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Yearbook of the United Nations 2014

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With its comprehensive coverage of political and security matters, human rights issues, economic and social questions, legal issues, and administrative and budgetary matters, the Yearbook of the United Nations stands as the authoritative reference work on the annual activities and concerns of the Organization. Fully indexed, the Yearbook includes all major General Assembly, Security Council and Economic and Social Council resolutions and decisions, uniquely placing them in a narrative context of United Nations consideration, deliberation and action. This sixty-eighth volume presents the work of the United Nations in dealing with recurring conflicts with severe humanitarian consequences including in the Syrian Arab Republic, where more than 12 million people were in need of basic food, clothing and shelter. The volume also highlights the Organization’s rapid response to an escalatory global health emergency—the Ebola virus disease outbreak across West Africa. It documents the Organization’s coordination of policy discussions to finalize a global sustainable development agenda, with the security of future generations as the core concern; and its efforts to rebuild societies emerging from conflict while keeping the fragile peace in other places. It further details the entry into force of the landmark Arms Trade Treaty, the missile downing of a passenger airliner in the midst of a geopolitical crisis in eastern Ukraine, and securing international human rights and humanitarian law and prosecuting abusers.

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United Nations financing and programming

During 2014, the financial situation of the United Nations was generally sound. Assessments for the regular budget reflected a slight increase, $6 million more than in 2013, while levels for peacekeeping operations and the international tribunals decreased. There were no new assessments issued for the capital master plan in 2014. By year’s end, unpaid assessments were lower than at the end of 2013 in all categories, except the regular budget, despite the reduction of those assessments from $1 billion to $535 million during the last quarter. For peacekeeping operations, unpaid assessments amounted to $1.3 billion, a decrease of $916 million compared to the previous year. Cash balances were positive for peacekeeping operations and the tribunals, while a cash shortfall of $81 million for the regular budget was covered by the Working Capital Fund. Debt owed to Member States for troops, formed police units and contingent-owned equipment totalled $779 millions. At the end of 2014, a total of 144 Member States had paid their regular budget assessments in full—two less than the number in 2013.

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