foreign policy

Nuclear Weapons and International Law in the Contemporary Era

You are invited to: A Virtual Conference on Nuclear Weapons and International Law in the Contemporary Era

12 November 2020, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST

Seeking to address the huge gap in public awareness of nuclear weapons risk and applicable international law, the New York State Bar Association International Section is holding an all-day virtual conference that will bring together leading public officials, thought-leaders, policymakers, and experts for a comprehensive look at this often ignored subject.

According to Professor Charles J. Moxley, Jr., an LCNP director and a conference organizer, “International law may well hold the world’s best prospect for addressing and getting ahead of the existential risks posted by nuclear weapons.”

Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy (LCNP) is one of the co-sponsors of the conference and is well-represented in the program.

Register (no charge) and see the agenda here.

Among the speakers:

  • Professor Moxley, Kathleen Lawand of the International Committee of the Red Cross, and Professor David Koplow of Georgetown Law
  • Izumi Nakamitsu, UN Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, will deliver a keynote address, followed by a panel on the role of the United Nations featuring her, LCNP Senior Analyst John Burroughs, Allison Pytlak of Reaching Critical Will/WILPF, and LCNP Executive Director Ariana Smith (moderator)
  • Jerry Brown, former Governor of California and Executive Chairman, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, will engage in a dialogue on responding to the greatest threats to humanity with Jonathan Granoff, President of Global Security Institute and an LCNP director
  • A panel on advancing the rule of law and morality in relation to nuclear weapons includes Jacqueline Cabasso, Executive Director of Western States Legal Foundation, LCNP advisor Laurie Ashton, an attorney who served on the legal team for the Marshall Islands in its nuclear disarmament cases in the International Court of Justice, and Tom Collina, Director of Policy, Ploughshares Fund, and co-author with William Perry of The Button

Additional panels will address nuclear weapons risks, consequences and responses, and the treaty regime on nuclear weapons.

Conference co-sponsors in addition to LCNP are Fordham Law School, Center on National Security; Georgetown University, Berkley Center for Religion, Ethics and World Affairs; American Bar Association, International Law Section; New York City Bar Association, Committees on International Law, Military and Veteran Affairs, Nuclear Policy and the United Nations, and Cyrus R. Vance Center for International Justice; New York County Lawyers Association, Committee on Foreign & International Law; Global Security Institute.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.

Holocaust Education in Crisis? Challenges and Responses

To mark the anniversary of the November 1938 Pogrom, The Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme and UNESCO are hosting an online discussion Holocaust education in crisis? Challenges and responses to examine the implications of recent surveys about Holocaust education and possible responses to the challenges and opportunities they raise.
Discussions about Holocaust education usually focus on three main questions: what should be taught, how should it be taught, and to what end? Recent surveys have shown that historical knowledge of the Holocaust is in decline, while related dis- and misinformation is on the rise. Simultaneously, research suggests a connection between students’ positive attitudes towards human rights and activism and their exposure to Holocaust education. Our diverse expert panel considers the implications of this research for their field.
Speakers:

Gretchen Skidmore, Director of Education Initiatives, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, United States

Debórah Dwork, Founding Director, The Center for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity, Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies, The Graduate Center – CUNY, United States

Stuart Foster, Executive Director of the Center for Holocaust Education, University College London, United Kingdom

Elke Gryglewski, Head of the Educational Department, Memorial and Educational Site House of the Wannsee Conference, Germany

Yael Siman, Associate Professor at the Department of Social and Political Science, Iberoamericana University, Mexico

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the Committee of Religious NGOs at the United Nations, please visit rngos.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Freedom of Religion or Belief, please visit unforb.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Spirituality, Values, and Global Concerns-NY, please visit csvgc-ny.org. For more information on the Decolonization Alliance, please email President Bautista at lbautista@umcjustice.org. 

[Cyber Conference] There’s Still Hope and Here’s Why

On Nov. 5, join PEAC Institute and the United Methodist Church-General Board of Church and Society for a cyber conference designed to foster post-election reflections, healing, and mobilization.

Register here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_OArdeLrcSaO4A4JHpXdDQA

Background: From Tulsa to Hiroshima, from Auschwitz to the Trail of Tears, the scenes of death and destruction are the same. The root causes of these atrocities are the same too: cultures of violence fueling systems of oppression.

What can the people do to reclaim their rightful democratic power when corrupt governments fail to honor the contracts that ensure we live in a civil society with a sustainable future?

This action-driven conversation, co-sponsored by PEAC Institute and the General Board of Church and Society, will explore the challenge of dismantling cultures of violence. Through both historical and contemporary lenses, we will highlight some of the terrifying consequences we’re facing due to not fixing our culture of violence while also offering examples of nature-based solutions that people are successfully executing today. Speakers from multiple continents will include foreign policy experts, peace activists, and volunteer humanitarians reporting from the field.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the Decolonization Alliance, please email President Bautista at lbautista@umcjustice.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com.

Target 2045: A New Rallying Call for Nuclear Weapons Elimination

Target 2045: A new rallying call for nuclear weapons elimination

Co-sponsors: In-Depth News, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament, UNFOLD ZERO and #wethepeoples2020

A number of calls have been made recently, by non-nuclear governments and civil society organisations, to the nuclear armed and allied countries to commit to achieving the global elimination of nuclear weapons at least by 2045, the 100th anniversary of the United Nations (if not sooner). These include recent statements to the UN High Level Meeting on the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, and global appeals launched by #wethepeoples2020 and World Beyond War.

This target of 2045 appears far into the future for those of us who believe that nuclear disarmament can and should be achieved much earlier. However, setting a goal of 2045 could provide a global rallying call to build a stronger movement, and would avoid being dismissed as unrealistically early by those who rely on nuclear deterrence. (See 2045: A New Rallying Call for Nuclear Abolition, In-Depth News, Oct 22, 2020)

This webinar will explore the political value of setting 2045 as the target date by which the global elimination of nuclear weapons should be achieved, if not before.

Register here!

Speakers:

H.E. Mr Magzhan Ilyassov, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the United Nations

Mr. Saber Chowdhury, MP, Honorary President, Inter-Parliamentary Union, Co-President, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament

Mr. Ramesh Jaura, Editor-in-Chief & Director-General, IDN-InDepth News, flagship agency of the non-profit International Press Syndicate group

Ms. Vanda Proskova, Vice-Chair, PragueVision Institute for Sustainable Security, Co-chair, Abolition 2000 Youth Network

Chair: Mr. Alyn Ware, Member, World Future Council, Global Coordinator, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. 

[postponed] 21st session, Intergovernmental Working Group on the Right to Development

Announcement to civil society partners & interested participants:

The twenty-first session of the Intergovernmental Working Group on the Right to Development, planned to take place from 2 to 6 November 2020, is postponed to 3-7 May 2021, Ariana 1, Palais des Nations, Geneva, due to the current circumstances arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Organized by the NGO Liaison Unit, Political Affairs and Partnerships Section
Office of the Director-General, United Nations Office at Geneva, Palais des Nations, unog.ngo@un.org

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.

#75Words4Disarmament Congratulatory Event

#75Words4Disarmament Congratulatory Event by the #Youth4Disarmament Initiative
On Friday 23 October, watch the event live here: Join the Webex Event

If prompted, enter the following info:
Event number: 173 015 6470
Event password: WDYC2020

Background: In commemoration of the seventy-fifth anniversary of the establishment of the United Nations, the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs held the “#75Words4Disarmament Youth Challenge”, which was launched on 12 August, the International Youth Day, and was closed on 26 September, the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.

The “#75Words4Disarmament Youth Challenge” invited young people around the world to express what disarmament means to them and their communities in 75 words. The challenge provided an opportunity to think about disarmament not as an abstract concept, but as a practical means to help prevent armed conflict and promote peace and security.

The challenge was open to young people between the ages of 13 and 29, with three age groups: 13 to 18 years (middle and high school), 19 to 24 years (college and graduate school) and 25 to 29 years (early career professionals). The five winners from each group were selected by the panel of judges and will be announced at the congratulatory event at 9 a.m. (EDT) on Monday, 26 October, marking the Disarmament Week.

At the event, the winners will be announced by the High Representative for Disarmament Affairs and the young people’s concerns and cares for disarmament and ways for further youth engagement will be shared.

Our distinguished speakers:

Ms. Izumi Nakamitsu, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs
H.E. Mr. CHO Hyun, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea to the UN
Ms. Isa Begemann, UN Youth Champion for Disarmament
First Prize Winners

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Children’s Rights, please email the co-chair at marjones@nyc.rr.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com.

[last day to RSVP] Technological and Science-based Solutions to the COVID-19 Challenge

“Technological and Science-based Solutions to the COVID-19 Challenge”

Part of the UN DESA Global Policy Dialogue Series 

Thursday, 29 October 2020
10-11:30 a.m. EDT

Please join UN DESA on 29 October for a conversation with global leaders in science and technology that will assess the science-based policies and innovations that have developed during the pandemic, identifying good practices as well as areas where work is still needed. The event will feature a broad panel discussion with experts, followed by regional breakout sessions led by UN DESA (English) and the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (Arabic). The event will discuss these questions, among others:

  • What are concrete examples of innovations that have helped people or institutions deal with the effects of COVID-19?
  • How can the international community help to ensure that research and innovations related to COVID-19 are accessible to all?
  • What needs to be done to better engage society, counter misinformation and overcome apathy towards science in policy-making?

Register here by 27 October 2020: bit.ly/tech29oct

More information: bit.ly/hlab2020

The event is free and open to all, and will be streamed live on UN DESA’s Facebook page.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. 

[UN Day event] Multilateralism of the Future: How Will Global Cooperation Evolve in the 21 Century?

Join us for this important Geneva-based conversation on Oct. 22 to honor UN Day 2020!

UNTV live broadcast: webtv.un.org/

UN75 and the Global Conversation:

  • Fabrizio Hochschild, Under-Secretary-General, Special Adviser on the Preparations for the Commemoration
    of the UN 75 Anniversary

In-focus dialogue:

  • Mary Robinson, Chair of The Elders, former President of Ireland, and former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
  • Tatiana Valovaya, Director-General, United Nations Geneva

Moderators:

  • Alessandra Vellucci, Director at United Nations Information Service at Geneva
  • Francesco Pisano, Director, United Nations Geneva Library & Archives

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chars at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. 

High-level meeting of the GA to commemorate the UN’s 75th Anniversary

High-level meeting of the GA to commemorate the UN’s 75th Anniversary

Now live

Opening Plenary

Opening Statement by H.E. Volkan Bozkir, President of the General Assembly

Statement by H.E. Mr. Antonio Guterres, Seretary-General

Statement by H.E. Ambassador Abdou Abarry, President, Security Council

Statement by H.E. Ambassador Munir Akram, President, Economic and Social Council

Statement by H.E. Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf, President, International Court of Justice

Statement by Youth representatives

  • Ms. Akosua Adubea Agyepong, Ghana
  • Ms. Sharifah Norizah, Social Entrepreneur, Friends for Leadership (FFL), Malaysia
  • Mr. N. Charles Hamilton, Climate Change and Public Health Advocate, The Bahamas
  • Mr. Nathan Méténier, Environmental and Climate Youth Activist, France

Adoption of the UN75 Declaration

As we mark the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations, it is clear that the world has high expectations of us, as the main platform for multilateralism and cooperation on a rules-based international system.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres

Massive Online Open Course: Stakeholder Engagement for 2030 Agenda Implementation

Massive Open Online Course (MOOC): Strengthening stakeholder engagement for the implementation and review of the 2030 Agenda

A partnership between the Division for Sustainable Development Goals (DSDG) of UNDESA and UNITAR, this Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) aims at reaching out to a high number of governmental officials and other stakeholders such as UN staff, local governments, civil society and others who expressed an interest in taking this course.

The learning objectives of the course are:
1. To describe the rationale behind the need for Governments to engage with major groups and other stakeholders in formulating and reviewing SDG policies;
2. To learn how to map key national stakeholders with a special focus on those who are the furthest behind;
3. To assess the relevance of different models of engagement practiced by other countries as part of VNRs in their respective countries;
4. To identify practical ways to engage with key national stakeholders, including vulnerable groups, in the context of preparations for VNRs;
5. To develop long-term strategies for ensuring continuous stakeholder engagement as part of regular national review processes for the SDGs.

The MOOC is structured in three modules:
• Module 1. Understanding the need for stakeholder engagement in the 2030 Agenda at the national level
• Module 2. Learning about approaches and tools for strengthening stakeholder engagement for the SDGs
• Module 3. Designing successful strategies for stakeholder engagement in national implementation and review processes for Agenda 2030

Register now herehttps://bit.ly/MOOCSE2020b

a2030@unitar.org

Kind regards,
Division for Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable Development Goals Knowledge Platform: http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org

 

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