GIMUN blog

Time to say goodbye to stereotypes

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This article was published in the printed version of the GIMUN Chronicles, the newspaper of GIMUN’s Annual Conference 2016, two months ago. We thought we’d give you a chance to rediscover it!

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By Michelle Bognuda

In today’s world, people are forced to leave their homeland because of wars. January and February are particularly special months for Ticino’s young people because this is the time when carnival celebrations take place. Although these two statements do not seem to be linked, this year there was a logical connection. Swiss cantons which border other countries, such as Ticino or Geneva, are particularly touchy about immigrants, people in search of political asylum and, last but not least, cross-border workers. Read the rest of this entry »

Your cameras can free Palestine

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The GIMUN 2016 Annual Conference, held from March 7th to 11th at the Palais des Nations, in Geneva, gathered around 200 students for a model UN. Yes, it was over a month ago, but it turns out the GIMUN Chronicles journalists had not said their last word! When the conference ended, they still had a few more articles left for us…

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Crédit : Facebook / youthagainstsettlement

By Valentina San Martin, translated by John Ryan-Mills

Freedom is relative : although everyone is born free, various laws continually force people to spend their lives living in restricted freedom. As Jean-Jacques Rousseau said, “man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”.

During the first Arab-Israeli war, which began in 1948,the Israelis took control of a large area of land that still forms part of their state today. The partition which followed this war led to the forced exodus of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians, who for the most part took shelter in neighboring countries such as Lebanon, Jordan, or Syria. At present, Palestine remains an occupied and marginalized territory, owingnotably to the failure of numerous attempts at international negotiation led by powerful nations, but above all to politicians and a dominant media who remain indifferent to a nation that has been subjugated for decades.

This is why in 2012 a non-violent protest group named Youth Against Settlements (YAS) was formed, with the aim of ending the establishment and expansion of illegal Israeli colonies through non-violent protests and civil resistance. Read the rest of this entry »

Berta Cáceres : Activist to the last

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By Sylvia Revello, translated by Emily Milne

 Her battle cost her her life. On the 3rd of March, the Honduran environmental activist was murdered in her home in La Esperanza, in the north west of the country, under suspicious circumstances. Described as a “politically motivated crime committed by the government” the tragedy has provoked an international outcry. It demonstrates, if that were even necessary, just how tragically the power struggles between multinational companies and indigenous peoples can turn out. Known for speaking out against the harmful consequences posed to the indigenous Lenca people by the hydroelectric dam, Agua Zarca, the 42-year old activist was no stranger to threats and scare tactics. Now she has paid the price for her freedom of expression. While Amnesty International laments the “numerous flaws in the investigation”, the Honduran authorities maintain that her death was nothing more than a burglary gone wrong. Read the rest of this entry »

GIMUN 2016: The WHO committee proposes concrete solutions

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The GIMUN 2016 Annual Conference, held from March 7th to 11th at the Palais des Nations, in Geneva, gathered around 200 students for a model UN. In the past few days, we have had the honour of publishing reports on the six committees’ debates, brought to you by the journalists of the GIMUN Chronicles.

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By Rosalyne Reber, translated by Marie-Ambrym Thivoyon

After a week full of emotions, new experiences and knowledge sharing, GIMUN’s 17th Annual Conference ended with a very moving and impressive closing ceremony during which appreciation for the work carried out by the event’s organisers over the last few months was shown and their roles were explained. This conference, which took place in the impressive setting of the Palais des Nations in Geneva, was a great success. Read the rest of this entry »

Security Council: An eventful week for GIMUN’s enfant terrible!

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The GIMUN 2016 Annual Conference, held from March 7th to 11th at the Palais des Nations, in Geneva, gathered around 200 students for a model UN. In the next few days, we will have the honour of publishing reports on the six committees’ debates, brought to you by the journalists of the GIMUN Chronicles.

By Anaïs Anthoine-Milhomme, translated by John Ryan-Mills

 The week of debates in the Security Council was certainly problematic. Kicking off with a discussion of the principles and definition of cyberwarfare, the States were interrupted by a major crisis. The attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul, in Afghanistan, would lead to a series of disturbances within the Council. Debates were then centered on this crisis: how would the Council deal with such an important attack? How would they be able to help the hostages who still remained in the embassy? Read the rest of this entry »

Call for Journalists June 2015

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screen-shot-2014-03-02-at-2-26-28-pmAre you an aspiring writer or translator? Would you like to get more practice and publish your work in an established student journal? Are you interested in international news?

Join the team of  UNO You Know !?

Requirements for a writer:
– interest in international affairs and/or law
– availability to dedicate 10 hours per month to the blog

Please send a CV and a short cover letter accompanied by writing samples to blog@gimun.org before 30th June 2015. Applications will be evaluated on a rolling basis.

Land grabbing – NGOs giving the UN a push

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by Tuuli Orasmaa

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On 15th April, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) released a news brief celebrating a second multinational company’s, PepsiCo’s, decision to support international guidelines on sustainable land tenure governance. The first one, Coca-Cola Company, made the move in November 2013. But why is this news worth noting? First of all, this may be seen as an important step in the fight against the global “land grabbing” phenomenon and secondly, this shows the power civil society organizations may have in issues the United Nations is struggling with. Read the rest of this entry »

Migration – Winners and Losers

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by Larissa Spescha

taken from: http://www.emergingmarkets.org/Article/2844077/Africa-must-avoid-repeating-commodity-boom-mistakes.html
taken from: http://www.emergingmarkets.org/Article/2844077/Africa-must-avoid-repeating-commodity-boom-mistakes.html

Migration. Nowadays migration is a heavily discussed topic in the media. It has become even more since the Swiss have adopted the ‘Stop mass immigration’ initiative that calls for quotas for all foreign nationals, on 9th February 2014. This desire to limit the number of foreigners shows the up-to-dateness of ‘migration’.

But what exactly are the effects of migration? Are they rather beneficial or disadvantageous for a country? Sir Paul Collin, a professor from Oxford University, analyses the impact migration has on countries, in particular developing countries. He shared his point of view at the conference entitled ‘Migration – Winners and Losers’ which was organized by the Graduate Institute in Geneva (IHEID) on 29th  April.
Read the rest of this entry »

Sustainability, Equity and Growth – Change is the Key

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Palais de Nations, Geneva

by Alina Suvila

It seems like a never-ending discussion about sustainable development and climate change. But there is a very good reason for it: now is the time to act. Three notable personalities discussed various possibilities for action in a public conference named ”Sustainable Development on a Warming Planet?” on 24th April 2014 at the Palais de Nations, Geneva. Read the rest of this entry »

A Ladder to Damascus – A film review

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by Leandra Hildbrand and Larissa Spescha

“A ladder to Damascus” is a 2013 drama directed by the Syrian filmmaker Mohamed Malas. It was screened at the “International Oriental Film Festival of Geneva” which took place from 4th to 13th of April. Read the rest of this entry »

Feminist Fangirl: A talk by IR legend J Ann Tickner

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by Sarah Payne

taken from: http://www.american.edu/uploads/profiles/large/SIS%2520Tickner.jpg
taken from: http://www.american.edu/uploads/profiles/large/SIS%2520Tickner.jpg

High on many reading lists on issues of security and feminism, J Ann Tickner is a familiar name for any International Relations student. For this reason, I was really excited to see her deliver a guest lecture at the Graduate Institute Geneva on 14th April 2014, entitled “Dealing with Difference: Problems and Possibilities for Dialogue in International Relations”, and tackling concepts like discrimination and epistemology of discourse  -as problematic and diverse as feminism – all within the hour. Read the rest of this entry »

Zaatari: the biggest Syrian town in Jordan

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by Pauline Mettan, translated by Charlotte Grey

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-26908587
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-26908587

Demographic pressure has become too much for our country. Jordan has opened its doors to more than 560,000 Syrian refugees since the conflict began, with 70% being women and children. Within a year, refugees will be 40% of our population. 96% of our energy is imported. Water is scarce. Our budget deficit is sky high. How can we keep up this poor balancing act when wave upon wave of immigrants are draining our already rare resources? Read the rest of this entry »

7 Days in Kigali, and how genocide ripped through Rwanda

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By Yura Azevedo, translated by Lucy Cumming

On Monday 7th April, Rwanda paid tribute to the most extreme genocide in history – 800,000 deaths in less than one hundred days – and one of the bloodiest wars of the 20th century. A mere 20 years ago: the Rwandan Tutsi genocide. Read the rest of this entry »

France is alone in the Central African Republic

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By Juliette Darrousez and Julie Seemann-Ricard, translated by Charlotte Grey

From the very beginning, France has made international mobilisation in the Central African Republic a priority. In November 2013, Laurent Fabius, Minister for Foreign Affairs, announced that “France will be there” and “it will act so that the Central African Republic can hope again”. Operation Sangaris’ goal was to break the cycle of violence in the Central African Republic, and then give humanitarian aid to victims. The “anti-balakas” militia, created to defend the Séléka, have effectively lost sight of their initial goal and started targeting civilians. Read the rest of this entry »

Correa and his European campaign

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By Claire Gossart and Simon Rousseau, translated by Charlotte Grey

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On 6 November 2013 at the University of Paris, Ecuador president Rafael Correa delivered his views on resolving the European crisis, by drawing upon past Latin-American lessons.

The Latin America of the 1980s would have fallen victim to an imperialist plot, led by the United States, who were hoping to once again take control of the sub-continent through treacherous means. Following the 1970s crisis, the majority of Latin American countries were insolvent. They were denied international loans, but were also suffering from the sharp increase in interest rates from places such as the Federal Reserve in the United States. The IMF “kindly” offered aid by granting loans to pay off their debts, but while eventually imposing conditions as underhand as they were drastic. International institutions have hidden their economic ideology in science. Correa had a mission in going to France, and it was partly to enlighten ill-advised Europeans. At last, Latin America is the one giving advice. Read the rest of this entry »

No solutions to the machete in the Central African Republic

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by Simon Rousseau, translated by Charlotte Grey

Central African Republic support

The storm blowing across the Central African Republic is nothing new. Indeed, since its independence in 1960, the country has been in the grip of serious political and humanitarian crises which are hardly suitable conditions for sorting out the incredibly bad economy. The storm became a hurricane in March 2013 when Séléka rebels – predominantly Muslims – ousted President Bozizé, leading to a period of unprecedented violence. Christians, initially persecuted by militant ex-Séléka fighters, have seen Christian anti-balakas respond to the abuse with their own acts of violence. This has resulted in hostile attitudes towards predominantly Muslim Chadian Central Africans. Read the rest of this entry »