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Peter Yeo
As President of the Better World Campaign and Vice President for Public Policy and Advocacy at the United Nations Foundation, Peter Yeo leads the Foundation’s strategic engagement with Congress and the Administration to advance policy changes that support the UN’s work for global progress.

Under Yeo’s leadership, the Foundation has helped ensure multibillion dollar payments from the U.S. government to the UN; forged a strategic alliance with the United Nations Association of the USA to create the largest network of UN supporters across the U.S.; championed U.S. law standing against child marriage with the support of Girl Up; and advanced year-over-year increases in U.S. bilateral and multilateral global health spending.

Yeo joined the United Nations Foundation and the Better World Campaign in 2009 with over twenty years of legislative, analytical, and management experience, including senior roles on Capitol Hill and in the State Department. Prior to arriving at UNF, Yeo served for ten years as the Deputy Staff Director at the House Foreign Affairs Committee chaired by Rep. Tom Lantos (D-CA) and Rep. Howard Berman (D-CA). He has worked on a broad range of foreign policy and foreign aid issues. On behalf of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Democrats, he led the successful negotiations for the landmark HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Act of 2003, commonly known as PEPFAR, as well as the successful $50 billion reauthorization of the law in 2008.

He also shepherded into law several measures dealing with China, Tibet, Burma, and East Timor. Prior to his work with the Committee, he served as a Deputy Assistant Secretary at the U.S. State Department during the second Clinton Administration, where he led the negotiations around repayment of the U.S. arrears to the United Nations and was part of the U.S. delegation to the climate negotiations in Kyoto. Yeo holds a BA in East Asian Studies from Wesleyan University as well as a MA in East Asian Studies from Harvard University. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a leading independent nonpartisan foreign policy think tank, and a Board Member of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition.

Entries by Peter Yeo

Mali Terror Threat Runs Deep

(0) Comments | Posted November 20, 2015 | 12:03 PM

Friday's hostage crisis in Bamako has launched Mali back onto front pages and social media feeds. Unfortunately, the crisis runs deeper and farther than the today's tragic assault.

The attack is sadly part of an escalating pattern. United Nations peacekeeping troops in the nation have regularly been the target...

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POLL: Voters Support Foreign Policy Approach That Prioritizes Diplomacy

(0) Comments | Posted October 23, 2015 | 5:22 PM

As Americans begin to consider the candidates for 2016, they have already made a clear decision about how the right leader will approach the world.

A new poll conducted by a bipartisan research team and released today by the Better World Campaign finds that registered voters favor a foreign policy...

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U.S. Wise to Double Down on Peacekeeping Efforts

(0) Comments | Posted September 28, 2015 | 5:04 PM

The U.S. made strategic new investments in global security while chairing a United Nations peacekeeping summit today. Standing before more than 50 world leaders who had been asked to make their own new commitments to peacekeeping, President Obama announced the U.S. would enhance troop commitments, training, and logistical support, as...

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To Keep Pace With Peacekeeping, US Must Show Leadership

(0) Comments | Posted September 25, 2015 | 12:20 PM

General Martin Dempsey hit it on the head this summer when -- for the sake of global security -- he called for our allies to bolster United Nations peacekeeping. "The complex array of threats and, let's call it geopolitical jockeying, requires all of us to contend with an unpredictable landscape,...

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Nuclear Iran: Five Reasons Why the IAEA Is Up to the Task

(10) Comments | Posted July 19, 2015 | 9:13 PM

With a nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5+1 in place, both supporters and opponents can agree there is a key lynchpin to its successful implementation: the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Before any sanctions can be lifted, the very large job of monitoring Iran's compliance falls to the...

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Protect the Future of Peacekeeping

(2) Comments | Posted November 4, 2014 | 8:45 AM

On a Friday in early October -- amid a flood of news on ISIL and an escalating Ebola crisis -- it might have been easy to miss this headline: Nine United Nations Peacekeepers were ambushed and killed by gunmen in Mali. Less than a week later, another Peacekeeper in Mali...

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Progress in Haiti: A Period of Rebuilding, Training and Transition

(4) Comments | Posted October 30, 2014 | 5:30 PM

Flying at 39,000 feet on my return home from Haiti, I finally had a few moments to think about what I saw and heard over the past few days in the country.

Certainly I was struck by what has changed on the surface in the three years since my...

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On Eve of President's ISIL Speech, What Is the UN Doing?

(0) Comments | Posted September 10, 2014 | 4:39 PM

Questions abound as President Obama prepares to address the nation tonight on a strategy to combat the terrorist group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). One of them can be addressed right now.

That is: Will the U.S. be alone in its efforts to...

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Iran Nuclear Deal Is Another Win for Diplomacy

(0) Comments | Posted November 26, 2013 | 9:05 AM

Critics of the interim agreement on Iran's nuclear programs make a point -- the steps outlined by global leaders this weekend are but one portion of the actions demanded by the United Nations Security Council. Nonetheless, the fact remains that diplomats fundamentally must begin someplace. Over time, the doors that...

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In Losing UNESCO Vote, U.S. Punishes Own Citizens

(2) Comments | Posted November 8, 2013 | 1:01 PM

Sweeping prisoner executions have kept Iraq prominently placed in national headlines for the past several months. However, one story behind Iraq's struggling judicial system--though quieter and less gruesome--also demands attention.

As the United Nations' leading entity for the promotion of education, science, and culture,...

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The 5 biggest moments from UN Week

(0) Comments | Posted October 1, 2013 | 6:08 PM

Last week was a busy – and critical – week for the U.S. and the United Nations, as the 68th UN General Assembly convened to tackle global problems, from the Syria chemical weapons crisis to climate change.

In case you missed any of the action in...

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UN Remains Right Vehicle to Navigate Next Steps in Syria

(2) Comments | Posted September 17, 2013 | 12:58 PM

With new options on the table to address Syria's chemical weapons crisis, one of our oldest and most relevant foreign policy assets comes properly back into focus: the United Nations.

Since last week's marked shift in strategy, President Obama has agreed to back a diplomatic effort through the UN to...

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Power Hour on Capitol Hill: The Top 5 Quotes You Missed at the Senate Nomination Hearing for UN Ambassador

(0) Comments | Posted July 18, 2013 | 12:21 PM

Yesterday's Senate nomination hearing of Samantha Power as the Obama Administration's nominee to U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations was one of the most important stories in Washington this week. Confirmation seems likely, and if her testimony was any indication, the Unites States is in for continued strong representation on...

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Amid Pain, Opportunities to Help Syrian Refugees via the UN

(0) Comments | Posted June 20, 2013 | 12:56 PM

"We can't know your pain." These are the words from Angelina Jolie, Special Envoy to UNHCR, the United Nations' refugee agency, spoken this week to families who have fled Syria.

How distressingly true they are. Today -- on World Refugee Day -- the pain of...

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UNESCO's fight to promote a truly American value globally: Freedom of speech

(1) Comments | Posted May 3, 2013 | 11:40 AM

Every year on this day, May 3, the international community comes together for World Press Freedom Day. For those of us here in the United States, it's a day to not only celebrate our constitutionally-protected freedom of speech, but more importantly, to stand up and demand it for all.


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Twenty million reasons to keep up momentum on global immunizations

(0) Comments | Posted April 24, 2013 | 2:29 PM

In the past two decades, immunization efforts have averted an estimated 20 million deaths globally. Yet, for all the progress that has been made--thanks largely to a sustained investment from the United States, the United Nations, other governments, and private partnerships--a great need remains. Last year, well over 20 million...

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Amid Nuclear Threats, UN Provides Platform to Advance U.S.-China Relations

(0) Comments | Posted March 14, 2013 | 2:59 PM

In the wake of newly-passed UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea, Pyongyang has issued a new batch of heated rhetoric nearly every day. But beyond the threats--directed largely at the U.S. and South Korea--something equally headline-worthy is transpiring.

Through what has undoubtedly been a tireless effort, the United...

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2012's Sleeper Story: Success in Timor-Leste

(2) Comments | Posted January 2, 2013 | 2:14 PM

I was standing outside a Timorese refugee camp on the day Carlos Caceres pulled me aside with a frightening message - "The militias know who I am and where they can find me." I was shocked by what this United Nations worker had told me--at the time a participant of...

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The Final Debate: How the Candidates Win on Foreign Policy

(1) Comments | Posted October 19, 2012 | 12:52 PM

The 'who won' analysis of Tuesday's presidential debate may very well continue until the candidates approach the podium again this coming Monday night. Yet while the town hall provided no shortage of important material to consider, Americans are still awaiting a robust conversation on foreign policy. In fact,

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Carrying The Torch For Peace

(0) Comments | Posted July 27, 2012 | 4:19 PM

As over 10,000 of the world's greatest athletes convene in London for the 2012 Olympic Games, three truly stand out. It is not their athletic ability, their hours in training, or their love of competition that makes their stories unique -- though certainly they shine in those categories, too. Rather,...

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