Category: Uncategorized

The Big O: Country Block Gains Support in UNDP

By EMILY C. SCHEPPEGRELL, Times of India

A block with an unusual acronym has gained popularity in the United Nations Development Programme throughout today’s debate. This block, including South Africa, China, Japan, Korea, Antigua Barbuda, the Russian Federation, and more is based upon the creation of a program called The Office for Responsible Governance in Health, Aid, Security, and Mitigation, or ORGAN for short. “ORGAN seeks a public, private, secure partnership towards both bridging a gap that is becoming very prominent between developed and developing countries,” a sponsor stated before the committee. ORGAN plans to work with organizations like the World Health Organization to create a system that is more inclusive and tolerant. ORGAN wishes to respect sovereignty of individual nations while also saving lives and furthering safety globally. “We are a sub-agency of the UNDP responsible for coordinating public, private health sector research,” another advocate explained.

ORGAN, if enacted, plans to submit a yearly report on the current state of health to administrators. Additionally, ORGAN is creating a pool in which voluntary nations would contribute money to a fund that would go towards alleviating medical emergencies. The nations in charge of contributing would be volunteers; no one would be required to donate to the fund. ORGAN looks to solve a variety of issues, including environmental regulation. ORGAN has specific ideas to look into carbon tax schemes and work to further environmental advancements. Another issue ORGAN covers is food and nutrition security. Participating nations encourage focusing on food supply chains to identify contaminated products and ensure health and safety in consumers.

Other than gaining support from delegates in the committee, ORGAN has also gained the tentative support of the International Red Cross non-governmental organization. Yusuf Bulbulia, representative of the Red Cross, stated, “We’ve decided to provide resources to signatories and help with transportation of medication.” These resources include on-the-ground work, like volunteers, products, and other resources depending on the specific pandemic in a certain area.

ORGAN competes with at least three other blocks in UNDP, like RISE (Responsibilites, Incentive, Support, and Empowerment), The Council, and D2D (Developed to Developing). Despite the competition, ORGAN has finagled a large, vocal support from the committee, perhaps because of the humorous acronym. The delegation from Korea stated, followed by chuckles in the room, “The only way we can solve this problem is by coming together.”

 

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BIG MERGE LEADED BY UNITED STATES, FRANCE AND UGANDA: TWO SIDES COLLIDE AT SOCHUM

BY SILVANA RODRIGUEZ, The Boston Globe 

During the fourth session of the Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee in the Harvard National Model United Nations two big blocks, the JPITE leaded by Uganda and the IGI block leaded by France and the United States are working on a merge of their proposals.

This would mean connecting two of the most powerful countries with another perspective from Uganda, the leadership shown by its delegates gives us hope that a fair resolution will come out.

The education aspect was clearly developed with a specific plan for each sector

“With private education we are looking at voucher systems and empowering students to choose their own schools to encourage the competence for the best lingual education. And in the public-sector we are getting sure that everyone gets a policy tailored to their own country, making sure we are taking the best solutions from what has worked in different countries and what could best suit them depending on their own situations.” declared the delegate from France.

The Boston Globe asked France about the minority integration index, but the delegate didn’t seem to recognize a proposal that has been put in their own draft resolution, it got the Boston Globe a feeling of powerful countries to not respecting nor taking as much into consideration the ideas that blocks with developing countries are creating.

On the standardization of languages, the new block is holding translators to an international standard, creating regional offices to encourage the best practices for translators and giving them a level of respect. Also the translations on the courts will be updated and improved because as said by the delegate of France “understanding your trial is one of the building blocks of being in a democracy.”

Anyway, the feeling we get of this merge is that the aspects seem really connected, with a special focus on education for public help and getting diverse points of view. With a precise regulation, it will be a prosperous work.

Transitioning from Oil-Based Economy to Alternative Energy

By: AMATUS-SABOOH WAHAB AKUMFI-AMEYAW, Dawn

“Alternative Energy is the future,” Oman emphasized in an interview.

Speaking with the delegation from Oman, the delegation says there’s a plan and it is the “I CARE PLAN.” In this plan, Oman will hopefully help solve the 3 problems facing the League of Arab Nations, which are Syrian refugees, an Indian-dominated labor force, and unemployment.

Oman says 70% of its energy comes from oil that and the nation intends to reduce this figure.

Oman says in the “I CARE PLAN,” there are tax cuts for companies and investors that will provide more alternative energy solutions such as solar energy for cars and adds that like the country welcomes more ideas since it has already started this in the country’s capital.

“We depend a lot on oil,” the delegation from Senegal said in an interview, mentioning that is is looking at a more long-term energy solution rather than continue its dependence on oil. Senegal adds that it can not move entirely off of oil but hopefully in some decades, it will be more than
halfway away from oil and moving towards renewable energy.

The Arab world mainly lives on oil. It is indeed difficult for the Arab world to take the step to making the world safer and saving our climate. The Arab world is on the fence with whether to look at renewable energy or stay on oil.

Press Conference at the World Health Organization

By Justin Doane (Reuters) 

BOSTON, Mass. (Reuters) – During the World Health Organization’s annual meeting in Boston, a press conference was held in order to debate the topic of climate change and possible solutions.

(To Russia) We have asked throughout the conference whether you would be willing to work with NGOs and we would like to know where this would be happening and what would be the limits you would be willing to work this to?

 

“As Russia we are looking to work with more NGOs as we get into a ore connected world. Currently, we aren’t very involved with NGOs but we would like to be in the future.”

 

We would like to know how the governments of your country will be taken into consideration, and the protections you could be placing moving forward when it comes to natural disasters.

 

“India is one of the most affected countries by climate change. The threat is actually very severe, because we have so many in our population. We have unveiled NAPCC, the National Action Plan on Climate Change.”

 

“Bangladesh is a country just like India that gets heavily damaged by the monsoons annually to the point that thousands of lives are being lost, and millions more displaced. What Bangladesh really wants out of this is for resolutions to involve immediate action plans to help the people who are affected instead of stranding them to fend for themselves and building poorly built structures that then get wiped out the next year.”

 

(To Kenya) Is water a public service that the people have a right to receive from their government, and if that’s true then why are people living in unrecognized communities disproportionally disadvantaged in regards to water access?

 

“Safe drinking water is a right for every single person and for the children of their life, so in countries like, for example, Kenya, we believe that safe drinking water is substantial for people’s life because it avoids communicable diseases or gastrointestinal diseases that really damages people’s lives.”

 

How will more developed countries who usually emit more greenhouse gases help less developed countries who are more vulnerable?

 

“For the delegation of Spain it’s very important to take into consideration that we at the WHO are not the only institution inside the United Nations that have tackled climate issues, so if we take into consideration the UNFCCC and treaties such as the Paris Agreement, we know that the way we are tackling emissions right now is through nationally determined contributions.”

Investigative Report: The Land Speaks Arabic  

By: ANDREA MORANTE (The New York Times) and SILVANA RODRIGUEZ (The Boston Globe)

At the Social Humanitarian and Cultural Committee (SOCHUM), the Israel delegations sings to the old song of “the land speaks Arabic.” The Press Conference directed by HNMUN 2018 Press Corps team during the Fourth Committee Session left The New York Times and The Boston Globe with the mission to further investigate about the inconsistent policy that the Delegation of the State of Israel has shown between its international and national policy in regards to language minorities.

 

According to The Legal Center for Minority Rights Adalah (LCMRA), in november 2016 an unjustified increase in Hebrew-language proficiency test scores that attempted to the Arab school candidates, portrayed a clear discrimination and harm to the “equal” status between Hebrew and Arabic language in the State of Israel. This increase of proficiency shed critique by the LCMRA due to the implications that it would have on the Arab-speaking minorities during their applications for technician studies in the future.

 

Furthermore, the Hebrew language was banned at hospitals by the Israeli government in 2015 during the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Additionally, the separation of schools for palestinians and Jews or the total lack of arabic dictated courses at israeli universities.

 

These separatist actions in the course of Israel’s history leaved a notorious gap of information that left The New York Times and The Boston Globe on the search of explanation for the open policies that the Israeli delegation had placed in regards to linguistic minorities.

 

During the Press Conference at SOCHUM, The Boston Globe mentioned the LCMRA’s points on the discriminatory actions of the Israeli Government. Contrasting current proposals of the Israeli Delegation in SOCHUM and the actual reality of what the Israel Government has done through its legislations and reforms.

 

The Boston Globe placed the Delegation of Israel in a “fight or flight” situation when asked the implications that its actions regarding the statements made by the RMCA and the banning of the Hebrew language in Israeli hospitals.

 

According to the Delegation of Israel “the drastic measure was made to ensure that there was no danger happening in the hospitals. A lot of danger and terror happened in these facilities and, so in order to avoid these violent attack – as not everyone in Israel speaks the Arabic language- we took a measure to ensure that no harm was done to hospital patients.”

 

The Delegation of Israel has placed attention to the necessity of establishing educational systems that can help cooperate towards the enhancement of “national unity”. Stressing the principles of sovereignty and the respect of cultural values, Israel has mentioned the respect to its educational curriculum.  

Having received a response that was avoidant on the issue of prohibitions of the practice of the Arabic language, The New York Times and The Boston Globe interviewed Israel once again. This time mentioning one of the most recent news that have appeared in the media: “The Café, Café” scandal. where employees deciding to speak arabic were recommended to quit.

 

The brief segment of our news report covers the outcome of the interview:

Delegate of Israel giving declarations during an interview with The Boston Globe and The New York Times

 

Question: With examples as those, is it truly possible that Israel seeks to improve linguistic minority rights?

 

Answer: Basically, when it comes to medicine, hospital, saving a live you can’t just risk it if there is a language barrier, “something that can’t happen and it is important to avoid that there is these language barrier in which you can’t really help the patient because you can’t really understand what they are saying and because the  majority of people who work as staff  speak in hebrew, it is to ensure that we are being efficient. But also because at that time (2014) we were trying to avoid a lot of terrorist attacks, planting bombs or causing terror in the hospitals. And I know it sound kind of harsh but it was a way for us to ensure that we knew what was happening and there weren’t any suspicious activities in the hospitals.

 

Question: Taking into consideration another case, in a cafeteria in Israel where the employees were shutted up because they spoke in arabic to arab customers, and the legal system did nothing to protect those rights in 2016, what can you say about it?

 

Answer: This is obviously something that wasn’t in our control ,we don’t employ these people. We have never said this was right or that it is okay to happen, it is a private company. The government can’t have that much interaction, we can’t just shut it out because there is a lot of interaction between the public and the private sector.

This is 2018 and we are trying to bring more diversity, so we don’t support the idea of not speaking a certain language. We are trying to reduce the stigma that surrounds the arab israeli conflict.

 

Although the interview with the Delegation of The State of Israel provided further details of the context and past events of its government, inconsistency remains as a gap between actions and words. Israel has placed hopes on the SOCHUM committee for an improvement on its policies towards linguistic minorities. However, critique should be raised to this stance, as it is the set of realistic goals that achieves more when compared to optimistic hopes.

 

Responding to the Financial Times: “America First” Isn’t the Problem—It’s Deception

BY KALI CROKE (FOX News)

Sidestepping commentary on the unoriginality of the criticism, a recent editorial released by The Financial Times claimed that the United States’ “America First” policy would “delay” efforts to combat climate change and its effects. While the article claimed that we had obliterated any sense of solidarity between the nations of the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD), what it forgot to mention was why these resolutions dismantle when put into effect.

When the developing world indiscriminately signs its name to various climate accords and pledges to improve the health and wellbeing of their populations, the applause from the international community is deafening. These empty promises are all but equivalated with forgiveness. The reality is that behind these de facto international pardons lies something much more sinister and much less publicized.

Across the Global South, massive communities populate the outskirts of major cities in urban slums with varying levels of recognition by their governments. However, one thing is certain: their access to basic health services and clean water are poor to nonexistent thanks to their classification. So while certain news organizations are quick to point fingers at the United States for understanding economic diversity, what about the discrimination of impoverished populations in the slums of India or favelas of Brazil?

Perhaps what is truly delaying progress in the OECD is the fact that while these “Waste Trade and Systems” are passed, the government of India is actively denying its non-notified (unrecognized) communities with piped water, electricity, and—what do you know!—waste systems.

Now, I know what you’re going to say. “But that’s why we are drafting these initiatives in the first place!” Sorry to burst your impenetrable financial bubble (which I’m sure you know always happens eventually), but even after India’s years of slum improvement schemes, these unincorporated territories receive notably less funding from government assistance.

Rather than framing this issue as an issue of “elephants” and “tit-for-tats”, maybe we should focus more on how impossible it is to convince these governments to supply public services so long as it means legitimating settlements they have historically deemed illegal. This is especially true when water rights are contingent on property rights.

Turn your attention away from sensationalized accusations and truly evaluate the efficacy of your solutions. Where you’re putting the pipes of your chlorinated water, slum-dwellers are illegalling tapping into the system and risking cross-contamination. Where you’re establishing access to clean water as a universal right, impoverished communities are forced to pay twice as much from private vendors because they can’t rely on the government.

And where you’re wasting breath on throwing the United States under the bus for the umpteenth time, we continue to recognize the importance of accountability for all you’ve put your blind faith in.

Oil and the Middle East

By: AMATUS-SABOOH WAHAB AKUMFI-AMEYAW, Dawn

One regional body, four different position papers.

Iraq is a signatory to “Protect, Promote and Adapt for Economic Supremacy.” Iraq sought signatories to regulate and stabilize oil prices. The signatories believe that protecting and securing stability in the oil prices for the members of the League will boost their economies.

The signatories added that the oil-producing countries in the Arab League will determine the price for members outside the League and this would allow members to dictate the pace, rates, and prices of oil around the world.

The position paper that got the attention of most delegations was iCARE and has about 7 signatories, including Oman and Kuwait.

iCARE stands for:
i- Infrastructure; C- Complexity, A- Accountability, R- Resilience, E- Education, E- Employment, E- Engagement.

The signatories to iCARE gave a summarized overview saying it would tackle the problems facing members of the League such us unemployment and increasing number of Syrian refugees. They also took time to elaborate on the triple E meaning; Education, Employment, Engagement.

Arab Vision 2030 was also tactically debated. Signatories to this position paper managed to get others to join them after their extensive elaboration on how the Arab world would be better off utilizing other forms of energy which are cleaner and safer. Such as solar. Qatar lead the signatories in pushing the agenda.