• Humanitarian Aid

    With a New UN Resolution Approved, More Aid Could Get Inside Syria

    by  • July 14, 2014 • Humanitarian Aid, Peace and Security, Security Council • 
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    Valerie Amos, UN humanitarian aid chief

    Attempting a second time this year to ease the humanitarian catastrophe in Syria as a result of its three-year civil war and no political solution in sight, the United Nations Security Council has displayed a rare unified front on the matter by passing a resolution to better ensure that aid can get through conflict...

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    The UN Has Lost the Aid-Effectiveness Race: What Is to Be Done?

    by  • March 5, 2014 • Development, Humanitarian Aid • 
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    A UN-supported market in Lebanon.

    Recent events have confirmed that the United Nations has a deep reservoir of good will worldwide. But its reputation is undermined by the ineffectiveness of its development assistance. UN agencies could improve their performance by implementing effective evaluations. However, the UN cannot be judged solely on the basis of its development assistance because the...

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    UN Security Council Votes a Surprising ‘Yes’ on Syria

    by  • February 22, 2014 • Humanitarian Aid, Middle East, Security Council • 
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    Valerie Amos

    The United Nations Security Council approved a breakthrough resolution to demand humanitarian-aid access in Syria, after debating the language of the text for at least a week, as Russia lobbied hard for changes to soften wording or delete passages as well as tried to postpone the vote while the Olympics are taking place in...

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    Gates and the British Government Seize the Lead for Family Planning

    by  • July 22, 2013 • Africa, Health and Population, Humanitarian Aid, Women's Issues • 1 Comment
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    Birthing in Nepal

    With the world population now growing faster than predicted only two years ago by the United Nations Population Division, a campaign to make family planning and the wider provision of contraceptives higher priorities in foreign aid policy after years of neglect has taken off. But it is largely being done outside the UN system,...

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    A Tale of Sierra Leone and Striving for Transparency

    by  • June 26, 2013 • Africa, Development, Governance, Humanitarian Aid, Peace and Security, Security Council • 
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    Sierra Leone is abundant in such natural resources as diamonds, gold and iron ore, but it is making a long comeback from its civil war, in which civilians' limbs were cut off, among other atrocities. Here, Sierra Leonean soccer players.

    Britain, the world’s major center for investment in the extractive industries, is reviving the international debate on how open management of mining can prevent conflicts. The issue was raised in a Security Council meeting on June 19, after a seven-year hiatus on the subject in that setting. It was also discussed at the Group...

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    The Real Test of Mali? Holding a Presidential Election in July

    by  • June 18, 2013 • Africa, Governance, Humanitarian Aid, Peace and Security, WORLDVIEWS • 
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    Malians-bathing-in-Gao

    BAMAKO, Mali — Here in the capital, far from the fight against the Al Qaeda-linked Islamist militants in the north of the country, people are still overwhelmingly supportive of the French military intervention, which began early this year to oust the jihadists. They are also still comfortable with the presence of French and African-led...

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    Far-Reaching Changes Remake the UN Food and Agriculture Organization

    by  • May 13, 2013 • Humanitarian Aid, UN Agencies, World Bank • 
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    An olive oil plant in Tunisia

      BERLIN — The fight against hunger became a primary goal of the United Nations system early on. In 1943, United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt convened an international conference that reached agreement on the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization, and two years later, on Oct. 16, 1945, only days before the...

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    The Business and Politics of Good Samaritans

    by  • March 30, 2013 • Humanitarian Aid, WORLDVIEWS • 
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    Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan

    “Humanitarian” and “business” are juxtaposed in the title of my new book, “Humanitarian Business,” for two reasons: provocation and accuracy. It jars those who idealize the humanitarian enterprise because the adjective has uncontested positive connotations while the noun is associated with wheeling and dealing and thus at odds with the self-image of true believers....

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    Fewer People May Be Going Hungry, but Extreme Hunger Persists

    by  • January 21, 2013 • Africa, Asia, Climate and Environment, Development, Humanitarian Aid, Women's Issues • 3 Comments
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    Turkana farmers in Kenya

    With the start of a new year, the eradication of hunger remains one of the world’s biggest challenges. Despite decades of aid work and development, overall world hunger remains at a serious level, and 20 countries have alarming or extremely alarming levels, says the Global Hunger Index for 2012. At the top of the...

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    Deep Flaws in UN Response to Sri Lanka Include R2P Failure

    by  • December 20, 2012 • Asia, Human Rights, Humanitarian Aid, Responsibility to Protect, Secretary-General • 2 Comments
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    Tamil Tiger cadres loading up in Sri Lanka

    The United Nation’s internal report on its role during the final stages of the prolonged civil war in Sri Lanka was unusually critical of the Secretariat and highlighted major shortcomings in the UN’s response to the fighting. The report, which was leaked to the BBC days before its official release on Nov. 15, forced...

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