A selection of UN TV programmes, webcasts and video clips on issues in the news

Saturday, 30 January 2016

World Wetlands Day 2016, February 2nd.

World Wetlands Day, 2 February.
Journée mondiale des zones humides, le 2 Février.
Día Mundial de los Humedales, 2 de febrero.
世界濕地日, 2月2日。
Всемирный день водно-болотных угодий, 2 февраля.
 يوم العالمي للأراضي الرطبة، 2 فبراير.

Theme 2016 : Wetlands for our Future: Sustainable Livelihoods.
Thème 2016 : Les zones humides pour notre avenir: mode de vie durables.
Tema 2016 : Humedales para nuestro futuro: Medios de vida sostenibles.
2016年主題 :  濕地為我們的未來:可持續生計.
Тема 2016 : Водно-болотные угодья для нашего будущего : Устойчивые средства к существованию.
موضوع 2016: الأراضي الرطبة لمستقبلنا. سبل العيش المستدامة.

Every year on 2 February people in many countries come together to celebrate wetlands and their vital importance for the future of our planet.

Wetlands ensure our supply of fresh, drinkable water.  They grow a significant portion of the world’s food supply with fish and rice. Inland, wetlands act as sponges to slow down river flooding and they form coastal barriers against storm surges.  And just one single type of wetland – peatland - stores twice as much carbon as all of the forests in the world.

For World Wetlands Day 2016, there are over 800 events planned at various wetlands around the world to celebrate another benefit of wetlands: Sustainable Livelihoods.
More than a billion people around the world make their living directly from wetlands, doing jobs such as fishing, rice farming or handicrafts. Other sectors such as travel and eco-tourism, water transport and aquaculture all depend on healthy wetlands.
Yet some 64% of the world’s wetlands have disappeared since 1900; many of them converted to agricultural use or urban development.
 This alarming loss means it is urgent to help people understand that preserving wetlands does not have to mean restricting economic growth or depriving people of livelihoods. Quite the opposite!
2016 marks the dawn of a new era. The UN Sustainable Development Goals adopted last September map out the route from the vicious circle of environmental degradation towards a virtuous cycle where we preserve, restore and wisely use ecosystems precisely because they are vital for our prosperity. 
The new Ramsar Strategy 2016-2024 calls for wetland benefits to be featured in strategies and plans relating to key sectors such as water, energy, mining, agriculture, tourism, urban development, infrastructure, industry, forestry, aquaculture and fisheries at the national and local level.
 It also calls for wetland functions, services and benefits to be widely demonstrated and documented.
This is why, for World Wetlands Day 2016, the Ramsar Secretariat has assembled a range of inspiring stories that demonstrate how wetlands can and do provide sustainable livelihoods. You can read these stories.
As always, these support materials are made available with the support of the Danone-Evian Fund for Water, which has sponsored World Wetlands Day since 1997. 
We invite you to visit a wetland, get to know the local communities and how they wisely use this ecosystem. Parties to the Ramsar Convention have designated over 2200 Ramsar Sites of International Importance, protected for the benefits they provide to the country and the world.
To encourage the participation of young people, we are running a photo competition from 2 February to 2 March open to anyone aged 15 to 24 years. You are invited to capture an image showing how “wetlands are essential for sustainable livelihoods,” and upload as many as 3 photos to the World Wetlands Day website. The winner of the photo contest will enjoy a free flight to visit a wetland anywhere in the world, courtesy of Star Alliance.
Happy World Wetlands Day!  Let’s help everyone understand just how vital wetlands are! 
Ania Grobicki Acting

Wetlands are essential for human health and prosperity. They provide us with fresh water, ensure our food supply, sustain biodiversity, protect against flooding, and store carbon dioxide. As a major source of employment globally, they are also ideally placed to showcase truly sustainable livelihoods.

More than a billion livelihoods

Wetlands already sustain a vast range of jobs globally :
  • Almost a billion households in Asia, Africa and the Americas depend on rice growing and processing for their main livelihoods.
  • More than 660 million people rely on fishing and aquaculture for a living; most commercial fish breed or spawn in coastal wetlands, and 40 % of all fish consumed are raised in aquaculture.
  • An estimated half of international tourists seek relaxation in wetland areas, especially coastal zones. The travel and tourism sectors support 266 million jobs, and account for 8.9 % of the world’s employment.
  • Rivers and inland waterways play a vital role in transporting goods and people in many parts of the world. In the Amazon basin, 12 million passengers and 50 million tons of freight are moved each year by41 different shipping companies.
  • Vast networks deliver fresh water and treat wastewater around the world, while employing significant workforces. For example, Bangkok’s Metropolitan Waterworks Authority employs over 5,300 staff. 
  •  The bottled water industry delivered over 70 billion gallons of water worldwide in 2013. Danone sells major brands such as Evian and Volvic, Bonafont and Mizone, and employs more than 37,000 people in its water businesses worldwide.
  • Harvesting and processing plants,fruits, reeds and grasses also provide significant employment directlyin or near wetlands, especially in developing countries

Situation : a vicious circle

Despite all the jobs and other vital benefits that wetlands provide, 64 % of the world’s wetlands have disappeared since 1900. The wetlands that still remain are often so degraded that the people who directly rely on wetlands for their living – often the very poor –are driven into even deeper poverty. In addition, by 2025, it is estimated that 35 % of people will directly face declining water supplies. This is the result of a point of view that mistakenly sees wetlands as wasteland.
Solution : a virtuous cycle

Enabling people to make a decent living while ensuring that wetlands will always provide drinkable water, biodiversity, food and their many other benefits, do not have to be conflicting goals. In fact, the new UN Sustainable Development Goals underline that reducing poverty requires us to protect and restore ecosystems such as wetland.


Sustainability unites three key aspects of development to achieve that goal
  1. Economic development: ensuring that people have the ways and means to build their own income and wealth
  2. Social development: improving cooperation, respect and trust between social groups, and promoting gender equality
  3. Environmental protection: conserving and restoring the earth’s ecosystems to benefit both human life and the natural environment

How to create sustainable livelihoods: What are the key ingredients?

Use a people-centred approach to understand needs
  • assess how vulnerable people are to shocks, natural disasters and civil strife, and how to reduce that vulnerability
  •  understand how important seasonal prices and employment opportunities are, and explore other options
  •  take an inventory of the potential resources available
Make multiple kinds of ‘capital’ available
  •  actual products harvested from wetlands such as reeds, fish, rice etc.
  •  skills and knowledge to understand trade-offs and prioritizing good health to be able to earn a living
  •  a voice in planning how local wetlands should be used
  •  basic infrastructure, equipment and tools
  •  credit, cash or micro-loans

Identify who can provide the different kinds of ‘capital’ and make the changes happen
  •  integrate key actors such as governments, institutions, NGOs and local communities
  • determine who will take what role in making the changes

Forum :  World Wetlands Day - February 2

2016 World Wetlands Day theme- Wetlands for our Future: Sustainable Livelihoods
The Ramsar Secretariat announces Wetlands for our Future: Sustainable Livelihoods as the theme for World Wetlands Day in 2016. This theme is selected to demonstrate the vital role of wetlands for the future of humanity and specifically their relevance towards achieving the new Sustainable Development Goals.
Thanks to the financial support from Danone-Evian, the Secretariat is currently preparing outreach material to support country activities organized to celebrate World Wetlands Day and raise awareness about the value of wetlands for humanity.

Events :  World Wetlands Day 2016 events

World Wetlands Day
WWD 2016 Photo Contest "Wetlands are essential for sustainable livelihoods"

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust 2016 , January 27th.

Día Internacional de Commemoracion en memoria de las victimas del Holocausto, 27 de Enero.
紀念國際日大屠殺的受害者的記憶, 1月27日.


International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance
During the Second World War, six million Jews were systematically rounded up and exterminated.  The Nazis also murdered Sinti and Roma, political prisoners, homosexuals, persons with disabilities, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Soviet prisoners of war.
The Holocaust was a colossal crime.  No-one can deny the evidence that it happened.  By remembering the victims and honouring the courage of the survivors and those who assisted and liberated them, we annually renew our resolve to prevent such atrocities and reject the hateful mentality that allows them.
From the shadow of the Holocaust and the cruelties of the Second World War, the United Nations was established to reaffirm faith in the dignity and worth of every person and to uphold the rights of all to live in equality and free from discrimination.
These principles remain essential today.  People worldwide – including millions fleeing war, persecution and deprivation – continue to suffer discrimination and attacks.  We have a duty to remember the past – and to help those who need us now.
For more than a decade, the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme has worked to educate young people about the Holocaust.  Many partners – including Holocaust survivors – continue to contribute to this essential work.
The memory of the Holocaust is a powerful reminder of what can happen when we stop seeing our common humanity.  On this day of Holocaust remembrance, I urge everyone to denounce political and religious ideologies that set people against people.  Let us all speak out against anti-Semitism and attacks against religious, ethnic or other groups.  Let us create a world where dignity is respected, diversity is celebrated, and peace is permanent.

EVENTS :  2016 Calendar of Holocaust Remembrance.
The theme for the Holocaust remembrance and education activities in 2016, including the Holocaust Memorial Ceremony, is “The Holocaust and Human Dignity”. The theme links Holocaust remembrance with the founding principles of the United Nations and reaffirms faith in the dignity and worth of every person that is highlighted in the United Nations Charter, as well as the right to live free from discrimination and with equal protection under the law that is enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Holocaust, which resulted in the destruction of nearly two thirds of European Jewry, remains one of the most painful reminders of the international community’s failure to protect them.
Monday, 25 January 2016
  • Exhibit Opening "Holocaust by Bullets” (Private reception by invitation only)
    Venue: Visitors’ Lobby, General Assembly Building
    Time: 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

    The exhibition "Holocaust by Bullets" presents the results of hundreds of days of fieldwork that enabled Yahad-In Unum to collect evidence of massacres during the Second World War in order to in order to return memory and dignity to Jewish victims. It also underscores the "Holocaust by Bullets" as a precursor and model for mass crimes today. The exhibit is organized by the Permanent Mission of France to the United Nations. Special guest at the exhibit opening: Father Patrick Desbois, President of Yahad-In Unum. The exhibition will be on view through 9 February 2016.
Tuesday, 26 January 2016
  • Exhibit Opening “Life after Survival” (by invitation only)

    Venue: Visitors’ Lobby, General Assembly Building
    Time: 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.


    “Life after Survival” opening of an exhibit on child Holocaust survivors cared for by the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration at Kloster Indersdorf, in the American Zone in Germany. Sponsored by Concentration Camp Memorial Site Flossenbürg, Permanent Mission of Germany to the United Nations, and Heimatverein Indersdorf and Lagergemeinschaft Dachau. Special guests at the exhibit opening: several Holocaust survivors who appear in the historical photos and Anna Andlauer, exhibition curator. The exhibition will be on view through 9 February 2016.
Wednesday, 27 January 2016
  • United Nations Holocaust Memorial Ceremony
    International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust
    Venue: General Assembly Hall
    Time: 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.


    The event will be hosted by Ms. Cristina Gallach, Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information. Invited speakers include United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon; H. E. Mr. Mogens Lykketoft, President of the seventieth session of the General Assembly; H.E. Mr. Danny Danon, Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations; H.E. Ms. Samantha Power, Permanent Representative of the United States to the United Nations and H.E. Mr. Felix Klein, Special Representative for relations with Jewish Organizations, issues relating to Anti-Semitism and Holocaust Remembrance. In addition, Mr. Szabolcs Takács, the Chair of the Holocaust Remembrance Alliance will make a statement. Ms. Barbara Winton will open a video tribute to her father, Sir Nicholas Winton, who rescued 669 children from the Holocaust on the Czech Kindertransport.    
    Mrs. Beate Klarsfeld (Germany) will be keynote speaker. Personal testimony will be delivered by Jewish Holocaust survivors Mrs. Marta Wise and Mr. Haim Roet, and by Mr. Zoni Weisz, a Sinto survivor. The Holocaust memorial prayers will be recited by cantor Gideon Zelermyer. He will be accompanied by Shaar Hashomayim Synagogue Choir from Montreal (Canada). Roma musicians Antal Kopar (guitar) and Bela Horvath (violin) will play during the ceremony. The event will conclude with a performance by the United States Military Academy at West Point Jewish Chapel Choir.
  • Concert and Lecture (by invitation only)

    In Memoriam: Hungarian Composers – Victims of the Holocaust

    Venue: Permanent Mission of Hungary to the United Nations
    Time: 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

    “In Memoriam: Hungarian Composers – Victims of the Holocaust” will introduce the work of Hungarian composers of Jewish origin who were murdered during the Holocaust. The stories of these composers remain largely unknown. All of them died young, before being able to fulfill their potential. In spite of the adverse circumstances, they had produced work of value. The event will feature a concert by the professors of the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music: Vilmos Szabadi (violin), Mariann Marczi (piano) and Eszter Karasszon (cello), who will perform pieces by Hungarian composers Béla Bartók, Zoltán Kodály, Lajos Delej, György Justus and Imre Sárossi. The program will include a lecture by Agnes Kory, founder of the Béla Bartók Centre for Musicianship in London. The event is part of the commemorative events dedicated to Hungary’s Chairmanship of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA).
Thursday, 28 January 2016
  • United Nations Department of Public Information NGO Briefing
    “The Future of Holocaust Education”
    Venue: Conference Room 4
    Time: 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.


    This briefing brings together experts from academic institutions and international organizations, researchers, educators and authors who will examine current trends in Holocaust research and education. Key questions to be addressed include how to expand teacher training and Holocaust education around the world; how to adapt to a changing environment with the rise of multicultural classroom settings and fewer and fewer eye witnesses to testify to the Holocaust and what role international organizations have to play in the field.

    The panellists will include Szabolcs Takács, Chair of IHRA, International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance; Debórah Dwork, Rose Professor of Holocaust History and Director, Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Clark University; Professor Zehavit Gros, Chairholder, UNESCO/Burg Chair in Education for Human Values, Tolerance and Peace, Bar-llan University; Cecilie Felicia Stokholm Banke, Senior Researcher, Danish Institute for International Studies and Jane Jacobs-Kimmelman, Director of the International Relations Department at the International School for Holocaust Studies at Yad Vashem. The discussion will be moderated by Kimberly Mann, the Chief of the Education Outreach Section in the Outreach Division of the United Nations Department of Public Information.
Thursday, 28 January 2016
  • Film Screening "Woman in Gold"

    Venue: Trusteeship Council
    Time: 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.


    The Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme, in partnership with the World Jewish Congress and the Weinstein Company, will organize the film screening and discussion that will shed light on the loss of personal property and humiliation that Jewish families endured in Nazi-occupied Europe, and how difficult it has been for them to attain justice. Participants will gain insight into the desperate situation faced by the victims of the Holocaust under a reign of terror and the complete breakdown of fair legal practice. For many families, the plunder of art and personal assets remains one of many unsolved transgressions committed by the Nazis.

    Directed by Simon Curtis, Woman in Gold is the remarkable true story of one woman’s journey to reclaim her heritage and seek justice for what happened to her family. Sixty years after she fled Vienna during the Second World War, Maria Altmann (Helen Mirren), an elderly Jewish woman, starts her journey to retrieve family possessions seized by the Nazis,among them Klimt's famous painting Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I. Together with her inexperienced but plucky young lawyer, Randy Schoenberg (Ryan Reynolds), she embarks upon a major battle that takes them all the way to the heart of the Austrian establishment and the United States Supreme Court, and forces her to confront difficult truths about the past along the way.

    Participants at the New York event will include Ms. Cristina Gallach, United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information; Mr. Simon Curtis, Director, Woman in Gold, Ms. Evelyn Sommer, Chair, World Jewish Congress, North America, Ms. Monica Dugot, International Director of Restitution, Christie’s, and Mr. Simon Wesley A. Fisher, Director of Research, Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, Inc. and Head of Claims Conference-WJRO Looted Art and Cultural Property Initiative.

Worldwide Events : International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance


Holocaust Museums and Memorials

The '' Year in Review 2015'' United Nations

The "UN Year in Review 2015" remembers once more the daunting challenges the United Nations faced in its 70th anniversary year - but also gives a glimpse of what can be achieved, when we all work together

An historic agreement on climate change which commits countries to keeping global temperature rises to below two degrees Celsius. Adoption of a new global agenda that promises a sustainable future for all people and the planet. A call from Pope Francis urging leaders to do more for the world's most disadvantaged people in times of peace and war. These were some of the top stories covered by UN Radio over the past year.

Tackling the Ebola Crisis. Assisting a record number of refugees fleeing violence. Guaranteeing Women's and LGBT Rights. Spearheading an ambitious new global Climate Change agreement. These are just a few of the UN's most pressing challenges from 2015. From our peacekeepers on the ground, to the halls of the U.N. Security Council, these 100 photos present a unique view of the UN's efforts over the past year to ensure human rights and international peace and security for all.

One of the rationales for why international organizations are necessary is that they act as force multipliers. Solving problems that cross international borders requires coordinated action, and international organizations like the UN orchestrate a global response.

Global Risks 2016 ( World Economic Forum)

This 11th edition of The Global Risks Report is published at a time of profound change. Global risks materialize in new and unexpected ways and are becoming more imminent as their consequences reach people, institutions and economies.

The 10 risks in terms of Likelihood, Top 10 risks in terms of Impact. By Categories
Over the past decade, The Global Risks Report has expanded its scope from analysing the interconnected and rapidly evolving nature of global risks to also putting forward actionable solutions and calling for public-private collaboration in strengthening resilience. Now in its 11th edition, the Report describes a world in which risks are becoming more imminent and have wide-ranging impact: tensions between countries affect businesses; unresolved, protracted crises have resulted in the largest number of refugees globally since World War II; terrorist attacks take an increasing toll on human lives and stifle economies; droughts occur in California and floods in South Asia; and rapid advances in technologies are coupled with ever-growing cyber fragilities and persistent unemployment and underemployment.
Implications of sweeping digitization (also termed the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”), ranging from transformations that are the result of rising cyber connectivity to the potential effects of innovations on socioeconomic equality and global security, remain far from fully understood. At the same time, climate change is unequivocally happening, and there is no turning back time.
The increasing volatility, complexity and ambiguity of the world not only heightens uncertainty around the “which”, “when”, “where” and “who” of addressing global risks, but also clouds the solutions space. We need clear thinking about new levers that will enable a wide range of stakeholders to jointly address global risks, which cannot be dealt with in a centralized way.
Taken together, this calls for a resilience imperative – an urgent necessity to find new avenues and more opportunities to mitigate, adapt to and build resilience against global risks and threats through collaboration among different stakeholders.
By putting the resilience imperative at its core, this year’s Global Risks Report combines four parts to present an analysis of different aspects of global risks – across both global risks and stakeholders – focused as much on the search for solutions as on the analysis of the risks themselves.
From the refugee crisis to economic slowdowns in emerging markets, from ever-rising numbers of terrorist and cyberattacks to water shortages, global risks have been in the headlines in the last year. Yet so have initiatives to address them, such as the COP21 meeting on reducing greenhouse gas emissions or European Union (EU) summits to address the refugee crisis. The Global Risks Report exists to raise awareness about global risks and their potential interconnections, and to provide a platform for discussion and action to mitigate, adapt and strengthen resilience.

United Nations Conferences and Incentives 2015 :

International Years :

 International Days :

Flagship Titles of 2015


70 Years, 70 documents - Dag Hammarskjöld Library

International Human Solidarity Day 2015, December 20th.

Тема 2015 года «Всеобщий прогресс и процветание благодаря глобальной солидарности»
2015 Theme: Shared Progress & Prosperity based on global solidarity.
Tema del 2015: Prosperidad y progreso compartidos y basados en la solidaridad mundial.
Thème 2015 : « Progrès et prospérité partagés et fondés sur la solidarité mondiale »
موضوع 2015 — تقدم ورخاء مشتركين قائمين على التضامن العالمي

Sustainable Development Goals

United Nations Secretary-General's Message for the International Human Solidarity Day 2015.

By adopting the historic 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, world leaders expressed their resolve to seek shared progress and prosperity based on a spirit of global solidarity. The Paris Agreement on climate change marks another important milestone for our planet and all people.

These achievements were driven by two complementary goals:  to leave no one behind, and to build a life of dignity for all.  This spirit of global solidarity t must now inspire our collective response to other major challenges facing humankind.

This is especially true in addressing plight of the record number of people around the world forced from their homes and communities.  Far too many have fled violent extremists only to be victimized again by xenophobia, discrimination and abuse.  We must collectively challenge all those who stoke unfounded fears.  Helping the vulnerable elevates us all.

With diversity under verbal and violent attack in so many parts of the world, let us make the most of International Human Solidarity Day by reaffirming our common humanity, defending our shared values and creating a better future for all.

Ban Ki-moon
This Report starts with a fundamental question—how can work enhance human development? The Report takes a broad view of work, going beyond jobs and taking into account such activities as unpaid care work, voluntary work and creative work—all of which contribute to the richness of human lives.
Work for Human Development :  Human Development Report 2015 - UNDP