H.E. Ms. Betty King, U.S. Ambassador to the UN in Geneva


About Ambassador King
Ambassador Betty King was nominated on October 22, 2009, by President Obama to serve as the Representative of the United States to the Office of the United Nations and Other International Organizations in Geneva. She was confirmed by the U.S. Senate and attested by the President on February 12, 2010.

Ambassador King served as the United States Representative to the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations under Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. In that capacity, she worked on human rights, development, children, aging, and population issues. She was the principal U.S. negotiator on the Millennium Development Goals.

Ambassador King has an extensive background in philanthropy having served as the Vice President of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, an organization dedicated to improving the lives of disadvantaged children. She served as the Senior Advisor to the CEO of the California Endowment where she worked to improve health services and systems, and as an advisor to the Atlantic Philanthropies on their programs for children and youth.

In the public sector, Ambassador King has served as the Deputy Commissioner for Mental Health Services in the District of Columbia, as the Director of the Department on Aging in Arkansas, and as an Assistant professor at the University of Arkansas. She currently serves on the boards of Refugees International, The United Nations Association of the United States, Phoenix House, and on the Advisory Board of the Annenberg School of Public Diplomacy.

Ambassador King earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Windsor, Ontario, Canada, a Masters Degree at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, was a National Humanities Fellow at Harvard University, and a Public Policy Fellow at the


Rotary Day at the United Nations November 1, 2014

More that 1,200 Rotarians, Rotaractors, and Interactors attended the Rotary Day at the United Nations. District Governor David Del Monte (second from left) also attend the sold-out annual meeting. This annual meetings was started more than 25 years ago by our own New York Rotarian Sylvan Barnet. The first few years there were only 50 to 100 attendees, but has now grown to be a major Rotary event with attendees and RI Board members from around the world.




 Alanna Walker, President of the Rotaract Club of the UN (center),  outlined her club's essay project during Rotary UN Day.  Rotary International President Gary C.K. Huang from Taiwan was also on the panel (left).   The Rotaract Club of the United Nations is sponsored by The Rotary Club of New York.

H.E. Mr R. Mansour , Permanent Observer of Palestine to the UN

He stressed the importance the two-State solution on the basis of the pre-1967 borders and the longstanding parameters enshrined in the relevant United Nations resolutions, Madrid Principles, Arab Peace Initiative and Quartet Roadmap.and also feels that  the Security Council’s paralysis,

In April 2014, President Mahmoud Abbas signed 15 instruments of accession to multilateral treaties, affirming the State of Palestine’s acceptance of the principles therein, readiness to uphold legal obligations, and commitment to promoting the rights of the Palestinian people in accordance with the law. Among those are the core treaties of international humanitarian law – the Four Geneva Conventions, Additional Protocol 1 and the 1907 Hague Convention, and the core human rights treaties, including, among others, the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights and on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, Convention on the Rights of the Child, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid. 

The Palestinian people will never forgo their inalienable rights, and the Palestinian leadership will continue to take all necessary political, legal and peaceful measures for the fulfillment of those rights and the achievement of justice, freedom and peace for our people. We once again appeal for the international community’s support in this noble endeavor.




our guest speaker for October 2014 was H.E. Mr R. Mansour , Permanent Observer of Palestine to the UN

Mr. Udo Janz, Director of the NY office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees

Our guest speaker for September 2014 was Mr. Udo Janz.  He is the Director of the NY office The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees that was established on December 14, 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly. The agency is mandated to lead and co-ordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide. Its primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. It strives to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another State, with the option to return home voluntarily, integrate locally or to resettle in a third country. It also has a mandate to help stateless people. In more than five decades, the agency has helped tens of millions of people restart their lives. Today, a staff of some 6,600 people in more than 110 countries continues to help about 34 million persons.

Septmber meeting

Peace Corps and Rotary kickoff historic collaboration


John Osterlund (far left) and Ron Burton watch as Peace Corps Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet and Rotary International General Secretary John Hewko sign a letter of collaboration on a one-year pilot program in the Philippines, Thailand, and Togo.
Photo Credit: Rotary International/Alyce Henson
In an effort to promote global development and volunteer service, Rotary and Peace Corps have agreed to participate in a one-year pilot program in the Philippines, Thailand, and Togo.
Under the agreement, Rotary clubs and Peace Corps volunteers are encouraged to share their resources and knowledge to boost the impact of development projects in these three countries.
Opportunities for collaboration include supporting community projects, training, networking, and community education. Through the , Rotary clubs can continue to provide small grants to support volunteers and their communities.
Peace Corps Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet and Rotary International General Secretary John Hewko signed the on Monday, 5 May, at Rotary's headquarters during a ceremony that was attended by RI President Ron Burton and RPCV Rotary staff. In his remarks to the audience, Burton applauded the collaboration and both organizations' commitments to service.
"Today's announcement is particularly meaningful for me because I come from a family of Rotarians," said Hessler-Radelet, referring to her father, grandfather, and aunt. "We are eager to join together in common efforts to inspire volunteerism across the country and around the world."
Hewko noted how both organizations are committed to improving lives and building stronger communities by addressing the root causes of violence and conflict, such as poverty, illiteracy, disease, and lack of access to clean water and sanitation.
The two organizations also agreed to explore expanding the collaboration to more countries based on the results of the pilot. Rotary will enlist the support of its members in recruiting Peace Corps volunteers and involving returned Peace Corps volunteers in service projects at home.

Rotary members made collaboration possible

Hessler-Radelet credited Rotary members in the Denver area, particularly returned Peace Corps volunteers Sue Fox, Valerie Hopkins, and Steve Werner, with helping to make the collaboration possible.
The three Rotarians, who attended the signing, are members of the District 5450 Rotary-Peace Corps Alliance Committee, which has sought a formal agreement between the two organizations since 2010.
Werner said they wanted to create an official relationship to make it easier for Rotary clubs and Peace Corps volunteers to connect. "[The letter] ensures compatibility and a shared value system," he added.
Jesse Davis, one of more than a dozen Rotary employees who are returned Peace Corps volunteers, said he hopes the partnership inspires more like it around the world.
"While serving as a Peace Corps response volunteer in Panama, I found myself working with the local Rotary club on countless occasions. They were an integral partner in my work," he said.

Strengthening connections

The letter of collaboration not only officially recognizes the partnership between the two organizations, but also encourages Rotary clubs and Peace Corps volunteers to expand the connections already in place.
In Togo, Peace Corps volunteers Daniel Brown and David Gooze have teamed up with Rotary and other partners in the United States and Togo to distribute more than 5,000 soccer balls to disadvantaged youth. They are organizing 'More Than Just a Game' sessions, which use soccer as a medium to teach children about malaria prevention.
"It's just one example of how Rotary and Peace Corps can collaborate on the ground to achieve lasting impact in the communities where we work," Hessler-Radelet said.
Within the Philippines, Thailand, and Togo, Peace Corps posts and Rotary districts will coordinate at the country level with support from the headquarters of both organizations. Local Rotary clubs interested in working with Peace Corps volunteers should contact their district governors. Clubs located elsewhere should work through their Rotary counterparts in the pilot countries.
what Peace Corps Acting Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet says on the collaboration
how you can support peace through Rotary
Learn about the
Rotary News


Polio Update from the New York Times

|​NYT Now

Disease of Pakistan’s Poor Now Worries the Affluent


A worker administering polio vaccine drops to a child at Jinnah International Airport in Karachi. Credit Rizwan Tabassum/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

KARACHI, Pakistan — Until recently, polio was considered a poor man’s problem in Pakistan — a crippling virus that festered in the mountainous tribal belt, traversed the country on interprovincial buses, and spread via infected children who played in the open sewers of sprawling slums.
But since the World Health Organization declared a polio emergency here last week — identifying Pakistan, Syria and Cameroon as the world’s main reservoirs of the virus — the disease has become an urgent concern of the wealthy, too.
A W.H.O. recommendation that travelers not leave Pakistan without a polio vaccination certificate has caused confusion. Doctors, clinics and hospitals have been inundated with inquiries. The association of travel agents has reported “panic” among air travel customers.
The government, which is scrambling to meet the W.H.O. requirement, says it needs two weeks to make arrangements at airports and buy more vaccines. But to most Pakistanis, it is a jolting reminder of the gravity of a crisis that has been quietly building for years, and which is now, according to the W.H.O., spilling into other countries, threatening to undo decades of efforts to eradicate polio across the globe.
Despite years of multimillion-dollar immunization campaigns, led by the government and international organizations, this year Pakistan reported 59 new polio cases, by far the most of any country. The W.H.O. had reported only 68 cases worldwide as of April 30.
Instability is driving the crisis. The Taliban, which had long opposed the vaccinations as part of what its leaders said was a Jewish conspiracy, has stymied immunization efforts in the northwest and the tribal belt, where infection rates are highest. The Taliban have forbidden vaccinations in North Waziristan for years, and killed vaccination teams in other areas.
Suspicions among the Taliban and others that the vaccination campaign was an espionage effort gained currency after 2011, when a covert, C.I.A.-financed vaccination campaign used to try to find Osama bin Laden came to light.
The sense of urgency that has gripped health professionals for years, however, was largely absent among the upper class, who have had limited exposure to polio. “There was a total disconnect” in society about the problem, said Dr. Anita Zaidi, a pediatric infectious diseases expert and a member of the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group.
Some of the highest refusal rates for polio vaccination were recorded in wealthy Karachi neighborhoods, where residents had little faith in public health care, Dr. Zaidi said, citing a 2011 study. Now, the vaccination requirement has drawn an ambivalent response from the wealthy.
Ibrahim Shamsi, a textile exporter who intends to travel to Canada, called it “a lot of botheration.” He said, “I’m sure I was vaccinated as a child so I don’t know why I need to do it now.”
Seher Naveed, an artist with travel plans for Berlin and Amsterdam, said she was worried that the vaccine could have an adverse effect on adults.
In Lahore, Pakistan’s second largest city, residents of the wealthy Gulberg neighborhood also expressed unease about the new requirements. Jameel Ahmed, a businessman, said he was embarrassed to have to take a vaccination at the age of 57.
A woman who gave her name as Mrs. Ahsan said the restrictions were discriminatory and unfair. “We have been singled out in the world,” she said. For some experts, the worry is that immunizing all travelers will divert scarce resources from efforts to fight polio where it is most prevalent. Dr. Zulfiqar A. Bhutta of the Center for Excellence in Women and Child Health at Karachi’s Aga Khan University, said the W.H.O. travel advisory was “unfortunate,” and would foster an erroneous sense that polio is a universal problem in Pakistan.
“It’s not — it’s a geographic problem, and this will take the pressure off the hot spots,” he said.
One such hot spot is on the edge of Karachi where, on a desolate stretch of road at the city gates, the fight against polio is being fought bus by bus.
Buses filled with ethnic Pashtuns, fleeing poverty or conflict in the northwest, enter the city every day; some are unwittingly carrying the polio virus from areas where infection rates are highest, W.H.O. officials say.
On Friday morning a team of eight government health workers, clad in bright yellow jackets and blue caps, boarded passenger buses as they entered the city, administering the vaccine to children under the age of 5.
One vaccinator, Nadir Ali, wove through the crowded aisles with a box filled with vaccines. Children bawled in protest, and passengers looked bemused. “Shh,” one mother said to her crying baby. “You’ve gotten the drops, now quiet.”
Every day Mr. Ali and his fellow vaccinators, who are paid $2.50 a day, immunize at least 2,800 children. Some eight million children were immunized at 10 such transit points across the country in 2013, in a program that is partly financed by Rotary International and supported by the W.H.O. “Terrorists may want to destroy Pakistan, but this virus is destroying our nation,” Mr. Ali said.
Karachi’s importance in this battle stems from its position as a trade and transit hub, which facilitates the movement of migrants, travelers and, more recently, the polio virus.
“Karachi acts not only as a reservoir for the disease, but also as an amplifier,” said Dr. Zubair Mufti, the national coordinator for the W.H.O.’s polio campaign.
Efforts to banish polio from the city have also been hurt by the growing Taliban presence in ethnic Pashtun neighborhoods. There have been several militant attacks on polio vaccination teams since the first in July 2012; over the same period reported cases of polio — a disease that can be carried by adults but mostly strikes infant children — have steadily risen. Eight cases were reported in 2013; so far this year the figure is four.
The latest Taliban attack in Qayumabad, an area close to the upscale Defense neighborhood, on Jan. 21 resulted in the death of three female health workers.
One Pakistani Taliban militant, who identified himself as Gul, said in an interview that his group had attacked two polio teams in Karachi in 2012 because “they were trying to find the hide-outs of our leaders in these areas.”
But some experts say the bin Laden factor has been overstated, noting that the Taliban started to target polio workers long before the American commando raid that killed the Al Qaeda leader.
“The Taliban in North Waziristan didn’t stop the campaign because of Shakil Afridi, they did it for political reasons,” said Dr. Bhutta, referring to the Pakistani doctor hired by the C.I.A. to run the vaccination campaign in 2011. “And they’ve done themselves and the country a lot of damage.”
But for Mr. Ali, the immunizer jumping between buses outside Karachi, the most immediate problem is persuading reluctant parents. Some passengers offered up their children enthusiastically for immunization; others were cajoled into compliance by fellow passengers or even bus drivers.
But one mother, on a bus from Bahawalpur in Punjab Province, staunchly refused his entreaties to immunize her baby son.
“The vaccination is necessary against the virus. There are no side effects,” he pleaded.
“I’m his mother,” said the woman firmly.
Mr. Ali shrugged and retreated.


Central Europe and the Crimea from a Bulgarian Perspective

International Breakfast  Apr 16
Our featured speaker was H.E. Mr. Milen Lyutskonov, Consul-General of Bulgaria. His topic was  "Central Europe and the Crimea from a Bulgarian Perspective."

Milen Lyutskanov, Consul General of Bulgaria in New York was appointed  to represent his country in New York. He is a career diplomats with extensive service. Before his current post in New York, Milen Lyutskanov was Deputy Permanent Representative and Deputy Chief of the Bulgarian mission to NATO. Lyutskanov was also Deputy Foreign Minister.
The President of Bulgaria Rosen Plevneliev is following with concern the development of the situation in Ukraine after Russia’s Upper House of Parliament adopted a decree which allows the usage of Russian armed forces in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea.

The Head of State has said more than once that the only lasting solution may be achieved by peaceful means and if the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine is guaranteed. The usage of military force to occupy foreign territories is violation of the rules of international law.

The President calls on the UN Security Council and the countries-guarantors of the security in Ukraine, in compliance with the Budapest Memorandum of 1994, to ensure a peaceful solution to the problem and to avoid a further escalation of the tension.

In May 2014 presidential elections are due to be held in Ukraine. The people of Ukraine should alone decide what their future should be in a democratic way.

If necessary, the President will convene the Consultative Council for National Security. 


Permanent Representative of Belgium to the United Nations

H.E.Bénédicte Frankinet, is the currrent  Permanent Representative of Belgium to the United Nations. Before her appointment, Ms. Frankinet was Ambassador to Israel since 2008, after she previously served as Director for the United Nations at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Brussels from 2003.From 1999 to 2003, Ms. Frankinet was Ambassador to Zimbabwe, accredited also to Mozambique, Malawi and Zambia.  Between 1994 and 1999, she served as Counsellor, then Deputy Head of Mission at her country’s Embassy in Paris. In 1992, Ms. Frankinet was an adviser in the private office of the Minister for Foreign Affairs, and from 1988 to 1992, she was First Secretary at Belgium’s Permanent Representation to the European Communities in Brussels.
She served a previous stint, between 1983 and 1988, at the New York Permanent Mission as First Secretary, and was an attaché in Brasilia from 1979 to 1983.Ms. Frankinet holds degrees in political science, social science and journalism from the Free University of Brussels.

Like Rotary international,Belgium is an important donor to the development programs of the UN-system. In 2005 Belgian contributions amounted to 184 million euro, or 12% of its total official development assistance. Belgium plays an active role in the executive boards of UNDP, UNICEF, UNFPA, UNIFEM and UNCDF, and in consultations between these funds and programmes and the major donor countries.
In its relationship with the funds and programs Belgium strongly emphasises the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals and of the 2005 Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness.
When funding programs of UNDP, UNICEF, UNFPA, UNIFEM and UNCDF, Belgium tries to concentrate on a limited number of themes it feels are essential for development, such as:
  • support to subsidiary administration and local development;
  • good governance, in particular the strengthening of parliaments and support of election processes; on March 14-15, 2007, Belgium will host an  "International Conference on Good Governance" in Brussels;
  • the fight against the abuse of children and women, particularly in post-conflict zones.
(The above is from the Belgium Mission Website)

LE PANTHEON DE LA GUERRE, The Largest Painting in the World



In a circular building on the Midway was a gigantic panorama of World War I painted upon a canvas 402 feet long and 45 feet high. "The Pantheon" building at A Century of Progress was especially constructed to house the painting. The painting was viewed from platforms at two levels, which accomodated 1,000 persons. The upper platform was an unobstructed circle over fifty feet in diameter, from which the whole circuit of the painting could be viewed. The lower platform formed a ring, with the outer surface about twenty feet nearer the canvas than that of the upper circle, and was at an angle that gave the spectator an eye-level view of the large foreground portraits in the painting.

It took 130 artists to create this monumental masterpiece. They worked upon it from October 1914 until after the Armistice. While the picture was being painted, Paris was being continuously bombarded.

Against a background of war-ravaged France and Belgium stood groups of more than 6,000 individuals. All the famous leaders of the Allied nations, the great heroes, and the martyrs were depicted. Twenty-eight nations were represented.

The painting was said to have cost $500,000 and it was presented at the fair under the sponsorship of Pershing Hall, the A.E.F. memorial building in Paris.

220 × 326 - newmiamiarch.org

Francis Dubois was born and raised in Alsace, France, and had a very distinguished career with the United Nations. He served as the Deputy Coordinator of the UN Secretary General in the Palestinian Territories, then posted to Iraq as the Head of the UN Office ( with the rank of Ambassador ), and subsequently in Algeria , and Tunisia in the same capacity.

Since his retirement, Francis Dubois is an active member of several  non-governmental organizations and serves on their boards. Presently, he is the  President of Le Comite La Fayette, in  New York, an organization that promotes French-American relations. Also, as a Paul Harris Fellow ,  he is a regular attendee of the monthly Breakfast meeting of the Rotary Club at the UN.




Thoughts and Pictures from the Philipines

 Todd Shea of Rotary Club of Inwood and Executive Director and Founder of Comprehensive Disaster Response Services sends us some photos updating us on his current mission with Jim Kushner to the Phillipines.  

Todd Shea
Member, Rotary Club of Inwood, Manhattan, NY
Executive Director and Founder
Comprehensive Disaster Response Services (CDRS)


Rotary District Governor Visits Rotaract Club of the United Nations

Rotary District Governor Visits Rotaract Club of the United Nations.  District Governor Matts visits the United Nations Rotaract Club.  Their meetings are held at the Ronald McDonald's House on East 73rd St.


Sul, Kyung-Hoon, Depurty UN Amabasador of Korea

Ambassador Sul entered the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in 1982. Since then, he has worked on a variety of multilateral issues related to economic and development cooperation, the United Nations, international economic organizations, disarmament and non-proliferation, and international law. He has assumed political, economic and consular posts in New York (1987-90), Iran (1994-1996), Geneva (1998-2001), and Kuwait (2004-2006). From 2006 to 2009, he was posted as Minister-Counsellor at the Korean Mission to the United Nations in New York. He served as Deputy Director-General for International Organizations in 2009 and as Director-General for Development Cooperation dealing with development assistance to developing countries from 2009 to 2011. He began his post as Deputy Permanent Representative to UN in August 2011.

Ambassador Sul received his Master of Arts in international political economy from the University of Virginia (1985). He received a Bachelor's degree in economics from Seoul National University (1981). In 2005, the Korean Government awarded him the red-stripe medal for distinguished officials.

(From the Mission Webiste) South Korea had a very special relationship with the United Nations from its establishment. The UN first recognized the Republic of Korea as the sole legitimate government in the Korean Peninsula through General Assembly resolution 195 in 1948. Then, in 1950, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution that deployed UN Forces to our land after the outbreak of the Korean War. In the wake of the devastation of war, the UN offered us key support to overcome the numerous reconstruction and developmental challenges. Indeed, the UN has played a significant role in shaping once a war-devastated country into one where democracy has taken root, economy is thriving, and human rights are protected.

In 1991, the Republic of Korea became a Member State of the UN. Since then, Korea has actively participated in UN activities and engaged in a variety of global issues such as economic development, human rights, international peace and security, and climate change. For instance, Korea first served as a non-permanent member of the Security Council in 1996, and since 2013, is now serving on the Council for a second time. Korea also held the Presidency of the General Assembly in 2001. Additionally, it has been active members in the Economic and Social Council, the Human Rights Council, the UN Women Executive Board, and other major bodies such as the Rio+20 Preparatory Committee. These active roles have stemmed from the desire of the Korean people to work toward peace and prosperity as a responsible member of the global community. We believe that the Member States of the UN recognized these efforts as they elected a Korean, Mr. Ban Ki-moon, as the Secretary-General of the UN in 2007.

Korea’s current foreign policy vision, entitled the “Era of Global Happiness,” represents our continued efforts towards realizing a better world. Since the inauguration of President Park Geun-hye in February of 2013, she and her administration have pursued this forward-thinking policy initiative to strengthen linkages between national growth and individual happiness, with Korea’s happiness and the larger happiness of our world. This vision resulted from the contemplation of how Korea came this far, how much help it received from the international community, and how we would meet increasingly pressing challenges of poverty, underdevelopment, and the polarization of wealth.

The Korean government wishes to utilize the UN as the primary forum of multilateralism in order to solve the various global challenges of today. As a member of the Security Council for 2013-2014, Korea will join others in tackling security issues that range from regional conflicts and peacekeeping, tothe protection of civilians in armed conflicts, especially women and children. Furthermore, Korea would like to contribute to discussing development agendas by sharing with others the lessons learned from our own experiences of rapid industrialization and democratization.


What is Integrity?, And a visit from Rotaractors

There are three Rotaract Clubs in Manhattan.  In this photo Moderator Josef Klee welcomes three Rotaractors from the Rotaract Club of Columbia University.  From left to right are Maya Selender (Ecuador), Lily Jumean (Dubai), Josef, and Theresa Schmidt (Germany).  Rotaracts have and Rotary Ambassadorial Scholars and UN interns have an open invition to our monthly breakfast meetings at no charge. They always add insight to our meetings.

Our featured speaker was: Mr. Christopher C. Gates, Banker, Actor, Peace Volunteer and a recent friend of our meetings.His topic was Interactive Conversation about INTEGRITY: An Access to Performance. In addition visiting Roarian, Mrs. Joan Sikand, Lawyer and Poet,  read a poem.

The meeting took place at the UN Church Center, 1st Ave/44th St., 10th floor



A Visit From Mr. Santa Clause, the well-known hero of children around the world.


On  Wednesday, December 18,  Mr. Santa Clause, the well-known hero of children around the world, will be visiting the Legendary Rotary Club of New York's Holiday party.   Mr. Clause, a year-round resident of the North Pole, is expected to thank our club for it's generosity with providing toys to the children of Manhattan over the years.  Santa, who has a long and impressive history of helping children, hopes to pick up about two-hundred toys from our club with the help of EREY and the RCNY Foundation.
As is customary, he asked that Rotarians bring a gift-wrapped toy for children over 12 years old. "While it is always difficult to get toys for children, it is particularly difficult to get enough toys for older children". he has advised.  For those Rotarians that cannot attend the December 18 Holiday Celebration please contact Andreas or Tom McConnon and they will purchase and gift wrap a $25 toy for you.  
The toys that Mr. Clause picks up from us will be given to the children that live near the Fraternities- Notre Dame Soup Kitchen on 1st Ave. and East 117th Street.   Ho, ho, ho!


Klaus Proempers, Director of German Television, Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen, ZDF, New York Office

Klaus Proempers, Director of German Television, Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen, ZDF, New York Office
His topic was" The status of the negotiations on the Iran Nuclear Program" and he also commented on the new German Government in the making.
Klaus Prömpers was born February 11, 1949 in Düsseldorf, and studied economics in Cologne Germany.

1976 – 79 Secretary General of Catholic youth organization. 1980 – 89 Moderator and Reporter Deutschlandfunk, Cologne, Germany. November 89 – August 1999 Reporter Bonn German TV Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen. September 1999 – February 2004 Brussels ZDF. March 2004 – June 2011 Vienna ZDF Balkans Bureau Chief.Since July 2011, New York ZDF Bureau Chief.

Also more than thirty Manahatan Rotaractors attendd this meeting from the Rotaract Clubs of the  United Nations, Columbia University and the newly formed Pace University

Also Raven Moore, author of the new book "Padre" spoke briefly and  her experiences and thoughts of her Peace Corps Service in Cote d'Ivoire in western Africa. 


Rotary Day at UN 2013. 1,500 Rotarians, Rotaract and Interact

Vocational Service Breakout Session
United Nations diplomats and officials gathered with 1,300 Rotary members on 2 November to discuss ways to engage youth activists, prevent disease, promote peace, and resolve conflict around the world.
Held annually at United Nations headquarters in New York City, Rotary-UN Day celebrates the enduring partnership between Rotary and the UN and their common goal of peace.
RI President Ron Burton opened the daylong event by heralding the two organizations’ worldwide impact.
“The collective efforts of Rotarians around the globe could have an impact at a real level on what happens here at the United Nations,” Burton said. “[We are] helping to make our world a much better place.”
Jan Eliasson, UN deputy secretary-general, echoed Burton’s sentiment, thanking Rotary not only for its ongoing work in the fight against polio but also for addressing other important issues, such as water and sanitation needs.
“The United Nations needs organizations that work together with us, that work horizontally. Rotary does this,” Eliasson said.

Zeroing in on social issues

New at this year’s event were sessions on topics such as youth innovation, peace and conflict resolution, disease prevention, clean water, and maternal and child health. Leaders in each area highlighted the discussions, which aimed to motivate participants to take action in their communities.
The recent polio cases in Syria were addressed during a panel discussion that emphasized the importance not only of eradicating polio in the final three countries, but also of responding to any outbreaks in countries where polio is no longer endemic.
Rotary Foundation Trustee Chair D.K. Lee said that although the Syria outbreak presents a new and significant challenge, Rotary has been successful in equally volatile countries in the past.
“We have been told many times that we cannot do it, that we will never do it. But we know better. We will conquer this challenge, as we have conquered so many before,” Lee said. “We will stop these new outbreaks. And we will continue to fight polio, until we have reached every last child.”
Noted speakers included Peter Crowley, director of Polio Team, UNICEF, Carlos Enrique García González, ambassador of El Salvador to the United Nations; Ambassador Dnyaneshwar M. Mulay, consul general of India; Rob Raylman, executive director of Gift of Life International; Patricia Shafer, Rotary Peace Fellow alumna; Sharon Tennison, founder of the Center for Citizen Initiatives; and Deepa Willingham, founder of PACE Universal.
Rotary News
Full House During The Panel Discussions


El Salvador at the UN. A New Gerneration

Our guest speaker at the October 2013 meeting was  Ambassador Ruben Hasbun. The Ambasaor who asked to be called "Ruben", first thanked The New York based, and Rotary supported Gift of Life Program.  Eleven beautiful Salvadoran children received the Gift of Life this week at Hospital Bloom in El Salvador thanks to there amazing medical teams and our wonderful sponsors: Rotary Club of Naples, Michael Grech Memorial Foundation, Digicel El Salvador, Rotary District 7190, Rotary Clubs of Latham, Delmar, Scotia, Schenectady, Rotterdam Sunrise, Glens Falls, Club Rotario Santa Tecla and the Rotary Foundation. 11 Lives Saved This Week in El Salvador (11 photos) 
Rubin is the Deputy Permanent Representative of El Salvador to the United Nations and before that post was Minister Counselor, in charge of human rights and social affairs> He also held the post of International Civil Society based in Tokyo, Japan for seven years were he earned his MA degree in International Politics at Aoyama University.   Rubin is fluent in Japanese and four other languages besides his native Spanish.

From the UN Website:  RUBÉN ARMANDO ESCALANTE HASBÚN  supported the fruitful work done on crime prevention and criminal justice, in particular towards the elimination of violence against migrants, migrant workers and their families, which was the subject of one of the resolutions currently before the Council.  Ecuador made that issue a priority and, therefore, was one of the sponsors of that text.  However, it felt that it could include other elements, such as the importance of a larger number of ratifications to the Convention on the Rights of Migrants and their Families.

On human rights, he also supported the presentation of the report of the Committee on Economic, Cultural and Social Rights, and hoped that the request for extra meeting time would be adopted by consensus.  The rights of older persons was an issue of growing importance, he said, and noted the upcoming Conference on Ageing in that respect.  As the report on that matter pointed out, the ageing of the population was one of the most important changes in global demographics in the twenty-first century.

Lastly, on the issue of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, he said that his delegation attached great importance on the resolution adopted this year by the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women on indigenous women.  El Salvador would continue to play an active role in the facilitation process of an inclusive draft resolution on the preparation of the 2014 World Conference on Indigenous Peoples.

Chemical Weapons Taboo - Virginia Gamba - Disarmament Affairs at the United Nations

Our guest speaker at the September 18 2013 meeting was Ms. Virginia Gamba and Director of the Office for Disarmament Affairs (left in photo). She holds an MSC in Strategic Studies from Aberystwyth University Wales and has worked as a technical advisor in the Americas, Africa and Europe and she is the author of forty publications on crisis prevention, and nuclear proliferation>  Her office oversees two multilateral conventions approaching universal membership that outlaw biological and chemical weapons.  These have helping to sustain a global taboo against the existence of such weapons.

"Hope for a future world without nuclear weapons" - Twenty years ago, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine renounced their nuclear arsenals


www.un.org - Office for Disarmament Affairs Director Virginia Gamba represented Secretary General Ban Ki-moon at the event. Two decades after having renounced their nuclear weapons arsenals, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine called upon the international community to redouble efforts towards eliminating all nuclear weapons. Abolishing all nuclear weapons is "the most ardent aspiration of mankind.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Rotary at NY Stock Exchange

Rotary District Governor for New York & Bermuda Matts Ingemanson (left), Rotary International President Ron Burton (right) and United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon (middle) visited the New York Stock Exchange on July 24, 2013 to commemorate that NYSE Euronext joined the United Nations' Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) initiative. This will explore how exchanges can work together with investors, regulators, and companies to enhance corporate transparency on Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG) issues and encourage responsible long-term approaches to investment.


UN Budget Chairman, Carlos G. Ruiz Massieu

The Speaker at the June 19, 2013 meetings was Mr. Carlos G. Ruiz Massieu, Representative of the Mission of Mexico to the United Nations. Mr. Massieu is the Chairman of the United Nations Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions which has complete oversight of all UN activities, including its political missions and peacekeeping operations worldwide.

He is the first Latin American to hold this position in the history of the United Nations
Mexican citizen Carlos Ruiz Massieu Aguirre was appointed chairman of the U.N.’s Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ) during the 67th UN General Assembly.
Mr. Ruiz Massieu assumed his new role on January 1, 2013, with the rank of Assistant Secretary General. This is the first time a Latin American has occupied that post.
The ACABQ is one of the most influential areas of the United Nations and is responsible for reviewing the budgets submitted by the UN Secretary General for peacekeeping operations and for the operation of the UN agencies and programs.
Carlos Ruiz Massieu’s appointment comes in recognition of his strong academic and professional background. He has extensive multilateral experience in development cooperation and administrative and budgetary matters. He is already working on the ACABQ, to which he was elected in 2011.
Carlos Ruiz Masssieu is a member of the Mexican Foreign Service and holds a law degree from the Iberoamericana University and a master’s degree in political science from the University of Essex. He has been posted to the Mexican embassy in Costa Rica and to the Permanent Mission of Mexico to the United Nations in New York.
The Foreign Ministry reaffirms its commitment to the objectives and work of the UN and is ready to continue working on improving the organization’s efficiency, effectiveness, transparency and accountability.


Taliban Renounces War on Anti-Polio Workers

Taliban renounces war on anti-polio workers from:
The Telegraph - Zubair Babakarkhail in Kabul and Dean Nelson in

New Delhi -3:02PM BST 13 May 2013

The Taliban has ended its war on polio vaccination workers and

admitted immunization is the only way to protect children from

the disease, its leadership said in a statement issued today.


The announcement comes just weeks after the Afghan government
launched a new campaign to immunise more than eight million
 children between six monthsand five years old throughout the
country. It said it had trained 46,000 volunteers to conduct the
 campaign which is funded by the American aid agency
 USAID, the World Health Organisation and Unicef.
Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria are the three remaining
 countries in the world where polio remains a serious threat,
 but efforts to eradicate the disease have been
 sabotaged by the Taliban and other Islamic militants who have
 assassinated immunisation volunteers in all three countries.
Eleven polio workers were killed in Pakistan last year,
 including five women who were shot dead in Karachi in December
 last year. Earlier this year a police officer protecting vaccination
 campaigners was shot by motorcycle gunmen in Khyber
 Pukhtunkhwa. In Afghanistan, a 16 year old girl involved
 in an anti-polio vaccination campaign in Kapisa province was shot
 six times in the stomach outside her home last December
and died later in hospital. In March this year the Afghan
 government was forced to abandon its polio vaccination
 campaign in Nuristan province where, it said, Taliban
opposition had made it impossible.

Opposition to the vaccination programme has been driven
 by conservative clerics who claim it is a plot to sterilise
 Muslim children, and Taliban commanders who fear
 it is being used to gather intelligence in their strongholds.
 Those fears increased following the 2011 killing of al-Qaeda
 leader Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad
where Pakistani doctor Shakil Afridi was arrested for running
 a fake hepatitis vaccination campaign to help the CIA collect
DNA samples of members of the bin Laden family.
But in a sudden U-turn the Taliban leadership issued a
 statement offering its support for polio eradication campaigns as
 long as foreigners were not involved and that all volunteers respected
 local Islamic culture. "According to the latest international medicine
 science, the polio disease can onlybe cured by preventive measures
 ie the anti-polio drops and the vaccination of children
 against this disease. "The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan supports
 and lends a hand to all those programs which works for the health
 care of the helpless people of our country," said a stament
 issued by the 'Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan'.
But it warned the World Health Organisation and Unicef to employ
 only "unbiased people"in a campaign "harmonised with the regional
 conditions, Islamic values and local cultural traditions."
It also ordered its fighters to give polio workers "all necessary support".
Mohammad Younas Fakor, an independent political analyst, said the
 move was aimed at boosting its popularity among Afghans as the
 withdrawal of foreign troops draws closer. "I think the Taliban looks
 towards 2014, and they know that they will not have any other
 option rather than coming to the political process," he said.

Volunteer and member of Rotary Community Corps Murdered in Pakistan

By Robert S. Scott, chair of Rotary’s International PolioPlus Committee
Abdul Waheed Khan, who headed the Site Town Polio Resource Center in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan, died tragically in an attack on 13 May that also wounded his daughter and brother.
Although not a Rotarian, Waheed, as he was known to friends, was a member of the Rotary Community Corps sponsored by the Rotary Club of Karachi. Due largely to his vision and leadership, the center not only provides immunization against polio and other diseases but also operates a school, a food program, and a vaccine storage facility.
I had the privilege of meeting Waheed a little over two months ago during a visit to the polio resource center. He briefed me on the center’s achievements, including its success in immunizing children who would otherwise be missed and changing the minds of parents who initially refuse to let their children be vaccinated.
Aziz Memon, chair of the Pakistan National PolioPlus Committee, called Waheed “a committed, multitalented individual who devoted his time and energy towards the eradication of polio, mobilizing the community, and improving the quality of life in the surrounding areas.”
On behalf of Rotary, I extend our deepest sympathy to Mr. Waheed’s family and friends, including the many Rotarians who knew him. His dedication and sacrifice further inspire us to continue pursuing our goal of a polio-free world.


Rotary's Polio-Plus Volunteers Attacked in Pakistan.

 A women volunteer in Rotary's Polio Plus vaccination campaign was killed, and another wounded in an attack near Peshawar, Pakistan on Tuesday, May 28,2013.  The volunteers were going door-to door dispensing the oral anti-polio drops to children when two gunmen opened fire. This type of violence has usually been attributed to the Pakistani Taliban who consider Polio vaccination efforts as a Muslim sterilization plan, according to the deputy city commisioner of Peshawar. There was also an attack in northwestern Pakistan last week on volunteers, and the soldier protecting the volunteer team was killed. There are 682 teams in Pakistan this week with the aim to vaccinate more than 220,000 children.

(From the New York Times, December 2012) This has happened with increasing frequency in Pakistan over the past year. A concerted immunization drive, involving up to 225,000 vaccination workers, drove the number of newly infected polio victims down to 52.   Donors like the Bill and Melinda Gates  Foundation, the United Nations, and Rotary, and at the national level, President Asif Ali Zardari and his daughter Aseefa,  have made polio eradication a “personal mission.”
In December of 2012 in  Pakistan, The United Nations suspended its polio vaccination drive in Pakistan after eight people involved in the effort were shot dead in the past two days, a U.N. official said.
The suspension was a grave blow to the drive to bring an end to the scourge of polio in Pakistan, one of only three countries where the crippling disease still survives.
 The gunmen shot at a woman working on the campaign in northwest Pakistan, killing her and her driver, one of five attacks during the day on polio workers. A male polio immunization worker was critically wounded in one of the shootings.
During that week, six other people have been killed who were working on the immunization program, which has been jointly conducted with the Pakistani government. No one claimed responsibility, but some Islamic extremists charge that the program is a cover for espionage.
At the U.N., Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned the killing as "cruel, senseless and inexcusable." He said the eight workers were among thousands across Pakistan "working selflessly to achieve the historic goal of polio eradication."
Sarah Crowe, spokeswoman for UNICEF, said the vaccination program has been suspended everywhere in Pakistan until an investigation by the Pakistani government is completed.
"This is undoubtedly a tragic setback, but the campaign to eradicate polio will and must continue," she said.