The Invisible Messengers

Al-Quds Al-Arabi

In the hectic environment of the World Health Organization (WHO), all around the room there was a myriad of kids wearing suits, dresses, and fancy shoes that, eventually, they all merge to create one gray, black, and navy blur of colors. Amongst them, note passers could be seen if you look just hard enough. They are visible in the eyes of who look but invisible to the busy delegates.

Note passers, the innocent messengers of the committee. Although, no one seems to take into account the great power they possess. Delegates put their complete trust in complete strangers regarding completely important issues. Knowing this, some note passers tend to utilize their power. Whether for malicious intent or just for the fun of it, delegates do get exposed for the shortest of moment until the piece of paper is passed to the person it was being delivered to. Even more so, the interesting part for note passers is not how Algeria is trying to ally with Ireland, it is the written flirts and the occasional winky face drawn on the inside of the tiny paper.

One note passer in the World Health Organization (WHO), who asked to remain anonymous, stated, “The first few notes are fine. However, I would draw the line on passing chocolates to delegates.” After hearing the statement, Al-Quds Al-Arabi asked the delegate to elaborate, to which the delegate replied, “I’m pretty tired of countries mixing business with pleasure. I did contemplate just reading the whole interaction [made through notes] out loud.”

After the brief interview with the anonymous note passer, hopefully the situation will be brought to light and be no more.

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Delegation of Iran valiantly solves international crisis

irna-news-agency-logo

The United Nations DISEC is tasked with resolving the Rogun Dam international crisis. A diplomatic and peaceful resolution lies within the working paper of the Delegation of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

To watch the video, click here.

 

The HEART Resolution

The Straits Times

“We cannot and should not stop people from migration. We have to give them a better life at home. Migration is a process, not a problem” William L. Swing

Once the merging process was over in the Social, Cultural and Humanitarian Committee, all countries found themselves arguing and debating on the strengths and weaknesses of the many drafts of resolutions that have been proposed.

Actually, it is really breathtaking and flabbergasting to see how 193 countries are reunited, all together, working hand in hand, in order to find a solution for this serious problem.

Even though each delegation looks for her personal interest, they all agreed and stood against the same controversial issue : migration-related xenophobia, racism, and violence.

Actually, we were strongly astonished by the unexpected alliance between countries such as Iran and The United States that were considered as enemies thus far.

But sometimes, the debate got tense and violent in a certain way.  Donald Trump and The United States have been attacked more that once since they haven’t treated conflict concerning migrants in the same manner.

Nevertheless, these alternatives adopted by the delegations are quite utopian. Indeed, many pertinent solutions have been proposed, but most of them are not realistic and cannot be applied in countries where migrants are constantly victims of the society.  In fact, France, South Africa or Nigeria have serious issues in the society where migrants are persecuted and exposed to economic discrimination. In some cases and in particular countries in Africa, such as Libya, migrants are victims of slavery, migrants are abused, migrants are facing the omnipresent risk of human trafficking. In order to find an ideal resolution that can satisfy the maximum of countries, delegates discussed the majority of the solutions that have been proposed. Therefore, during the first un-mod, many blocks merged with a main goal which is to find specific and realistic solutions that every country can put in order.

For many hours, the committee has been divided into many groups that couldn’t just find a common ground to work on.

But, finally, after long hours of debate, the tension between the different emergent blocks started to disappear.

Thus, three main blocks appeared miraculously when they have reached an agreement threw negotiations.

On one hand, we have « the HEART integration draft resolution » that covers 83 signatories.

On the other one, we have « Here today for a better tomorrow » with 73 signatories.

Last but not least, the « one hope with open arms » contains 57 signatories.

After the amendment process, the resolutions globally suited all countries’ policies. Even if, in the beginning of the debate, the delegations were not ready to collaborate.

The time for the vote came, and the tension was at its highest level…

The HEART resolution directed by Russia has been chosen, and its main values are :     

  1.  Humanitarian Crisis and Hate Crimes,
  2. Education, and Economic Empowerment of Migrants,
  3. Assistance to Migrants in Need,
  4. Reviewing National Priorities,
  5. Terrorism and Security of Migrants.

To cut a long story short, the SOCHUM Committee has been going through a lot : tension, laughs, arguments, anger, stress.But it has finally found, its own path to a better world and a humanitarian solution.

And, as Jan Eliasson said: “Without peace there is no development, and without development there is no peace.”

Bahrain’s Case

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After much debate and a request from the Dais for mergers, the various collaborations at the Special Political and Decolonization Committee came together to create three main resolutions. On one side of the room, STAND (headed by Russia and China) and DARE (led by Togo and Portugal) combined to create the “DARE to STAND” coalition against secession and for territorial integrity. On the other hand, a group of mediators came together to create the PRESS cooperation. Though much bigger than the original DANCE, this pro-mediator resolution is still led by Mexico and Switzerland who stand for dialogue, the incorporation of the United Nations into secession decisions in the most unbiased way possible and provide an “economic initiation” program for new seceded countries. Finally, the IRAC coalition, led by Bahrain and Oman propose to represent what they believe are smaller, pro-secessionist and unrepresented countries on a global stage. These three strong partnerships had been presented to the committee, and the delegates were ready to read and vote on resolutions. However, there’s a catch.

Before any other motions could be proposed for presentations of these draft resolutions, the chair swiftly announced that he would only accept two resolutions (in place of three) which would require 100 signatories, much more than they had originally planned. The leaders of “DARE to STAND” and the “PRESS” cooperation (stands for People’s Reform for Enforcing Systematic Secession) moved quickly request an unmoderated caucus in an effort to convince the smaller, but no less mighty IRAC to join them. Then, it became a race for time. There were only 13 minutes left in the unmod and still a large number of signatories to collect. Niger ran around frantically, convincing the lone delegates to sign their signatories, asking members with the opposite stance if they could reconsider, and even asked the Press if they could be a signatory. Yet, these efforts were not enough, both the “PRESS” and ““DARE to STAND” groups knew the answer, to appeal to the smaller IRAC cooperation.

Leading the IRAC group was Bahrain, who stands stands for the representation of smaller countries, like his own. According to the chair, however, the IRAC cooperation was oddly similar to the “PRESS” and so therefore, IRAC should consider a merger. However, Bahrain refused to become a signatory for either of the two. Bahrain knew he was in no position to demand signatories; lagging drastically behind other cooperation’s. Resulting from the time crunch and need to move forward, countries once loyal to the Bahraini delegation were compelled to move toward other coalitions. Even then, on the verge of passing resolutions, Bahrain would not budge “for the sake of smaller countries” and refused to become a signatory because by doing so, according to the delegate, his country could be to consent to “dirty politics”. Now on the verge of abandonment by all of his supporters and the rise of the two main resolutions, Bahrain is now forced to abstain from voting in an effort to maintain its identity.

Education: The Solution to Everything

Al-Quds Al-Arabi

With more and more refugees bustling into and out of different nations across the globe, one is left to wonder what will become of issues such as maintaining an adequate supply of sanitary water and edible food, and monitoring and addressing of various health concerns, such as AIDS and tuberculosis. One of the primary driving forces to combat these kinds of problems is, of course, the UN’s very own World Health Organization (WHO).

In the first and second committee sessions, delegates attempted to tackle the aforementioned matters and bustled to make their voices heard. The tension in the room was palpable. The more powerful countries appeared to prefer to fund, but not take in refugees while the lesser developed nations vied for special treatment, such as extra funding and donations, from the more powerful countries. A matter that appeared the most controversial was the issue of refugee health: female refugee health in particular. Delegates from countries such as France, Nauru, and the USA strongly and openly stated that proper awareness, funding, and education were the right solutions to the these issues.

Delegates all had reached the same consensus that female refugees needed extra attention, supplies, and clinics. Statistics show that female refugees make up 73% of the total amount. With more and more female refugees going through hard times, all the while lacking essentials such as menstrual pads and maternal tools, the delegate of France offered up a solution for the problem. France stated that after the influx of refugees increased in the country, France actively started setting up maternity centers and clinics, OBGYN services, and offering child care. However, despite the proposed models being of great effect in France, lesser developed countries started to raise questions about what they could do, with such little funding and necessities available. To this, the delegates of USA, Switzerland, and Belgium offered to generously help fund the refugee care expenses in the lesser developed nations. Following through, nations such as Colombia, Brazil, and Nauru addressed the problem of sexual assault, breastfeeding, and cultural changes, to which, again, the more affluent nations such as the US and Switzerland offered solutions like family locating skills, more generous donations, and basic self protection classes.

Al-Quds Al-Arabi would like to point out that education, although having success in a number of instances, has, in general, been extremely inadequate in solving a variety of problems effectively. In the instance of Mauritania in 1977, it was a situation similar to the current refugee crisis. In order to solve the predicament, many nations all around the world attemped to use education to solve the issue. Regardless to say, after the resolution was passed the morale in the refugee camp dropped and costs for daily necessities, like food and water, increased as people started demanding nourishment for the mental work they were doing. With this sharp difference between the reality and the theoretical benefits of refugee education, the nations in the committee had to reconvene and come up with more immediately impactful and practical solutions, which ended up being improving the refugee’s health by treating malnutrition and dehydration, helping and supporting women, and treating mental illnesses.

At the end of the second committee session, two major blocs and four smaller blocs had formed, scattered across the committee room, alight with delegate brainstorming debates. In one major bloc, a UK-led bloc, which appeared well-organized and crisp,  as they first introduced themselves with a name, LINC. The name stands for Locating Initial Points of Concern, International Cooperation, Necessary Infrastructure Development, Combatting Substantive Living Conditions of Refugees. As the questioning process started the delegate of the UK started off with how they were prioritizing women’s health, combating sexual harassment, human rights violations along with the food, water, disease, and ghost refugee issues. Being one of the major blocs with the seemingly best solutions for the problems, they were fighting for their own working papers to pass into a resolution.

In general, across the whole committee, there was widespread agreement that education is the prime solution to all the problems that had thus been talked about. Almost every country, for almost every moderated caucus, for almost all issues presented, had offered educating and raising awareness as the appropriate model. However, we are left to wonder about how to successfully educate refugees that do not have the physical and mental means. Although creating a well-educated community of refugees seems to be the best solution in the eyes of the countries present, we are left to wonder how they would solve the issue of malnutrition and dehydration. Although education is doubtless beneficial, it seems more of a cruel burden to place upon refugees, who have been through traumatizing ordeals and have lost family members, to be forced to go to school while sickly and without having their basic livelihood needs met.

 

Education: The Key of the Future

The Strait Times

Nelson Mandela said : “Education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world”.

As we all know, this year’s conference theme is Empowerment and Education. Indeed, it is quite impressive to see how education has such an influence on the issue treated by the Social, Cultural and Humanitarian Committee.

Actually, it is in the heart of the committee and it is the main preoccupation of all the delegations.

The SOCHUM committee is facing a quite controversial issue that is directly related to the human rights. Indeed, the migration-related xenophobia, racism and violence around the world has increased since the recent migrant crises. In fact, we have reached 258 million migrants worldwide in 2017, each with different motives going from job seeking to fleeing war.

However, today, the abuse of illegal immigrants grows close to a new kind of slavery. Recently, in Libya, African women and men, human beings, have been sold like objects. Yet, we are in 2018 and these actions that are considered as slavery have been abolished since centuries ago!

Furthermore, the most efficient solution against xenophobia, racism and violence is directly linked with this year’s theme.

In order to eradicate this problem, all countries found themselves arguing about which solution they should adopt and apply. The majority of the delegates explained this behavior towards migrants with a lack of education and awareness. Therefore, the long-term solution that could fix what is going on is education: an “easy and mature way” to eradicate discrimination said the Nigerian delegate. In order to ensure maximum security of the migrants in the society, the mentalities need to be changed. In this case, education is the perfect sustainable solution.

Concerning the short-term alternatives, many delegates emphasized on the fact that communication is key.

Social media is an excellent way being sensitivity to the population. Through the use of hashtags on popular social medias such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, society’s mentality in general will be influenced and aware. Hopefully, the migrants will be integrated and treated the way they deserve to be.

The enforcement of legislation is a solution that should be adopted from all countries. The government also has to put limits to this abuse of migrants through specific laws that are also in favor of migrants. Moreover, the government needs to give them the opportunity to work and live a normal life with rights and the ability to build a family.

In a nutshell, to solve any kind of issue in general, education is the most efficient way. It allows the transmission of humanitarian values to populations’ minds from the beginning and prevents the potential existence of such inhuman acts.

LGBTQ rights and global acceptance

Al-Jazeera

And the 65th session of the HMUN commences, with conversations taking a rather interesting turn at the UNHRC committee room. Countries from across the globe don’t spare a minute as they bring their views to the table, views spread over a spectrum so broad that it ranges from Russia to France; views based on religion so extreme that they range from being absolutely against and severely intolerant towards homosexuality versus those more welcoming and kind to those qualified as “different”. Religion and LGBTQ are not two elements that react too well with each other which is why “religious reasons” have so much so resulted in the outbreak of violence when it has come to LGBTQ rights. Islam and Catholic Christians are seen as religions most against homosexuality. Islam however, on the very same note claims to be an extremely peaceful religion which is why it would be wrong to carry out terrorist attacks on homosexual individuals in the name of the aforementioned religion.

At the UNHCR committee session, the discussion generally revolved around the differing views that countries had on homosexuality based on their religious, or rather atheistic values. LGBTQ rights usually go head to head in a battleground with Islam whenever the discussion comes to religion. In the history of Islam, during the reign of the caliph Hazrat Umar people who refused to live by the rules of Islam were allowed to do so without any punishments or violence of any kind.

Al Jazeera, being the liberal news agency that it is, supported the points put forward by nations such as the US and France which had to say that no one has the right to prosecute anyone for their sexuality. Al Jazeera believes that everybody is entitled to choosing their own identity.

Heterogeneity in the Disarmament and International Security Committee Raises Significant Tension

Islamic Republic News Agency

Despite a universal belief that the weaponization of natural resources is an extremely concerning issue, delegates of the Disarmament and International Security Committee (DISEC) seem to lack a ubiquitous solution. Over the course of several moderated caucuses, delegates proposed a diverse array of possible solutions to the weaponization of natural resources, but very few coincided. This lead into heated debates fueled by contrasting perspectives that hindered the overall diplomatic process of resolution drafting.

During a ten-minute moderated caucus on the definition of the weaponization of natural resources, the Delegation of the Dominican Republic advanced to the podium and similar to the other speakers, began their speech with a statement on the significance of defining weaponization of natural resources. Differentiating themselves from the other delegates of the caucus, they stated that the best course of action to define the weaponization of natural resources was by “creating a committee of NGOs [Non-Governmental Organizations].” However, interest in this proposal appeared dim. In response to the Dominican Republic’s speech, the delegation of Iceland responded that they believed that all responsibility toward the weaponization of natural resources should be “in the hands of the government.” They continued to say that “the role of the government is to moderate its own people, and governments shouldn’t rely on other organizations to deal with the weaponization of natural resources.”

The next momentous proposal came from the Delegation of South Africa. After informing the other delegates on the mortality of inconsistent resource tracking methods, they proposed the “creation of a resource tracking matrix–or an RTM–that could be implemented into nations on their own volition. This can be used on a case-by-case basis based on what resource they want to be tracked. … These resource tracking matrices can be used to help track resources and … [prevent] terrorism.” Following the trend set by the Dominican Republic, their proposal was quickly rebuked in the following un-moderated caucus.

A plethora of other proposals was scattered across the committee. The United States and United Kingdom proposed policy on climate change reduction as a form of resource weaponization diminution. One bloc between Swaziland, Sierra Leona, and Zimbabwe seek to focus on resolving resource weaponization in the African continent by radicalizing international trade legislation. It is conspicuous that as the committee continues tensions will rise between delegates who represent varying proposals.

Delegates appeared to be unambiguous on their relative solutions to the issues of the weaponization of natural resources. This is a concerning insight due to the seriousness of the topic. With thousands of citizens dying a month due to the famine in Yemen and countless resource-dependent economies failing, the lack of consensus in the DISEC presents a challenging perturbation for delegates to overcome. Even so, deep within the impregnable darkness, lies an immense potential for powerful and inclusive resolutions. If the delegates overcome their stubbornness in approach and work together to merge and connect their multifarious proposals, then an all-encompassing resolution can be passed that benefits all countries of concern.

Russia’s Controversial Stance Rallies Unionists

El Mundo

The Special Political and Decolonization Committee, or SPECPOL in easier terms, began with a long list of speakers. Soon, however, it boiled down to intense moderated caucuses as passionate delegates fought for that 45 second spotlight. Leading the way on the secession topic is unsurprisingly, Russia, a recognized leader in world affairs.

The Federation of Russia made its claim loud and clear from the beginning of the conference, being the first country to propose a different view from the repeated pro-secessionist sentiment, reminding countries that the United Nations must first consider and respect the power of the “parent nation” as the delegate of Russia called it. This idea immediately spoke to many countries. Within seconds of the Moderator announcing the beginning of the first unmoderated caucus, Russia disappeared behind a crowd of delegates dying to talk with the Russia representative; Russia had clearly been communicating with similar delegations.  

More than 30 countries surrounded the Russian Federation, each trying to make their voices heard. Finland was one of the first to make a pitch on remedial secession movements in relation to human rights, giving examples in South Sudan. Others followed. Countries like Guyana, Singapore, Iran, Saints and Kitts, Lebanon, New Zealand, France and Spain rallied behind the leaders of this new alliance. In the midst of discussion, China stood in the middle of the blurred circle stating that the international community as well as individual countries and regions must “protect territorial integrity and pursue internal process to decide if a movement can obtain independence”. Before any countries could respond, however, the unmoderated caucus ended. But when an extension was granted a few minutes later, leading Russia had returned with a clear idea for their resolution.

 

Russia’s resolution proposed a document that contained important “internal instruments” to assess rights and concerns of secession whilst still acknowledging the countries historical background and considering the validity of the movement. Russia also proposed to provide a “national buffer system” to deal with secession movements internally before addressing the international community. Russia’s drive combined with China’s brilliance lead the way for a resolution that protects national sovereignty regarding secession.

Upon further inspection, one can see that the Spanish delegation has joined this committee, yet South Sudan seems to be missing. Both these countries are in the process or suffering the backlashes of secession. The Spanish representative claims to be against the Catalonia separatist movements, claiming this region is “at this point not economically strong” to sustain itself independently. South Sudan on the other hand stated that although they are pro-secession for human right violation instances they would warn countries of the economic and political consequences the separations could cause. To protect its economy, Spain seems to have joined the correct alliance, a unionist one.  

It is still unclear how far these Russian proposals’ will go, but they all definitely have a valid claim in resolving the ongoing conflict on the controversy that comes with secession movements.