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The sun sets on a deep-sea mining vessel
The sun sets on a deep-sea mining vessel

Race to the Bottom: Deep Sea Mining Is the Next Frontier

The untapped trove of metals on the ocean floor might be the key to a greener future—or an environmental catastrophe.

Burqa-clad women wait in line for food.
Burqa-clad women wait in line for food.

The U.N. Knows Afghanistan Is Messed Up. But It’s Keeping Mum.

An internal United Nations report details escalating Taliban violations of human rights—and little U.N. leverage.

Afghan Ambassador Nasir Andisha attends a special session of the United Nations Human Rights Council on Afghanistan in Geneva on Aug. 24, 2021.
Afghan Ambassador Nasir Andisha attends a special session of the United Nations Human Rights Council on Afghanistan in Geneva on Aug. 24, 2021.

U.S. Weighs Waiving Taliban Travel Ban (Again)

Western engagement with the militant group appears to be on its last legs.

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet leaves after she addressed the press on the opening day of the 50th session of the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva on June 13.
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet leaves after she addressed the press on the opening day of the 50th session of the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva on June 13.

Michelle Bachelet’s Failed Xinjiang Trip Has Tainted Her Whole Legacy

The U.N. human rights commissioner ended up whitewashing China’s atrocities.

Electricity workers in a boat check solar panels at a photovoltaic power station built in a fishpond in Haian, China, on July 19, 2021.
Electricity workers in a boat check solar panels at a photovoltaic power station built in a fishpond in Haian, China, on July 19, 2021.

Russia’s War Is the End of Climate Policy as We Know It

Ironically, geopolitical strife and energy scarcity will do more for the climate than decades of ardent policies.

Bill Gates
Bill Gates

Bill Gates’s Pandemic Prevention Plan Has a China-Sized Blind Spot

In his new book, the billionaire philanthropist focuses on technical solutions but ignores politics.

U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres visits Ukraine after Russian invasion
U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres visits Ukraine after Russian invasion

The Reluctant Peacemaker

Criticized for inaction in Ukraine, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres wades into diplomatic hellscape with little prospect of halting Russian invasion.

Displaced Yemenis receive food aid and supplies
Displaced Yemenis receive food aid and supplies

Who’s to Blame for the Global Hunger Crisis?

Moscow and Washington battle at the U.N. to assign responsibility for a looming food crisis that threatens millions with starvation.

A black and white image shows men and women seated around a U-shaped conference table.
A black and white image shows men and women seated around a U-shaped conference table.

Why the World Isn’t Really United Against Russia

Global institutions have long relegated much of the world to second-class status.

Russian ambassador Vassily Nebenzia speaks at the United Nations.
Russian ambassador Vassily Nebenzia speaks at the United Nations.

Moscow Strikes Back at Countries That Cross It

Russia seeks diplomatic payback at the United Nations and other forums against countries that have denounced its invasion of Ukraine.

A man sits near a portrait of Russian President Vladimir Putin during a demonstration in Bamako, Mali, on Feb. 19 celebrating France’s announcement that it will withdraw its troops from the country.
A man sits near a portrait of Russian President Vladimir Putin during a demonstration in Bamako, Mali, on Feb. 19 celebrating France’s announcement that it will withdraw its troops from the country.

Russia Flounders in Ukraine but Doubles Down in Mali

Russian mercenaries fill Mali vacuum as European powers pursue an exit.

A U.N. General Assembly resolution is passed.
A U.N. General Assembly resolution is passed.

Kicking Russia Out of the U.N. Human Rights Council Isn’t Enough

Massive reform is needed for the United Nations to retain credibility.

Gennady Kuzmin addresses the U.N. General Assembly.
Gennady Kuzmin addresses the U.N. General Assembly.

U.N. Kicks Russia Off Human Rights Council

In one way at least, so far, Vladimir Putin’s Russia has joined Muammar al-Qaddafi’s Libya.

The United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva
The United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva

Russia to U.N. Members: You’re With Us or Against Us

Moscow will interpret a failure to vote against its ouster from the Human Rights Council as a show of support for the U.S.

An Iranian flag flies next to a ground-to-ground Sejjil missile at an undisclosed location in Iran.
An Iranian flag flies next to a ground-to-ground Sejjil missile at an undisclosed location in Iran.

The Little Iran Nuclear Deal That Couldn’t

A revived nuclear pact could benefit Washington and Tehran but is proving a hard sell.

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at the 69th United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York City on Sept. 24, 2014.
U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at the 69th United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York City on Sept. 24, 2014.

Putin’s War Is an Existential Crisis for the United Nations

It needs to be replaced by an organization where one nation cannot escape accountability because it is in a special class.

Peace activists pose with mock nuclear missiles in Berlin.
Peace activists pose with mock nuclear missiles in Berlin.

The West Is With Ukraine. The Rest, Not So Much.

Africa and Asia’s long-standing ties to Russia and resentments against Washington keep them on the fence—for now.

Russian President Vladimir Putin at press conference a joint press conference with German Chancellor at the Kremlin in Moscow, on February 15, 2022. (Photo by Mikhail Klimentyev/ Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images)
Russian President Vladimir Putin at press conference a joint press conference with German Chancellor at the Kremlin in Moscow, on February 15, 2022. (Photo by Mikhail Klimentyev/ Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images)

Prosecuting Putin

Bringing the Russian president to trial will be a challenge. But war crimes lawyers are raring to go.

World Food Program Executive Director David Beasley at the U.N. Office in Geneva.
World Food Program Executive Director David Beasley at the U.N. Office in Geneva.

WFP Women Fault Food Agency’s Boys’ Club

Hundreds of employees at the World Food Program protest the dominant role of men in responding to world’s humanitarian emergencies.

World Food Program Chief David Beasley
World Food Program Chief David Beasley

U.N. to Keep Beasley at WFP as Food Crises Roil the World

The head of the United Nations’ top food agency will get a job extension now that Russia’s invasion has put food security at risk for millions.

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