Jordan takes over the U.N. Security Council presidency on Wednesday, the first day of its two-year stint on a 15-nation body struggling to cope with conflicts in Syria, South Sudan, Central African Republic, Mali and elsewhere.
Turbulence in the Arab world and crisis in North Africa. The Middle East peace process on life support at best. Oil and food prices rising, causing global economic stresses and hardships. Mounting concerns about the sustainability of our growth. In the world’s dominant power, economic doldrums exacerbated by political gridlock; in Europe, policy confusion depressing growth. A competitor power rising, testing America’s weaknesses, probing for vulnerability.
The United States and Iran, having clinched a landmark interim deal suspending some aspects of Tehran's nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief, turned their attention this week to addressing the humanitarian crisis in Syria.
The United Nations Security Council has received the first report from chemical weapons inspectors inside Syria. The report details the country's cooperation with the initial effort to destroy its capacity to manufacture the weapons but despite progress on that front, the humanitarian crisis there shows no sign of improvement.
Saudi Arabia refused to accept the membership of the United Nations Security Council it won yesterday, citing issues including Syria’s civil war that it said show the world body is incapable of resolving conflicts.
Saudi Arabia took the extraordinary step Friday of refusing to take its seat on the U.N. Security Council -- despite pursuing the position for years. It's an unprecedented protest over the council's failure to take firmer action in Syria and Palestine. And it comes at a time of growing Saudi frustration with American-led policies across the Middle East.
Chosen as one of the most influential women in the world by Time magazine, Samantha Power, U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. undergoes a baptism by fire as she confronts the difficulties of Syrian diplomacy.