International Women’s Day 2013

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by Jacqueline Douniama; translation by Claudia Bragman

On 7 March 2013, the “International Women’s Day; Protection & Promoting Women’s Rights” conference was held in the Palais des Nations. This was a taster session before the International Women’s Day taking place the next day. If anyone thought that this event only catered for radical feminists, they were wrong. On the contrary, the conference was led by a variety of key figures (although, one must admit that men were in the minority). These individuals came from various regions and most of them were lecturers, directors or representatives of international organisations that aim to develop women’s rights in specific contexts. Read the rest of this entry »

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Reforming the Working Methods of the UN Security Council

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by Lena Becker

On October 31st, the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva organized a conference on “Reforming the working methods of the United Nations Security Council”. It assembled a group of high-profile academics and practitioners working  on UN issues, including the Deputy Permanent Representative of Germany to the United Nations in Geneva and Ambassador of Switzerland to the United Nations. The occasion was a reform proposal by Small Five (Switzerland, Costa Rica, Liechtensctein, Jordan, Singapore) from April 2012. (For more information, please see : http://graduateinstitute.ch/corporate/resources/events_types/calendarofevents_en.html?evenementId=148008.) Read the rest of this entry »

Swiss Courts Prosecute International Crimes

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by Alexandra Ilic; translated into English by Claudia Bragman

(Conference-debate on Thursday 15 November 2012)

This debate was organised by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) together with the Academy of Humanitarian Law. Participants included Dr. Sévane Garibian, doctor of law, Professor Marco Sassoli, also a former delegate of the ICRC, Maître Philip Grant, lawyer and TRIAL director, and Maitre Philippe Currat, lawyer and doctor of law.

As Maitre Philip Grant underlined, such an event could never have taken place or, at least, never have brought together so many people 20 years ago. Therefore, the very existence of this conference does indeed prove that a new culture, fighting against impunity, is emerging. Read the rest of this entry »

The Challenges of Global Governance in a Changing World

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Camille Dufresne ; translated into English by Claudia Bragman

On Thursday 25 October Mr Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, the Director General of the United Nations Office in Geneva, made a speech as part of the various programmes led by the University of Geneva to celebrate Switzerland’s 10-year membership to the UN. Mr Tokayev initially defined the current major upheavals; he then went on to discuss their repercussions on the UN. Read the rest of this entry »

Switzerland’s Commitments as a Neutral State within the United Nations

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by Jacqueline Douniama ; translatetd into English by Claudia Bragman

The UN is the most well-known organisation across the globe. It has a strong presence in the media, where it is mentioned almost daily. It strives to maintain peace and guarantee international security. It is interesting to try and understand how Switzerland contributes to UN projects. The Swiss Foreign Policy Forum (« Foraus ») organised an conference on 17 October 2012 and this provided us with more information on the topic. Read the rest of this entry »

Youth Perspectives 3rd edition / 29 Nov – 2 Dec 2012

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by Marie-Ambrym Thivoyon ; translated into English by Claudia Bragman

From 29 November to 2 December 2012, around fifty young students and professionals from all around the world gathered for Youth Perspectives organised by GIMUN. This event was unlike the annual conference held in March where students speak as State delegates. In this case, Youth Perspectives gives each person the opportunity to express him or herself as an individual and debate on topics related to youth, using their own experiences. The theme of the event was « the role of young people in achieving the Millennium Development Goals » and the aim was to find concrete solutions for reducing poverty in areas of migration, voluntary work, social media and unemployment. Consequently, the participants were divided into four discussion groups of around twelve people who were supervised by two moderators. Read the rest of this entry »

Switzerland’s 10 Year Membership to the UN

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Joachim Leger; translated into English by Claudia Bragman

On 24 October, the “Decade” jubilee took place at the Palais des Nations. The event was held to celebrate Switzerland’s 10 year membership to the UN. It was centred around several main topics (human rights, security council reform, disarmament, peacebuilding, the environment and ethnic minorities). These reflect various issues that Switzerland has highlighted as a Member State. GIMUN worked with the SAJV, JUNES and Youth Rep to organise the festivities. (For more information, go to http://decade2012.webs.com/organizers.) Read the rest of this entry »