Wednesday, 21 September 2016

SumTips: 5 Countries on Censorship Watch, According to Ban Ki-moon

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Yesterday, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reported on the United Nation's annual progress at the 71st General Assembly meeting. Of note, he mentioned 5 countries currently impacted by failed governance and armed conflict:
  • In today’s world, the conflict in Syria is taking the greatest number of lives and sowing the widest instability. There is no military solution. Many groups have killed many innocents – but none more so than the Government of Syria, which continues to barrel bomb neighborhoods and systematically torture thousands of detainees. Powerful patrons that keep feeding the war machine also have blood on their hands.
  • One year ago, Palestine proudly raised its flag at UN Headquarters. Yet the prospects for a two-state solution are being lowered by the day. All the while, the occupation grinds into its 50th year.
  • On the Korean Peninsula, the fifth nuclear test by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea has again threatened regional and international security. Meanwhile, the people’s suffering and plight are worsening. 
  • In Ukraine, the violence has caused an internal upheaval, renewed tensions across Europe and rekindled geopolitical rivalries.
  • In South Sudan, leaders have also betrayed their people.

Secretary-General Ban continued on to highlight the fact that these countries are merely representative of a larger problem:
  • Indeed, in too many places, we see leaders rewriting constitutions, manipulating elections and taking other desperate steps to cling to power. Leaders must understand that holding office is a trust, granted by the people, not personal property.

His solution?
  • My message to all is clear: serve your people. Do not subvert democracy; do not pilfer your country’s resources; do not imprison and torture your critics.

SumRando simultaneously applauds the Secretary-General’s message and acknowledges that in countries such as Syria, Palestine, North Korea, Ukraine and South Sudan—as well as in much of the rest of the world—his words will simply go unheeded.

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