News in Brief 26 March 2015 (AM)

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House demolished in Gaza following Israeli airstrike in 2012. Photo: OCHA/M. El Halabi (file)

2014 a devastating year for Palestinians in occupied territory

Palestinian civilians continue be subjected to threats to their life, physical safety and liberty, according to a report released by the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs on Thursday.

Entitled, "Fragmented Lives", the report says 2014 witnessed the highest civilian death toll since 1967.

It points out that hostilities between Hamas and the Israeli army killed 1, 500 Palestinians, including more than 550 children and left about 100,000 residents without a home.

In the West Bank including East Jerusalem, it adds, more than 1, 200 Palestinians were displaced due to home demolitions by Israeli authorities.

Increase of Peacekeepers in Central African Republic authorized

The Security Council has authorized an increase of peacekeepers in the UN Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA).

An additional 750 military personnel, 280 police personnel and 20 corrections officers will join MINUSCA.

The mission currently has a total authorized strength of almost 12,000 military and police officers.

MINUSCA took over from an African led support mission in the country which has been mired in sectarian violence between Christian and Muslim militias for the past two years.

UN peacekeepers in DR Congo to be reduced

A recommendation by the UN Secretary-General to reduce the number of UN peacekeepers in the Democratic Republic of the Congo by 2, 000 has been   endorsed by the Security Council.

On Thursday the Council unanimously adopted a resolution which extended the mandate of the UN Mission in the country (MONUSCO) until 31 March 2016.

MONUSCO's mandate includes the protection of civilians and assisting the government to combat armed groups in the country.

Cathrine Hasselberg United Nations

Duration: 1’56″

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