News in Brief 31 July 2015 (PM)

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Ban Ki-moon. UN Photo.

UN chief condemns "murder" of Palestinian child

The perpetrators behind an arson attack in the West Bank which killed a Palestinian child and severely wounded his family must promptly be brought to justice, the UN Secretary-General has said.

Ban Ki-moon condemned what he characterized as the "murder" of Ali Dawbsha who burned to death when masked assailants threw firebombs into his home.

Stephane Dujarric is spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General.

"The absence of a political process and Israel’s illegal settlement policy, as well as the harsh and unnecessary practice of demolishing Palestinian houses, have given rise to violent extremism on both sides. This presents a further threat to the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people and to the security of the people of Israel."

The UN chief urged both sides in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to take "bold steps" to return to the path of peace.

US $65 million contribution saves WFP programme for Syrian refugees

A "timely contribution" of US$65 million from the United States will allow the World Food Programme (WFP) to continue providing food assistance to nearly a half a million Syrian refugees in Jordan.

The agency had been faced with the possibility of suspending its food voucher programme for refugees living outside of camps.

While welcoming the donation, WFP encouraged other countries to "step up to the plate" as it fears the situation will repeat in a matter of months.

US ratifies amendment on nuclear security

The ratification of a key nuclear security amendment by the United States has been welcomed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The Amendment to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material urges countries to protect nuclear facilities.

It also provides for more international cooperation on locating and recovering stolen or smuggled nuclear material, among other points.

Yukiya Amano, head of the IAEA, the UN nuclear agency, described the amendment as "the single most important step the international community can take to strengthen nuclear security globally."

The amendment will enter into force when 14 more countries adhere to it.

Siobhán Garside, United Nations

Duration: 2’07″


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