Climate change is a global health catastrophe

Ricardo Lagos addresses the GCAS summit

Climate change poses a catastrophic threat to our planet's biodiversity, to the integrity of our economic system, and even to the very values on which our shared humanity is built. 

As the new Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report shows, this threat is very real, and we are losing the battle to keep temperature increases close to the Paris Climate Agreement target of 1.5°c.

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Mary Robinson outlines priorities in her new role as Chair of The Elders

The Elders at their November 2018 Board Meeting in London.

It is an honour to write to you for the first time in my new capacity as Chair of The Elders.

I have been a proud member of this group since we were first brought together by Nelson Mandela in 2007.

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The Elders call on UN Security Council to take urgent, credible action to lift Yemen blockade

The Elders today called on the United Nations Security Council to take urgent action to bring an end to the blockade of Yemen and avert a worsening humanitarian catastrophe.

They particularly urged the United Kingdom, the United States and France, as the three major powers backing the Saudi-led coalition forces in Yemen and as Permanent Members of the Council, to prioritise saving civilian lives.

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Decisive action from Russia, Iran and Turkey required to avoid needless deaths in Idlib siege, Elders warn

Fearing an imminent large-scale offensive, The Elders strongly urge Iran, Russia and Turkey to overcome recent differences and work together to prevent heavy civilian casualties in Syria’s Idlib region.


The Elders strongly urge the three guarantors of the “Astana Process” – Iran, Russia and Turkey – to overcome their recent differences and work hand-in-hand to prevent heavy civilian casualties in Syria’s Idlib region. A large-scale offensive there appears imminent.

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Myths and Fantasies about the Palestinian Refugees and the United Nations

In this guest blog, Andrew Whitley, former senior UNRWA official and Policy Director at The Elders from 2011-16, examines the likely impacts of the recent US decision to halt funding to the UN agency responsible for Palestinian refugees.

UNRWA distributes aid in Gaza in 2013 (Credit: UNRWA / Shareef Sarhan)

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The Elders urge US to recommit funding for UN Palestinian refugees agency

The Elders urge the United States to recommit funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) to prevent a drastic cut in its essential services such as healthcare and education to those in need across the Middle East.

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The Elders urge member states to take action at UN to prevent mass atrocities

The Elders have urged the governments of 31 countries to do more in the face of mass atrocities, by signing a UN Code of Conduct committing them not to obstruct credible Security Council resolutions designed to halt or prevent these acts.

"On too many occasions the UN Security Council has stood by and failed to take effective action" - Kofi Annan
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Ban Ki-moon: A decisive UNSC is needed now more than ever

Addressing the UN Security Council on 21 February, Ban Ki-moon called on members to swap rhetoric for action to ensure it delivers on its mandate to maintain international peace and security.

"The primary responsibilities vested in the Security Council to maintain international peace and security are needed now more than ever."
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The Elders urge Bulgaria to use EU Presidency for greater action on refugee resettlement

The Elders have urged Bulgaria to use its tenure to push for greater action and ambition on refugee resettlement through developing a strong Union Resettlement Framework.

“A strong Framework developed under your leadership would send a signal to the rest of the world that Europe is leading in tackling this global challenge and does not stand idly by while people fleeing war and persecution suffer.” - Kofi Annan
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The Elders call for urgent action on political and humanitarian crises in DR Congo

Condemning decades of failure, The Elders call for immediate and concerted action to provide relief and protect rights of the people of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

"The people of the Democratic Republic of Congo have been consistently ill-served by their leaders for decades while the international community has failed to respond effectively to protect their rights." – Kofi Annan
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