Medical Unit is Aiding Healthcare Workers in the Fight Against Ebola
Date: 2014 Description: Monrovia Medical Unit Built To Care for Health Workers Infected With Ebola. - State Dept ImageAmbassador Malac (Nov. 22): Constructed by the Department of Defense and staffed by the men and women of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, the Monrovia Medical Unit is a true representation of the continuing momentum in the fight against the Ebola virus. The U.S. government has already deployed more than 2500 personnel to West Africa, making this the largest-ever U.S. government response to a global health crisis. While the MMU represents only one milestone in the ongoing fight against the Ebola virus, it is a vital piece of the puzzle. The addition of the MMU’s 25-bed field hospital is but one component of a broader effort to protect both international and Liberian healthcare workers who have courageously volunteered to treat Ebola patients in Monrovia and across the country. The MMU is currently treating three Liberian health care workers. These are the true heroes in our battle with the Ebola virus, those who are winning the fight day-by-day and patient-by-patient. Full Text»


Key Outcomes from the Annual Conference to Advance the Human Rights of and Promote Inclusive Development for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Persons
Washington, DC (Nov.  21): The United States was proud to host the third Annual Conference to Advance the Human Rights of and Promote Inclusive Development for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Persons (LGBTI) held in Washington from November 12–14. The conference was the largest such gathering to date, bringing together senior leaders from government, civil society and the private sector to discuss and strategize on how to most effectively protect the human rights of LGBTI persons and promote their inclusion in development programs. Thirty governments were represented from all regions as well as representatives from nine multilateral agencies, including the United Nations and World Bank. Key outcomes of the conference»


United Nations Security Council Meeting on Ebola, November 21, 2014
Ambassador Power (Nov. 22): "We need to invest more in preparing neighboring countries to prevent new outbreaks, and to contain those outbreaks swiftly when they occur. That is why the United States is working with international organizations, including the WHO, and officials from more than 40 nations through the Global Health Security Agenda, which is increasing the preparedness of national health systems to respond to infectious disease threats and making global health security an international priority. As the recent events in Mali make clear, if even a single link in the chain of responsibility is broken, the welfare of an entire country – or region – can be put at risk. Ebola punishes us for every mistake." Full Text»


Government of Sudan Delays Access to Investigate Reports of Mass Rape in North Darfur
Washington, DC (November  12): The United States is deeply concerned by allegations of mass rape by Sudanese military forces in Tabit, North Darfur. While we take note that the Government of Sudan recently allowed access to the United Nations/African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) to investigate these allegations, we regret the fact that initial access was denied, and after significant delays, access to potential witnesses and victims was only allowed under close observation of Sudanese security officials. Such behavior calls into question Sudan’s compliance with the Security Council’s call to “remove all obstacles to UNAMID’s full and proper discharge of its mandate including securing freedom of movement in conflict affected areas.” Full Text»


Hailing the Contributions of the Private and Non-Profit Sectors to the Ebola Fight
Washington, DC (November 6):
The United States has allocated considerable resources to the Ebola response — more than any other country — but the President has made clear that we cannot take on this challenge alone. That’s why you’ve seen this Administration reach out to leaders across the globe to build an international coalition that has grown by the day. But beyond the important role that countries large and small play, we’ve been heartened to see the outpouring of support from the private and non-profit sectors. Full Text»


U.S. Department of State Engages African Diaspora Communities on the U.S. Response to the Ebola Crisis
Date: 11/03/2014 Description: Ebola Military Medical Support Team Participates in a Training Exercise on October 24, 2014. - State Dept ImageWashington, DC (November 3): In October, the State Department’s Bureau of Public Affairs, along with our interagency colleagues, hosted a conference call with over 200 members of the African diaspora community to discuss the U.S. government’s response to the Ebola crisis. Individuals representing Sierra Leone, Liberian, Nigerian, Senegalese and other diaspora communities participated from several states across the country, including Maryland, Minnesota, Connecticut, and Arizona. U.S. government officials provided call participants with an update on the U.S. government’s response and listened to their ideas and suggestions about how the government can coordinate with African diaspora communities across the United States. Full Text»


State Department Hosts Inaugural Plenary Meeting of the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL
Washington, DC (November 3):
Acting Deputy Secretary of State Wendy R. Sherman welcomed to the State Department more than 35 Washington-based ambassadors from partner countries in the global coalition to counter ISIL. This plenary session was an opportunity for coalition partners to reaffirm our shared efforts in the coalition, discuss ways in which we can integrate our contributions to coalition efforts, and review ways to accelerate or increase our joint operations. Full Text»


U.S. Condemns Violence in South Sudan's Unity State
Washington, DC (October 30):
The United States condemns in the strongest terms the latest attacks by Sudan People’s Liberation Movement /Army - In Opposition (SPLM/A - IO) in and around Bentiu, South Sudan. Since last December, thousands of people have been killed and millions have fled their homes due to the senseless man-made conflict in South Sudan. Despite the parties’ recent acceptance of collective responsibility for the crisis, these current attacks demonstrate that the SPLM/A-IO has yet to abandon violence to achieve its goals. We call on both sides – both of whom have committed violations of the agreement that have delayed peace – to ensure their forces refrain from further actions that violate the January 23 Cessation of Hostilities Agreement and undermine the peace process in South Sudan. Full Text»


 

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