united nations

South Korean HIV/AIDS Patients Face Discrimination & Abuse

Christian Science Monitor writer John Powers says that while HIV & AIDS patients in South Korea have long found it difficult to find medical care, as the number of cases increase, so does patient abuse. Korea FM spoke with John Power & US attorney Benjamin Wagner, who has argued at the UN against discrimination in South Korea, to find out more about how HIV & AIDS patients are treated in the ROK.

Interview answers, both in written & audio form, have been edited for length & clarity.


Disabled South Koreans Most Common Victims Of Discrimination

Data from the National Human Rights Commission of Korea shows more than half of all South Korean discrimination complaints in 2015 were filed by persons with disabilities, making the disabled the most common victims of discrimination in the entire country. Korea FM spoke with Ho Kyun Jeong of the National Human Rights Commission of Korea & Daniela Bas, Director of the Division for Social Policy & Development in the United Nations Department of Economic Affairs, to find out why.


Marmot’s Hole Podcast: War Of Words On The Korean Peninsula

Robert Koehler & Chance Dorland continue last week’s focus on rising tensions between North and South Korea.

The ROK is now questioning North Korea’s UN membership, President Park Geun-hye has called on the nation to remain on high alert over possible terrorist attacks, THAAD deployment as been delayed, & even name calling is taking place as North Korea has printed that President Park is a “crazy old b—-.”


UN Memorial Cemetery - God Bless America!

The UN Memorial Cemetery (http://www.unmck.or.kr/) is one of the most memorable sites in Busan that I've been to so far.  The cemetery, dedicated to the international soldiers who gave their lives in the Korean War is next to the Busan Museum, so I was able to see both during a long afternoon.  I initially thought I was just going to pass through a cemetery with some statues and marble monoliths, but it turned out to be much more - though there are plenty of huge marble fixtures and displays. 

North Korean ambassador appointed head of U.N.’s Conference on Disarmament

Despite facing U.N. sanctions on its nuclear weapons program, North Korea received news this Tuesday that its ambassador So Se Pyong was appointed president of the U.N. Conference on Disarmament. Known as the “single multilateral disarmament negotiating forum of the international community,” the Conference on Disarmament appoints presidents on a rotating basis.


U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon re-elected for second term


Ban Ki-moon Reveals His Sinister Plot

Colum Lynch fears the nauseating truth about U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon: he’s old-school Korean, which means once he has a political job, he’ll never give it up without a bullet or a nudge from a superior.

The revelation was buried in an official U.N. readout of a New Year’s day exchange Ban had with South Korean president, Lee Myung-bak.


How the Old Hands Do It

Robert Koehler has some chuckles at U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s expense, but it seems even the ancient Middle Kingdom needs some schooling on diplomacy

Sha Zukang’s highly undiplomatic toast to Ban Ki-moon in the Alps last week raises questions about China’s diplomatic commitment to the United Nations, according to senior U.N. officials. Diplomats wonder whether the incident will spur Beijing to take the organization more seriously, and to send its best and brightest to serve at the world body.

“This raises questions about whether China is a mature power,” said a senior U.N.-based diplomat. “The Chinese need to think about this.”


The Kind of Comedy That Makes for Cynicism

Brian Fung’s attention to the Korean peninsula is welcome, but not if crackpot campaigns, like a “Peace Forest” in the DMZ is all he can find to report about.

A 13-year-old American plans to visit North Korea this week and perhaps meet leader Kim Jong Il to pitch his idea for a “children’s peace forest” in the demilitarized zone.

(…)


The UNSC Cheonan Statement Is a Gift the US Doesn’t Deserve

I’m not surprised. Dismayed, yes. But, strangely I feel vindicated.

Friday’s U.N. Security Council statement condemning the March sinking the South Korean warship Cheonan, but not fingering the culprit, may look like another example of the grubby compromises required to close a deal here.

But it could have been a lot worse.

In the final stages of the closed door negotiations of the text, North Korea’s veto-wielding champion, China’s U.N. envoy Li Baodong, sought to gut the statement of any language that even hinted at North Korean responsibility, diplomats familiar with the talks told Turtle Bay.


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