News in Brief 05 August 2015 (PM)

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Special Representative and head of the UN peacekeeping mission, known as MINUSCA, Babacar Gaye (left) encourages ex-combatants to join the road to peace in the Central African Republic (CAR). Photo: MINUSCA

CAR displaced returning home

An improvement in the overall security situation in the Central African Republic (CAR), has allowed internally displaced people to return home and economic activity to recover.

That's according to the top UN envoy in the country, Babacar Gaye, who has been briefing the Security Council.

CAR has been mired in sectarian violence between Muslim and Christian militias for the past two years.

Mr Gaye said that many parts of the country are still targeted by armed groups.

Reconciliation given boost in Sri Lanka

A range of initiatives to boost reconciliation between former foes in Sri Lanka is being discussed by the UN and the government of the country.

Sri Lanka is recovering from a civil war between government forces and Tamil Tiger rebels which ended in 2009.

Here's the UN Spokesperson, Stéphane Dujarric.

"What is being discussed for support by the Peacebuilding Fund are initiatives to advance the process of reconciliation in Sri Lanka through the resettlement of internally displaced persons, national reconciliation, and the development of credible transitional justice mechanisms in line with international standards."

US$1 million has already been disbursed from the fund to support resettlement and integration initiatives in the north and east of the country for people displaced by the conflict.

Europe lags behind in breastfeeding

Almost half the number of children in Europe are breastfed compared to South East Asia, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Figures for 2006 to 2012 show an estimated 25 per cent of infants were exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months in Europe compared with 43 per cent in South-East Asia.

Marking World Breastfeeding Week, WHO said there were a number of factors contributing to the low rate.

They include poverty, difficulties in accessing health services, social marginalization, workplace issues and the marketing of breastmilk substitutes.

Daniel Dickinson, United Nations.

Duration: 2’07″

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