New UN Secretary-General’s 2017 Resolution: “Let’s Make Peace Our Priority”

By: Sabrina Martín - @SabrinaMartinR - Jan 2, 2017, 8:47 am
Secretary General António Guterres
Secretary General António Guterres called for peace in his first speech. (vangaurdia)

EspañolThe United Nations began this year with a new Secretary General António Guterres, who in his first official speech said that his main goal is to achieve peace.

The Portuguese diplomat assumed the position at the start of January, promising changes and offering the UN as a mediator in conflicts around the world.

“Today, New Year’s Day, I ask all of us to do the same thing: to make peace our priority,” Guterres said in his first speech.

On the other hand, the diplomat criticized the wars and conflicts that persist in the world, saying that no one is a winner from them.

“Everybody loses,” he said.

The former Prime Minister of Portugal and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees comes to the post with full support from member states, who elected him last October.

The new Secretary-General has already made it clear that the UN “must be ready to change,” admitting its shortcomings and reforming the way it works.

Most say his main challenge will be in Syria, where the UN has been trying for years to create a political settlement to end the country’s civil war.

Sabrina Martín Sabrina Martín

Sabrina Martín is a Venezuelan journalist, commentator, and editor based in Valencia with experience in corporate communication. Follow @SabrinaMartinR.

Venezuela: State Raw Materials Monopoly Threatens Journalism

By: Sabrina Martín - @SabrinaMartinR - Dec 30, 2016, 4:41 pm
Independent journalism has been threatened by the Maduro government's refusal to allocate raw materials (

Español At least 13 print media publications in Venezuela were affected by the lack of raw materials in the last half of the year. For this reason, many have been forced to cut the circulation of their newspapers. The Venezuelan Institute of Press and Society (Ipys) warned that the lack of paper products in the South American country will only intensify the spread of misinformation, as the government increasingly puts pressure on independent media outlets. Read More: Venezuelan Newspapers Attacked with Excrement over Critical Reporting Read More: Venezuelan Newspaper Editor Jailed for Libeling Government The institute made this assessment in wake of the news that the independent regional daily El Impulso reported that it will only circulate until January 31 due to lack of paper. "Venezuelan press outlets have had temporary forced closures in the past; some for a week or a month. The Impulse would be the first case of indefinite cessation of circulation after December 31, "said Mariengracia Chirinos, director of Freedom of Information for Ipys Venezuela. Chirinos explained that the situation has been occurring from 2013 on, and that it is a result of the centralization of the importation of material for newspaper that is a function of the Venezuelan state. googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1459522593195-0'); }); In Venezuela it is the executive branch which decides which news mediums are given the hard currency and the raw materials in order to be able to print and circulate. However, only independent media outlets, likely to be more anti-government in their outlook, have been affected by the lack of raw materials. In the past three years, about 48 print media publications have reported difficulties in accessing raw materials and have been forced to reduce their publishing; around 14 newspapers have been forced to temporarily suspend circulation, according to figures from the organization. Nicolas Maduro, like his predecessor Hugo Chavez, has often faced international criticism for cracking down on independent journalists. Source: El Impulso

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