News in Brief 20 April 2015 (AM)

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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe (file photo)

Killing of Ethiopians in Libya condemned by UN chief

The killing of a number of Ethiopian nationals by individuals affiliated with Da'esh or ISIL terrorists in Libya has been described as "barbaric" by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

The terrorists have released a video showing one group of Ethiopian Christians being shot and the other being beheaded in two locations in Libya.

Ban Ki-moon said he utterly deplores the targeting of people on the basis of their religious affiliation and expressed his condolences to the families of those killed as well as to the government of Ethiopia.

He reaffirmed that the ongoing United Nations affiliated dialogue is the best chance for Libyans to overcome the crisis in their country.

Coordinated action urged to safeguard migrants in Mediterranean Sea

Governments have been urged to coordinate their actions to safeguard migrants who risk their lives to cross the Mediterranean Sea.

The appeal has been made by the head of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Koji Sekimizu, following the most recent deaths of migrants who reportedly drowned within sight of a potential rescue ship.

He said the deaths of hundreds of migrants once again highlighted the need for urgent action to be taken against what he called "unscrupulous criminals".

Mr Sekimizu said the smugglers' greed and lack of respect for human life allow them to cram hundreds of innocent, desperate people into unsuitable craft with no concern for their safety.

Thousands of cyclone-affected children in Vanuatu receive birth certificates

Communities in Vanuatu are being urged by the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) to ensure birth registration for all children on the Pacific island.

A campaign has been launched by UNICEF and the government of Vanuatu to issue new birth certificates to thousands of children affected by Cyclone Pam which hit the island nation recently.

Approximately 500 children are expected to have their births registered for the first time while close to 6, 500 will be re-issued with new certificates during the campaign.

Stephanie Coutrix, United Nations.

Duration: 1’58″

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