UN General Assembly: Who is attending, and what’s on the agenda? | United Nations News

World leaders will collect this week in New York to deal with the 77th session of the United Nations Basic Meeting (UNGA).

The conflict in Ukraine, local weather change and nuclear disarmament are prone to dominate speeches and discussions through the annual gathering that begins on Tuesday on the UN headquarters.

The theme for this 12 months’s UNGA is, “A watershed second: transformative options to interlocking challenges”.

Based on the UN, it “stems from the popularity that the world is at a essential second … attributable to complicated and interconnected crises”.

UN Secretary-Basic Antonio Guterres stated the gathering was taking place “at a time of nice peril”, with the world “blighted by conflict, battered by local weather chaos, scarred by hate, and shamed by poverty, starvation, and inequality”.

Audio system on Tuesday will embrace Brazilian President Jair Bolsanaro, United States President Joe Biden and Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.

Here’s what you have to know:

Who will probably be attending?

Each UN member is invited to ship a delegation to the UNGA – probably the most consultant physique of the UN system. Every member state is allowed an equal vote when deciding on resolutions.

This 12 months’s session will happen in particular person for the primary time since COVID-19 was declared a pandemic in March 2020. For the previous two years, heads of state had been allowed to submit video statements attributable to pandemic restrictions.

The listing of audio system contains some notable absentees, with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese language President Xi Jinping amongst those that will ship their overseas ministers to the UNGA.

President of the Lebanon Michel Aoun delivers a pre-recorded speech at the 76th Session of the U.N. General Assembly at United Nations headquarters in New York, on Friday, Sept. 24, 2021.
A pre-recorded speech by President of Lebanon Michel Aoun on the 76th Session of the UN Basic Meeting at UN headquarters in New York, September 24, 2021 [John Angelillo /Pool Photo via AP Photo]

The place is it held?

The primary six periods of the UNGA had been held in several cities, beginning with London, New York, after which Paris.

Since 1952, practically all periods have taken place on the UN headquarters within the US metropolis of New York.

How do matters make it on the agenda?

Every UNGA session has a set agenda of matters that will probably be mentioned, voted on or referred to numerous sub-committees.

The matters embrace issues advised by member states or by different UN organs, issues put ahead by the secretary-general, and procedural issues pertaining to the meeting’s operation.

The UNGA’s Basic Committee units the agenda and the meeting finally decides how every agenda merchandise will probably be addressed.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres
UN Secretary-Basic Antonio Guterres speaks through the Remodeling Training Summit on the sidelines of the UNGA at UN headquarters in New York Metropolis, US, September 19, 2022 [Brendan McDermid/Reuters]

What is going to UNGA concentrate on this 12 months?

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is anticipated to be a significant focus on the annual gathering, together with the worldwide meals disaster that has been aggravated consequently.

UN Spokesman Stephane Dujarric instructed Al Jazeera UN Secretary-Basic Guterres didn’t not see an “fast mild on the finish of the tunnel” when it got here to ending the conflict.

“Nonetheless, there are alternatives to mitigate the struggling in Ukraine and the UN could be very current with our humanitarian help in Ukraine, but additionally to mitigate the worldwide impression of the conflict – particularly the meals disaster,” he added.

Like earlier years, local weather change may even be a significant subject of debate – specifically the current floods in Pakistan, which have ravaged the nation and affected greater than 30 million individuals.

Whereas member states have lifted most or all coronavirus restrictions of their international locations in an try and return to pre-pandemic situations, points similar to entry to vaccines, monetary restoration and different associated issues will probably be an important speaking level.

What are UNGA resolutions?

Resolutions are handed in all UN councils, such because the Human Rights Council, the Financial and Social Council and the Safety Council, all year long. Membership of the person councils modifications cyclically.

UNGA resolutions are seen as an expression of the desire of the worldwide neighborhood on a given subject, though they’re non-binding, which implies they haven’t any authorized energy however carry symbolic significance in world affairs.

In distinction, resolutions handed by the 15-member UN Safety Council are typically thought of binding below worldwide regulation and member states are obliged to behave on them.

What’s behind the latest setback in the Iran nuclear talks? | Nuclear Energy News

Video Period 24 minutes 10 seconds

From: Inside Story

European leaders say they doubt Tehran’s intentions to revive the 2015 settlement.

France, the UK and Germany have raised questions on Iran’s intentions to revive the 2015 nuclear settlement.

This comes days after Tehran despatched its response to the European Union’s newest proposed textual content for reviving the deal.

The three Western nations say Iran’s calls for are stopping talks from resuming in Vienna.

Iran has denied the European allegations.

So, is a deal nonetheless potential?

Presenter: Hashem Ahelbarra


Hillary Mann Leverett – former US Division of State diplomatic official and former US-Iran negotiator

Mohammad Marandi – media adviser for the Iranian negotiating crew in Vienna and a professor on the College of Tehran

What’s in the affidavit that led FBI to search Mar-a-Lago? | Donald Trump News

The affidavit that was behind the search warrant carried at Donald Trump’s dwelling earlier this month has shed some mild in regards to the probe into the previous president’s conduct, which has dominated headlines all through August.

Though closely redacted, the doc launched on Friday by a court docket order confirmed earlier stories that the FBI and the Division of Justice are investigating Trump for the alleged mishandling of categorized materials and supplied new particulars in regards to the August 8 search.

Trump and his supporters have been accusing the authorities with out proof of focusing on for political causes, a cost that the previous president renewed after the discharge of the affidavit on Friday.

Right here right here key takeaways from the doc:

The US is conducting a ‘legal investigation’ into Trump

The affidavit spells out what authorized students had suspected after the FBI carried out an unprecedented search on the former president’s Mar-a-Lago dwelling in Florida: The US authorities is finishing up a legal probe into Trump.

“The federal government is conducting a legal investigation regarding the improper elimination and storage of categorized data in unauthorized areas, in addition to the illegal concealment or elimination of presidency data,” the doc reads.

A legal investigation might lead to expenses in opposition to the previous president, which may throw the US political order into chaos. Trump is taken into account a frontrunner for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, however he has not formally introduced his candidacy.

The affidavit additionally stated there’s “possible trigger to imagine that proof of obstruction” can be discovered at Trump’s dwelling, with out providing particulars.

FBI looked for paperwork containing ‘Nationwide Protection Info’

In line with the affidavit, the 15 containers of paperwork returned to the US Nationwide Archives and Information Administration (NARA) by Trump’s workplace in January featured “classification markings, which seem to comprise Nationwide Protection Info (NDI)”.

The US authorities believed that there have been extra such paperwork to be retrieved within the search, the FBI stated.

A property receipt of things taken from Trump’s dwelling by the FBI confirmed earlier this month that brokers recovered paperwork labelled “prime secret” from Mar-a-Lago, the best degree of classification.

Mishandling data regarding nationwide defence is against the law underneath the Espionage Act, which goals to guard the US authorities from spying.

The FBI might have recognized the place precisely to search for paperwork

An FBI agent, whose title was blocked within the doc, appeared to supply exact places of the place categorized paperwork could also be discovered at Trump’s dwelling.

The agent stresses that “the storage room”, Trump’s residential suite, a spot known as Pine Corridor and the “45 Workplace” should not authorised areas for protecting categorized data, suggesting that the FBI suspected that such paperwork are saved there. Nowhere in Mar-a-Lago had been authorised for storage of categorized paperwork for the reason that finish of the Trump presidency the agent stated he believed.

“As described above, proof of the SUBJECT OFFENSES has been saved in a number of places on the PREMISES,” the agent writes, referring to Trump’s dwelling.

It’s not clear how the FBI obtained such data; previous paragraphs to that part are nearly totally redacted.

Former President Donald Trump speaks at a rally
Former President Donald Trump says the search warrant shouldn’t have been authorized [File: Joe Maiorana/AP Photo]

Division of Justice fears for witnesses

In a authorized transient accompanying the affidavit, the Division of Justice argued in opposition to making public the redacted elements of the doc.

“If witnesses’ identities are uncovered, they might be subjected to harms together with retaliation, intimidation, or harassment, and even threats to their bodily security,” prosecutors wrote. “Because the Courtroom has already famous, ‘these issues should not hypothetical on this case.’”

It added that FBI brokers whose names appeared in earlier paperwork regarding the investigation obtained threats of violence.

“Publicity of witnesses’ identities would seemingly erode their belief within the authorities’s investigation, and it will nearly actually chill different potential witnesses from coming ahead on this investigation and others,” the doc says.

The Division of Justice had opposed releasing the affidavit.

There may be extra to study

Whereas the 38-page doc provides some specifics in regards to the search and the suspected legal conduct through which the Division of Justice stated Trump engaged, it doesn’t inform the whole story.

The doc is considerably redacted with names and witness testimony is blocked.

And so, it will be troublesome to take a position whether or not the investigation will result in expenses in opposition to Trump primarily based on the affidavit.

Trump appeared unfazed by the doc’s launch on Friday, reiterating that the search at his dwelling, which he lablled a “complete public relations subterfuge” by the FBI and the Division of Justice, ought to have by no means been authorized by the choose.

What’s going on in Hong Kong’s courts? | Courts News

Hundreds of individuals in Hong Kong are dealing with court docket motion for participating in 2019’s mass protests, which grew out of opposition to a mainland extradition invoice into wider requires democracy.

Whereas some are well-known names from the town’s political opposition, many others are frequent residents who determined to hitch the months-long demonstrations.

Greater than 10,000 individuals have been arrested previously three years for his or her alleged involvement within the protests, authorities criticism and pro-democracy political actions, in response to Hong Kong authorities information. Of these dealing with costs, the overwhelming majority are individuals beneath the age of 30, though in addition they embody a number of the metropolis’s veteran opposition leaders.

On Friday, two youngsters had been sentenced to 5 and a half years in jail every for rioting, after being cleared of an earlier cost of manslaughter over the demise of a 70-year-old man who was hit within the head by a brick thrown in a confrontation between rival teams of protesters.

With the territory’s vibrant custom of civil disobedience, Hong Kong individuals weren’t unfamiliar with the danger of arrest, however infractions that had been as soon as thought-about minor offences are actually ending up in jail time.

Most of the metropolis’s pro-democracy politicians have been arrested underneath nationwide safety laws that was imposed by Beijing in 2020, and have been languishing in jail for months in pre-trial detention.

Based mostly on British frequent regulation, Hong Kong’s justice system was as soon as considered one of the vital unbiased and sturdy in Asia, however has been thrust into the highlight because the nationwide safety regulation was put in place.

Overseas judges have left the town, in addition to rank and file legal professionals, whereas US lawmakers might quickly sanction Hong Kong prosecutors for offences like “arbitrary detention of people for exercising universally recognised human rights”.

Chinese language “mainland-style felony justice” and “lawfare” ways have discovered their approach into Hong Kong, mentioned William Nee, analysis and advocacy coordinator at Chinese language Human Rights Defenders.

“The amount of instances is a part of it, and a part of it’s the prolonged authorized course of that folks face – and we’re solely two years into it,” he informed Al Jazeera. “We predict it might go on for a lot of, a few years the place individuals are unable to journey, unable to go away Hong Kong, unable to talk to the media, and unable to take part in public life,” he mentioned.

Who’re on trial and why

Greater than 1,000 trials are underneath approach and extra are as a consequence of begin in 2023, in response to information compiled by the Hong Kong Democracy Council (HKDC), a US-based advocacy group.

Whereas there are other ways to depend the information, the advocacy group estimates that Hong Kong is now house to 432 “political prisoners” – individuals arrested for his or her political views or actions – who’ve accomplished sentences, with 582 individuals nonetheless in custody or awaiting trial.

Most of the arrests over the previous three years are linked to the 2019 protests, though not all.

Frequent costs associated to the protests embody taking part in an illegal meeting and rioting, whereas these accused of being “leaders” face costs like incitement and organising an illegal meeting. Greater than three-quarters of Hong Kong’s “political prisoners” are younger individuals beneath the age of 30, in response to the HKDC. Greater than half are beneath 25.

Beijing imposed the nationwide safety regulation in 2020.

The fallout has been felt among the many political opposition, civil society leaders, journalists, and “virtually all non-violent pro-democracy actions in Hong Kong”, in response to Eric Lai, a Hong Kong regulation fellow on the Georgetown Heart for Asian Legislation.

Media mogul Jimmy Lai Chee-ying, founder of Apple Daily, walks to a prison van to head to court.
Media mogul Jimmy Lai, the founding father of Apple Every day, has been in jail pending trial underneath the nationwide safety regulation because the finish of December 2020 after a decide revoked his bail [File: Tyrone Siu/Reuters]

Between July 2020 and June 2022, 203 individuals had been arrested underneath the regulation and 123 charged, in response to information compiled by Lai. Many defendants face further costs underneath Hong Kong’s atypical felony statutes.

Whereas the safety regulation particularly refers to crimes of subversion, sedition, “terrorism” and “collusion with international forces”, greater than 50 individuals have been arrested for “seditious” or “secessionist” speech underneath not too long ago revived sedition legal guidelines that date from the British colonial period.

To date solely 10 individuals have been convicted underneath the brand new regulation, however many instances have been delayed by Hong Kong’s strict COVID-19 insurance policies, in response to Lai.

Nationwide safety police have focused individuals like Jimmy Lai, the previous writer of Apple Every day and longtime critic of the Communist Social gathering, in addition to 47 activists and opposition leaders charged and arrested for organising an unofficial main election for the pro-democracy camp in 2019.

They’ve additionally arrested leaders of the protest umbrella group Hong Kong Alliance in Help of Patriotic Democratic Actions in China for failing to submit proof to police, whereas scholar teams have been charged with “terrorism”.

Sedition legal guidelines have shut down a lot of Hong Kong’s unbiased press as information retailers have folded after workers had been both charged or feared being charged underneath the sedition regulation.

A brand new class of criminals

The nationwide safety regulation has created a brand new felony process in Hong Kong that strays from its frequent regulation custom.

Nationwide safety defendants are heard earlier than a panel of three judges handpicked for phrases of 1 12 months by the town’s chief government, mentioned Nee, which suggests the justices can simply be eliminated.

Not like different felony instances, there is no such thing as a jury and defendants are virtually solely denied bail whereas authorized proceedings proceed – typically for months.

Defendants in these instances are tasked with proving they won’t “proceed to hazard nationwide safety” along with assembly atypical bail situations, in response to a Hong Kong defence lawyer and rule of regulation monitor who spoke on situation of anonymity.

Judges wearing robes and horsehair wigs attend a ceremony to mark the opening of the legal year in Hong Kong
Hong Kong’s judicial system is predicated on British frequent regulation and was as soon as considered one of the vital unbiased within the area [File: Philip Fong/AFP]

Among the most high-profile instances embody the 47 individuals who had been picked up over the first and have already spent greater than a 12 months in detention after the prosecutors appealed their preliminary proper to publish bail.

Bail hearings themselves have turn into a virtually not possible job as, underneath the brand new regulation, defendants have misplaced the presumption of innocence – a basic proper within the frequent regulation system.

Responsible till confirmed harmless

Circumstances heard within the atypical felony system, which generally concern rank and file protesters, have additionally modified dramatically over the previous three years.

The primary main change has been the place they’re heard.

The place instances of civil disobedience had been as soon as referred to the Justice of the Peace’s court docket – the bottom rung of the felony justice system – they’re now commonly despatched as much as the district court docket or Excessive Court docket, in response to the defence lawyer. Magistrates are restricted to two-year sentences, however the district and Excessive Court docket can impose phrases of so long as seven years and life imprisonment, respectively.

The defence lawyer mentioned in lots of instances, even rank and file protesters shifting by means of the atypical felony justice system have misplaced the presumption of innocence.

Typical instances concern costs like rioting, though many defendants weren’t caught within the act however as an alternative close by the scene or carrying tools like goggles or masks. Each gadgets had been utilized by protesters and journalists to guard themselves from tear gasoline and pepper spray, which turned an indicator of the protests within the late summer season of 2019 and was even fired at bystanders.

The lawyer mentioned they felt that in lots of instances protesters had misplaced the presumption of innocence as judges would problem contradictory verdicts relying on the case.

“In a system the place the identical info can result in completely different outcomes earlier than completely different judges, when judges constantly disregard defence testimony and select to depend on police testimony even when unbelievable – these aren’t honest trials, that’s not the rule of regulation,” the lawyer mentioned.

From left, Hong Kong scholar Hui Po-keung, Catholic Cardinal Joseph Zen, barrister Margaret Ng and singer Denise Ho arrive for an appearance at a court in Hong Kong
Greater than 1,000 trials are presently underneath approach in Hong Kong on account of 2019’s protests and the imposition of the nationwide safety regulation. These dealing with costs vary from frequent residents to a few of Hong Kong’s most well-known faces together with scholar Hui Po-keung (left), Cardinal Joseph Zen, barrister Margaret Ng and singer Denise Ho (proper) [File: Kin Cheung/AP Photo]
A person standing outside a court in Hong Kong carries a poster showing the 47 pro-democracy politicians and activists arrested for organising a primary to choose their own candidates for an election that was then postponed
The case of the 47 pro-democracy politicians and activists arrested for organising their very own main to decide on their candidates for the Legislative Council election that was then postponed, is among the most high-profile instances presently within the Hong Kong courts [File: Kin Cheung/AP Photo]

Sluggish wheels of justice

Prison procedures have additionally taken longer, partly as a consequence of COVID-19, mentioned Samuel Bickett, a lawyer and Hong Kong regulation fellow on the Georgetown College Legislation Centre who served 4 and a half months in jail for a 2019 altercation with an off-duty Hong Kong police officer.

Whereas Hong Kong regulation doesn’t assure the appropriate to a speedy trial, critics say the delays are disproportionate to the crime.

“The typical time from arrest to sentencing by means of mid-2021 is 380 days, that’s terribly lengthy. I imply we’re not speaking a couple of homicide case right here. That is greater than a 12 months to get by means of an illegal meeting case or principally quite simple instances,” Bickett informed Al Jazeera primarily based on information he’s compiling for an upcoming Georgetown Legislation report.

Bickett’s felony case took a 12 months and a half from begin to end, he mentioned.

Bail has additionally turn into harder to safe even for these charged for offences that don’t contain the safety regulation, and can also include onerous situations comparable to curfews, or guidelines associated to high school for younger defendants.

Longer and harsher sentencing

Sentencing has additionally turn into harsher no matter age or previous felony report, mentioned Steven Vines, a veteran Hong Kong journalist who left the town in 2021. Public order instances that after might need resulted in fines or neighborhood service now appeal to jail time.

HKDC information discovered that of practically 3,000 individuals prosecuted, 67 % had been convicted, receiving a mean jail sentence of 1.6 years. Sentences for suspected protest “leaders” and folks charged underneath the nationwide safety regulation are even longer, and lots of face a number of costs.

“Individuals with no felony convictions by any means are being given custodial sentences for issues like illegal meeting, which previously would’ve incurred a advantageous, nothing extra. People who find themselves being convicted of extra critical offences are getting sentences that are akin to armed robbers with a felony report,” Vines informed Al Jazeera.

Georgetown’s Lai, nonetheless, says this isn’t solely surprising.

Hong Kong has lengthy used public order legal guidelines in opposition to protesters, even earlier than the 1997 handover to China.

However in recent times, Hong Kong’s courts have indicated that they might come down tougher on non-violent protesters amid prolonged instances surrounding the protest leaders of 2014’s Umbrella Motion. One other case across the similar indicated that rioting offences would even be met with harsher phrases.

John Lee (on left) stands om a stage with Chinese president Xi Jinping
John Lee (left), with China’s President Xi Jinping, has made safety his precedence and is planning a Hong Kong model of Beijing’s safety regulation [File: Selim Chtayti/Reuters]

Hong Kong’s authorities has mentioned the prosecutions and nationwide safety regulation are vital to revive order after 2019’s protracted protests introduced the territory to a standstill.

Town’s new chief government John Lee, a former police officer who was safety chief through the protests, plans to enact an area model of Beijing’s safety regulation. Hong Kong can also quickly see further legal guidelines governing on-line information and web posts, just like legal guidelines handed by Singapore.

For now, prosecutions of 2019 protesters are anticipated to proceed over the following two years as a result of prolonged backlog – the nationwide safety instances might take even longer as a result of quantity of proof compiled by prosecutors and successive delays. Within the meantime, a lot of Hong Kong’s opposition and civil society will stay silenced, exiled or in jail.

What’s next for the January 6 investigation – and for Democrats? | Politics

From: The Backside Line

Republicans are focusing the controversy on crime and inflation forward of November’s vote. What’s the Democratic platform?

Whose message is swaying American voters within the lead-up to the midterm elections later this yr?

Republicans wish to focus consideration on crime, immigration and inflation. Latest polls point out that former President Donald Trump would win in opposition to President Joe Biden if presidential elections had been held at this time. That is regardless of the year-long efforts of a Democratic Get together-led panel that has been investigating Trump’s involvement within the efforts to reverse his election loss in 2020.

Host Steve Clemons asks Democratic Congressman Brendan Boyle in regards to the January 6 investigation, and his social gathering’s prospects for holding onto energy after November.

What’s in US President Joe Biden’s bipartisan gun violence bill? | Explainer News

New legislation is probably the most sweeping gun violence invoice in a long time and follows a spate of mass shootings in the US.

US President Joe Biden signed into legislation probably the most sweeping gun violence invoice in a long time, a bipartisan compromise that appeared unimaginable till a latest collection of mass shootings.

Citing the households of capturing victims he met, the president stated: “Their message to us was, ‘Do one thing’. What number of occasions did we hear that? ‘Simply do one thing. For God’s sake, simply do one thing.’ Right this moment we did.

“It’s time, when it appears inconceivable to get something carried out in Washington, we’re doing one thing consequential.”

Listed here are some highlights of the invoice that Biden signed on Saturday:

Expanded background checks:

  • State and native juvenile and psychological well being data of gun purchasers will likely be a part of federal background checks for consumers age 18 to twenty years.
  • The three-day most for gathering data will likely be lengthened to as much as 10 days to look juvenile knowledge.
  • If 10 days lapse and not using a decision, the sale will undergo.

‘Boyfriend loophole’:

  • Convicted home violence offenders will likely be denied weapons if they’ve a present or previous “persevering with severe relationship of a romantic or intimate nature” with a sufferer.
  • An abuser’s proper to purchase firearms will likely be restored after 5 years if no further violent crimes are dedicated.
  • Firearms are at the moment denied to home abusers if they’re married, dwell with or had a baby with a sufferer.

Crimson flag legal guidelines:

  • Federal support will likely be given to the 19 states, plus the District of Columbia, which have legal guidelines serving to authorities get courtroom orders to briefly take away weapons from individuals deemed harmful. These states will want robust processes for difficult the taking of firearms. Different states may use cash for disaster intervention packages.

Psychological well being:

  • The invoice will develop neighborhood behavioural well being clinics, assist states bolster psychological well being packages in faculties and supply extra psychological well being consultations remotely.


  • The invoice will improve spending on faculty psychological well being, disaster intervention, violence prevention packages, psychological well being employee coaching and faculty security.

Federally licensed gun sellers:

  • Present legislation requires that folks “engaged within the enterprise” of promoting weapons be licensed, which implies they need to conduct background checks. The invoice defines that as promoting firearms ‘‘to predominantly earn a revenue”, in an effort to prosecute individuals who evade that requirement.

Gun traffickers:

  • The invoice will create federal crimes for gun traffickers and “straw purchasers” who purchase weapons for individuals who wouldn’t cross background checks.
  • The penalties are as much as 25 years in jail.
  • Such offenders are actually primarily prosecuted for paperwork violations.


  • The nonpartisan Congressional Finances Workplace estimates the price of the invoice at $13 billion, largely for psychological well being and faculties.

What’s behind the record number of displaced people? | Refugees

From: Inside Story

Greater than 100 million folks have been displaced all over the world, in response to the United Nations.

Extra folks than ever earlier than have been forcibly displaced all over the world, in response to the UN’s refugee company.

Final month, the United Nations Excessive Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) stated the entire variety of displaced folks handed the 100 million mark.

The UNHCR famous a number of causes, together with battle, local weather change and persecution, and stated the struggle in Ukraine has made the scenario worse – displacing greater than 12 million folks in lower than 4 months.

Can this rising development be reversed? And in that case, how?

Presenter: Mohammed Jamjoom


Shabia Mantoo – spokesperson for the UNHCR

Nando Sigona – professor of worldwide migration on the College of Birmingham and director of the Institute for Analysis into Superdiversity

Behrouz Boochani – writer and former refugee