News in Brief 18 August 2015 (PM)

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Israeli authorities demolished this residential structure in the Palestinian community of Al Jiftlik Abu Al Ajaj in Area C of the Occupied West Bank in April 2015. Photo: OCHA (file)

Demolitions by Israel in Palestinian refugee communities of "grave concern"

Demolitions by the Israeli Civil Administration in vulnerable Palestinian Bedouin refugee communities have been described as of grave concern by top UN officials.

A total of 22 structures were reportedly demolished in four communities, displacing 78 Palestinians, including 49 children.

According to UN records, this is the largest number of Palestinians displaced in the West Bank in one day in nearly three years.

UN chief looks forward to President Kiir's endorsement of peace agreement

The signing of a so-called "compromise peace agreement" by former South Sudanese Vice-President Riek Machar and former political detainees has been welcomed by the UN Secretary-General.

The peace agreement aims to end the conflict raging in the country for the past 20 months.

In a statement, Ban Ki-moon said he takes note that the President of the country, Salva Kiir, initialled a copy of the agreement with some reservations.

He expressed his strong hope that President Kiir will sign the agreement by the end of the 15-day deadline.

UN chief concerned by escalation of violence between India and Pakistan

Serious concern has been expressed by the UN Secretary-General regarding the recent escalation of violence along the Line of Control between India and Pakistan.

This has reportedly resulted in a number of casualties on both sides, including civilians.

In a statement, Ban Ki-moon called upon the governments of India and Pakistan to exercise maximum restraint and take all feasible steps to ensure the protection of civilians.

The UN has had a military observer group in the area called UNMOGIP since 1949.

US$6.3 million allocated to DPRK's drought response

A total of US$6.3 million has been allocated by the UN's Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) for the drought response in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

A long period of abnormally dry weather affecting the country has reportedly resulted in drought, impacting agricultural production, reducing access to water and leading to a deterioration of health, nutrition and sanitary conditions.

Stephanie Coutrix, United Nations.

Duration: 2’05″

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