The UN published this document on December 23, 2013, and a program of activities followed on November 18, 2014. The International Decade for People of African Descent began January 1, 2015 and ends on December 31, 2024, with the theme "People of African descent: recognition, justice and development." This program builds on the work of the World Conference against Racism and builds upon the UN's other initiatives to acknowledge victims of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade.
President Obama and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi of Burma met on November 14, 2014, in Daw Suu's home. They answered questions about Burmese elections set to take place in 2015, press freedom, and expectations for democractic transition and rule of law and human rights in the country, particuarly concerning the Rohingya, a Muslim ethnic minority in Myanmar.
On September 22-23, 2014, the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples convened and made recommendations to the UN for implementation in protecting the human rights and land rights of indigenous peoples.
On August 20, 2014, U.S. Department of the Interior Secretary Jewell issued an order regarding the department's responsibilities toward Native American tribes, including "supporting tribal sovereignty and self-determination; protecting tribal lands and resources; building partnerships; practicing responsiveness and timeliness; and seeking legal advice to ensure compliance with the trust responsibility." Secretarial Order 3335 is part of the Indian Trust Settlement, also known as the Cobell Settlement, which relates toa dispute about use of funds held in trust by the federal government for leasing Indian land for commercial uses.
On April 17, 2014, Russia's Channel One in Russia hosted a question-and-answer session with Russian President Vladimir Putin, called Direct Line with Vladimir Putin. Russians asked questions primarily about Russia annexing Crimea from Ukraine.
In the U.S. foreign policy and national security communities there is a severe underrepresentation of women, as well as minorities, non-Americans, younger analysts and scholars, and others, due in large part to the gatekeepers of institutions and media, argues Micah Zenko. He provides four factors to keep in mind when determining the causes of and identifying solutions to this problem.
"Heavy-handed policies are responsible for the upsurge in tensions, not jihadism or terrorism, and this is creating a vicious cycle. Without a fundamental change in policies toward Xinjiang and other minority areas such as Tibet and Inner Mongolia, Beijing's quest for "stability" is self-defeating."
President Barack Obama gave these remarks on August 28, 2013, at the Lincoln Memorial, marking the fiftieth anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech at the first March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
Following President Barack Obama's remarks on the Trayvon Martin case, Micah Zenko highlights the inconsistency in Obama's policies towards justice. Although the president has stated in reference to the case that it is wrong to profile individuals based on their "appearance, associations, or statistical propensity to violence," and the use of lethal force cannot be justified as self-defense unless there is reasonable grounds to fear imminent harm, those are the exact foundational principles of U.S. signature strikes.
"Left unchecked, rising ethnic hatred and increasing attacks could push the country into a terrible period of ethnic cleansing," writes Joshua Kurlantzick about the continuing ethnic violence against Muslims in Myanmar.
Representatives of indigenous peoples and nations met on June 10-12, 2013, in the Sami people's traditional territories in Alta, Norway. The representatives agreed on four themes regarding the protection of indigenous peoples' rights and of their lands. They discussed these themes in depth at the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples on September 22-23, 2014, and made recommendations to the UN for prioritization and implementation.
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2015 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass. Read and download »