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Good morning, this is Michelle and this week we’re keeping an eye on UN talks for a treaty to police big business on human rights abuses – after seven years, states are finally ready for some text-based discussions.

We’re also awaiting the latest advice from the WHO on pandemics. Plus, the G20 club of wealthy countries will meet in Rome, but will they overcome their divergences before COP26?

photo journaliste

Michelle Langrand


On our radar this week

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Activists demonstrate in Geneva during UN discussions for a binding treaty on human rights abuses by corporations. (Credit: Victor Barro/Friends of the Earth International)

📜 Treaty talks to regulate big business resume at UN. Countries are meeting from Monday through Friday at Palais des Nations to negotiate a new global agreement to hold transnational corporations accountable for human rights abuses. The US, which had boycotted the negotiations until now, is said to be joining the meetings.

Geneva Solutions (EN)

⚕️ WHO’s Emergency Committee for Covid-19 is expected to issue its latest recommendations on the pandemic today after holding its ninth meeting since the beginning of the outbreak on Friday. Composed of 19 independent experts, the committee meets every three months and reviews its guidance on managing Covid-19 infections and on issues such as international travel. Up until now, it has maintained its stance that proof of vaccination should not be required.


🇮🇹 G20 gathering in Rome to set tone for UN climate talks. Rich countries meeting on Saturday, one day ahead of COP26, don’t see eye to eye on key issues. Sources say the powerful group is divided over phasing out coal, the dirtiest of carbon emitting fossil fuels. The news comes a few days after it was revealed that countries tried to modify a key climate UN report in their favour.

Reuters (EN)

Here's what else is happening

Dispatches from women in Afghanistan

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A view of a deserted class room of a girls school on 21 August following the Taliban takeover. (Credit: Keystone/EPA/Stringer)

🏫 Afghan girls ask ‘when can we come back to school?’ More than two months have passed since teenage girls last attended secondary school in Afghanistan and for many confined at home, the new reality under the Taliban is taking its toll, as one headteacher of a school in Kabul tells Geneva Solutions reporter and Afghan national Neda Safi. “Every day, students call me. Some of them come to school to see me and I see despair on their woeful faces. They have only one question: ‘When can we come back to school?’ Her comments come as global leaders ratchet up the pressure on the country’s militant leaders to keep their promises and fulfill their obligations on the human rights of women and girls.

Geneva Solutions (EN)

Also on the agenda

📌 25 October | From risk to resilience: Accelerating adaptation action at Cop26. The British and French ambassadors in Geneva will join WMO chief and other international organisation leaders to discuss what is needed from Glasgow to protect the most vulnerable to climate impacts.


📌 24-26 October | World Health Summit. Sponsored by the WHO, the three-day event, which is taking place online and in Berlin, will call for a strengthening of global health, scaling up equitable access to life-saving health tools, including vaccines and promoting health for all.


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