UN Chronicle

A news reference publication published by the United Nations. Reports on UN actions and events as it addresses world issues.

Articles from Vol. 31, No. 3, September

A Meaningful Reminder to Help Needy Children
A child's expression of gratitude in post-war ravaged Europe launched a multi-million-dollar Programme that has become worldwide expression of hoep for children. In 1949, seven-year-old Jitka Samkova sent a hand-painted thank-you note to the UN...
Barbados Conference Addresses Problems of Small Islands
In an effort to confront the serious economic and environmental problems of small islands--rising sea levels, vulnerability to storms and droughts, loss of fragile reefs and rain forests, coastal pollution, shortages of fresh water and import dependency--representatives...
Cairo Agreement a Major Step towards Self-Government
United Nations Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali has called the 4 May Cairo agreement between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) on Palestinian self-rule in Gaza and Jericho a "first and major step" in implementing the Declaration...
Call Made for Third UN Space Conference
A third UN conference on the exploration and peaceful uses of outer space (UNISPACE III) could be convened in the near future. So agreed the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space at its thirty-seventh session (6-16 June, Vienna). In that...
Choices and Responsibilities: Finding the Balance
In 1994, world population will grow by a record 91 million, to more than 5.6 billion people. Some 950 million will be added during this decade alone, nearly all in developing countries. Indeed, while it took 123 years for the world population to increase...
Commission Considers Preliminary Elements of Guidelines on Arms Transfers
Preliminary elements of guidelines for international arms transfers were considered by the Disarmament Commission at its 1994 session (18 April-9 May, New York). Although the commission adopted a final report (A/49/42) for the General Assembly--incorporating...
Committee Adopts Guidelines for HABITAT II Action Plan
The Preparatory Committee for the UN Conference on Human Settlements (HABITAT II) drew up guidelines for a draft global plan of action at its first substantive session (11-2 2 April, Geneva). The plan of action, which is to be adopted by HABITAT...
Conversations in a Mansion: Designing the UN
Using a gavel made of wood from the USS Constitution, the American warship of 1797 known as "Old Ironsides", United States Secretary of State Cordell Hull rapped the inaugural meeting of the Dumbarton Oaks Conversations to order. The high-level civilian...
Desertification Convention Adopted
In a concerted effort to help over 900 million people around the world fight the life and death battle against the degradation of their fragile drylands--the process known as desertification--more than 100 Governments concluded negotiations on 18 June...
Elections Take Place in Atmosphere of 'Freedom, Competitiveness, Security.' (El Salvador)(includes Related Article)
In welcoming the fact that both the first and second rounds of the elections in El Salvador had taken place under "appropriate conditions in terms of freedom, competitiveness and security", the Security Council on 26 May extended the mandate of the UN...
Empowering Women: An Essential Objective
The empowerment of women--a basic human rights objective--is key to achieving development and population goals. Consequently, the International Conference on Population and Development aims to ensure that all population and development policies emphasize...
End to 'All-Out War' Reported in Yemeni Conflict
An "all-out war in the Yemeni crisis"--which had erupted in the beginning of May between northern forces loyal to President Ali Abdallah Saleh of Yemen and southern forces supporting Vice-President Ali Al-Bidh-seemed to have "come to an end", Secretary-General...
General Elections Set for September May Be Delayed
A team of international experts visited Liberia from 26 May to 4 June for consultations on a timetable for presidential and general elections scheduled for 7 September. Unless the Liberian National Transitional Government, the Elections Commission...
Mandate Ends, UN Presence Diminishes
The mandate of the United Nations Military Liaison Team in Cambodia, set up in November 1993 for a single six-month period under Security Council resolution 880 (1993), expired on 15 May 1994. In a final report (S/1994/645) dated 31 May, the Secretary-General...
Massacres, 'Mindless Violence and Carnage' Rage in Rwanda
The Security Council continued to deal with what it called a situation of "mindless violence and carnage" in Rwanda, in the face of continued fighting, widespread massacres of civilians and a deteriorating humanitarian situation. On 21 April, the...
Nearly Half a Million Liters of Chemical Warfare Agents Destroyed in Two-Year Operation
The UN Special Commission on Iraqi disarmament, set up under Security Council resolution 687 (1991) concerning the disposal of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, reported that it had completed in June an important part of its mandate--the elimination...
New Commission Experiences 'Eventful' First Year
Culminating its first year of work, the UN Commission on Sustainable Development adopted 14 decisions on sectoral and cross-sectoral issues pertaining to development and the environment, including freshwater, toxic chemicals, hazardous and radioactive...
Palau Compact Implementation Urged
In asking the United States, in consultation with the Government of Palau, to agree on a date "on or about 1 October 1994" for the full entry into force of the Compact of Free Association, the Trusteeship Council on 25 May suspended its sixty-first...
Peace-Keeping Guidelines Set out by Security Council
A threat to international peace and security, a clear political goal reflected in a precise mandate, a cease-fire between parties to a conflict with a view to reaching a political solution--those were among the factors to be considered when establishing...
Peacemaking Efforts 'Must Continue' despite Persistent Problems
To evaluate UN activities in that regard, a "comprehensive approach" was needed, Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali told the press at Headquarter's on 25 May. "Bosnia is only one of the elements. You also have Krajina, between Croatia and Serbia;...
Reproductive Rights, Family Planning: A Cornerstone of Control
Over the past three decades, the increasing availability of safer methods of modern contraception has permitted greater individual choice in matters of reproduction throughout much of the world, resulting in improved health for mothers and children,...
Sanctions Expanded to Secure Compliance with 1993 Agreement
The sanctions regime against Haiti was expanded by the Security Council on 6 May to include a comprehensive commercial embargo--effective 21 May--aimed at bringing about compliance by the Haitian military authorities with the Island Agreement. In...
Secretary-General's Blueprint for Action Provokes Widespread Debate
Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali's highly anticipated "Agenda for Development" was released on 2 5 May, immediately precipitating widespread debate in UN quarters and beyond. His blueprint for action on a whole array of economic and social issues...
Security Council Renews Force Mandate
The Security Council extended the mandate of the UN Peace-keeping Force in Cyprus I (UNFICYP) until 31 December 1994. The action came on 15 June, two weeks after the Secretary-General reported that "regrettably" his hopes had been dashed on the...
Security Council Threatens Further Sanctions If Lusaka Talks Fail
The Security Council on 30 June extended the mandate of the UN Angola Verification Mission (UNAVEM II) until 30 September 1994 and declared its readiness to impose additional sanctions to the existing oil and arms embargo against the National Union...
Seeking a New Order through Violence?
History had moved on, Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghaii told the Academy of Sciences in Belarus on 6 April, while on an official visit to that country. "Peoples and nations are seeking, too often with violence, to reconnect with their interrupted...
South Africa Rejoins the World Community; Nelson Mandela Elected President
Today, we have been privileged to witness a turning-point in the history of a nation. Today, South Africa regains its rightful place in Africa, in the United Nations and in the family of nations", Secretary-general Boutros Boutros-Ghali said in congratulating...
Special Panel of Experts Seeks New Collective Vision of Development
Timed to complement the Secretary-General's policy initiative--"An Agenda for Development"--and to help realize the collective vision of development it contained, the World Hearings on Development, organized by General Assembly President Samuel Insanally...
Strengthening the UN Message
The power of information and its pivotal role in the world today--both as an instrument of social, cultural, political and economic changes and as an instrument of peace, democracy and development--were the focus of deliberations of the UN Committee...
Support for October 1994 Elections Asked; ONUMOZ Mandate Renewed
Looking ahead to elections scheduled for october 1994, the Security Council on 5 May renewed the mandate of the United Nations Operation in Mozambique (ONUMOZ) for a final period until 15 November 1994. ONUMOZ was established on 16 December 1992 to...
The 38th Floor
A framework for the future . . . Today, more than ever, we need to think carefully about the future evolution of the international system. At a time of transition, every decision taken could affect the course of world events. The question is: "transition...
The UN and Apartheid: A Chronology
Apartheid--an Afrikaans word meaning separateness--was the State system of institutionalized racial segregation and discrimination adopted by the South African Government in 1948 as an official policy until early 1990, when the Government committed...
Troublesome Trends: Population Growth, Distribution, Migration
At the same time that world population growth has reached an all-time high, population distribution within countries is increasingly being altered by changing demographics and rural-urban migration. The number of cross-border migrants and refugees...
UNOSOM II Mandate Renewed, Humanitarian Aspect Stressed
The mandate of the United Nations Operation in Somalia (UNOSOM II) was renewed by the Security Council until 30 September, subject to a review no later than 29 July, after which the Council might consider other options regarding its mandate and future...
UN Political Presence to Be Re-Established
A UN political presence will be re-established in Afghanistan --provisionally located in lalalabad "until security conditions permit a permanent return to Kabul"--it was announced on 27 June. UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali took that decision...
World Conference Adopts Yokohama Strategy for Natural Disasters
Natural disasters continue to strike and increase in magnitude, complexity, frequency and economic impact. At the same time, awareness of the process and potential benefits of disaster reduction is still confined to specialized circles, and has not...