The United Nations Security Council met on February 7, 2016, to discuss North Korea's missile launch and previous nuclear test. U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power, Japanese Ambassador Motohide Yoshikawa, and South Korean Ambassador Oh Joon discussed the Security Council's response.
On January 29, 2016, Canadian Foreign Minister Stephane Dion hosted U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Mexican Foreign Secretary Claudia Ruiz Massieua. The ministers discussed how the three countries can cooperate in the areas of energy and environment, combatting violent extremism, and reducing organized crime and human and drug trafficking. They also discussed the North American Leaders’ Summit scheduled for spring 2016.
Secretary of State John Kerry spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos on January 22, 2016, discussing the United States' global commitments in trade, economic development, foreign relations, and conflict resolution. He specifically mentioned the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action with Iran, the Paris climate agreement, and the Trans Pacific Partnership.
Secretary of State John Kerry spoke at the National Defense University about the Obama administration's foreign policy agenda. The main focus of his speech included strategy for defeating the self-proclaimed Islamic State, addressing the humanitarian crisis in Syria, integrating screened refugees, and beginning implementation of several agreements, including the Iran nuclear deal (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action), the Paris climate change agreement, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
The State of the Union is a speech given annually by the president to Congress, in which the president outlines the current condition of the United States and national priorities for the coming year, based on the U.S. Constitution, Article Two, Section Three. President Obama has delivered his State of the Union Address speeches on January 27, 2010, January 25, 2011, January 24, 2012, February 12, 2013, January 28, 2014, January 20, 2015, and January 12, 2016.
The governments of Japan and South Korea discussed the trafficking of South Korean sex slaves (known as "comfort women") in Japan during World War II. Japan agreed to provide reparations to surviviors which the government of South Korea would distribute; South Korea agreed to review the placement of a memorial statue dedicated to comfort women, which is near the Japanese Embassy in Seoul.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative reports annually to Congress on China's compliance with its World Trade Organization (WTO) obligations, based on China's policies and practices. The first report in 2004 was released exactly three years after China’s accession to the WTO.
The United Nations Security Council approved this resolution on December 18, 2015. The document provides a timeline for a ceasefire and a Syrian-led political transition. It also discusses how the UN will monitor political negotiations, provide humanitarian assistance, and fight terrorist groups in the region.
The second World Internet Conference (WIC) was held in Wuzhen, China, from December 16-18, 2015. The theme for the conference was "An Interconnected World Shared and Governed by All: Building a Community of Common Future in Cyberspace" and conference leaders proposed the Wuzhen Initiative as a continuation of the work of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS).
UN General Assembly Resolution 56/183 in December 2001 endorsed the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), which encourages global discussions on how to benefit from the digital revolution while addressing the digital divide. The International Telecommunication Union hosted two phases in Geneva from December 10 to 12, 2003, and in Tunis from November 16 to 18, 2005. From February 25 to 27, 2013, WSIS participants met in Paris to evaluate progress and goals. In December 2015, the UN produced a draft resolution on the outcome of the WSIS from the past ten years and renewed the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) for another ten years.
World Trade Organization (WTO) particpants created the the Information Technology Agreement (ITA) in December 1996, which eliminated tariffs on specific technology product exports. From 2012 to 2015, WTO participants negotiated how to expand the ITA to cover additional technologies.
This report was released on December 17, 2015. The report reviews how the United Nations responded to allegations of peacekeepers sexually abusing children in the Central African Republic in the spring of 2014.
Global leaders including the United States participated in the Paris Climate Change Conference (also called Conference of the Parties 21, or COP21), which took place November 30 to December 11, 2015. They extended negotiations one day and 195 nations adopted the Paris Agreement (FCCC/CP/2015/L.9/Rev.1). According to the UN's press release, the agreement's "main aim is to keep a global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius and to drive efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels."
During November 14-22, 2015, President Barack Obama traveled to Turkey for the G20 summit, to the Phillipines for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting, and to Malaysia for the East Asian and Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summits. After the summits, the White House released a fact sheet about the Obama Administration's rebalance or pivot to Asia.
G20 country leaders met in Antalya, Turkey from November 15-16 2015. The 2015 agenda for the global economy included "Strengthening the Global Recovery and Lifting Potential"; "Enhancing Resilience"; and "Buttressing Sustainability."
India now matters to U.S. interests in virtually every dimension. This Independent Task Force report assesses the current situation in India and the U.S.-India relationship, and suggests a new model for partnership with a rising India.
Rates of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and other noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in low- and middle-income countries are increasing faster than in wealthier countries. The report outlines a plan for collective action on this growing epidemic.
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 »
The Summer 2016 issue of CFR's member newsletter, the Chronicle, is a guide to CFR's most important news since July 2016, and includes announcements about new programs, partnerships, fellows, meetings, publications, and members. Read it now.
Now Available: Foreign Policy Begins at Home
The biggest threat to America's security and prosperity comes not from abroad but from within, writes CFR President Richard N. Haass in his provocative new book. More