United Nations Security Council: South China Sea
On January 22, 2018, after months of US Congress-led investigations on US-China trade practices, US President Donald Trump imposed the first tariffs on Chinese goods imported into the United States. Subsequently, China retaliated with its own tariffs in April, marking the beginning of a trade war between the world’s largest economies. Other political issues have long plagued the two superpowers and these trade tensions have exacerbated long standing disputes between China and the US. The most relevant consideration include the competing claims for the right to patrol the South China Sea. This strategic region is rich in natural resources, contains territorial claims from ten different nations, and facilitates one third of the world’s shipping traffic. Due to the recent increase in commercial tensions, the increased presence of American and Chinese vessels in the region have sparked debates concerning the presence of foreign militaries in the Strait of Taiwan and its implications as an infringement on China’s sovereignty. The UNSC must find a way to peacefully de-escalate tensions in the region while preserving the key interests of all parties involved.
Francophone Committee: Le Cabinet de Gouvernement du Président François Mitterrand
From 1988 to 1995, French President François Mitterrand held his second term in office. These seven years were marked by great changes in the international stage, such as the Fall of the Berlin Wall and the Dissolution of the Soviet Union, the Rwandan Genocide and the formation of the European Union. In all of these, Mitterrand’s government had to adapt and respond to the ongoing changes and decide what role France would play in these international matters. In the domestic sphere, Mitterand oversaw four Prime Ministers in his government, the implementation of several new policies and even corruption scandals. As part of the President’s government cabinet, delegates in this committee will help the president by both advising him and taking action to face each new challenge. In this committee, delegates will debate their differing views on how France and their administration should react to these events in order to come up with the best advice to give the President and relay the French Government’s position to its people and the world.
De 1988 à 1995, le président français François Mitterrand a exercé son deuxième mandat. Ces sept années ont été marquées par de grands changements sur la scène internationale, tels que la chute du mur de Berlin, la dissolution de l'Union soviétique, le génocide rwandais et la formation de l'Union européenne. Dans tous ces domaines, le gouvernement de Mitterrand a dû s’adapter, réagir aux changements en cours et décider quel rôle la France jouerait dans ces affaires internationales. Dans la sphère domestique, le deuxième septennat a rendu place pour les mandats de quatre premiers ministres, la mise en oeuvre de plusieurs nouvelles politiques et même des scandales de corruption. En tant que membres du cabinet du président, les membres de ce comité devront l’aider en le conseillant et en prenant des mesures pour faire face à chaque nouveau défi. Au cours de la conférence, les délégués débattront de leurs points de vue divergents sur la manière dont la France et son administration devraient réagir à ces événements afin de formuler et proposer les meilleurs conseils au président et faire connaître la position du gouvernement français à sa population et au monde.
British House of Commons 2020: International Trade Select Committee
The International Trade Select Committee of the British House of Commons is responsible for drafting and reviewing bills that the House of Commons entertains on matters of International Trade, as well as conducting research and advising the House of Commons in this topic. However, in this February 2020 Post-Brexit scenario, this committee has been enlarged and gained new powers in order to deal with the trade and economic problems that have sprouted from leaving the European Union. British firms need to find new suppliers of their raw materials and new markets to sell their products abroad; commercial ties with several European countries have yet to be fully reëstablished, but there is also a much greater opportunity to diversify Britain’s trade partners. Delegates in this committee will work on drafting and reviewing the bills that could solve Britain’s international trade grievances while taking advantage of the political manoeuvres in the House of Commons to further their goals.
International Court of Justice
Located in The Hague, Netherlands, The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is the United Nations’ main body responsible for resolving international judicial disputes between states and state-organisations. The structure and procedure of this committee will aim to mimic that of the real ICJ; delegates will play the role of judges who caucus, interpret and pass judgement on a case presented by NAMUN staff. The case will be presented by the dais, who will help delegates with the procedure, while other members of the NAMUN staff will play the role of advocates and witnesses, presenting each parties’ arguments and evidence and aiding in the committee’s progression.
This year, the committee will entertain the 2010 contentious case of Whaling in the Antarctic (Australia v. Japan: New Zealand Intervening) in which Australia accused Japan of allegedly violating the 1946 International Convention on the Regulation of Whaling by using a scientific research programme, JARPA II, as a guise to engage in commercial whaling activities in the Southern Ocean. In 2012, New Zealand intervened to provide clarification and aid in interpreting the articles of said Convention. While the topic might seem narrow and technical, its themes are broad and its implications affect areas as different as economics, ecology, sustainability, science and ethics, and the case in questions serves as an excellent example of solving an international dispute.