News in Brief 21 August 2015 (AM)

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The Security Council decided to extend the present mandate of UNIFIL for one year, until 31 August 2016. Photo: UNIFIL

UN peacekeeping force in Lebanon extended for another year

The United Nations Security Council voted unanimously on Friday to extend the UN's peacekeeping force in Lebanon for another year.

Members of the council agreed that the situation in the Middle Eastern country continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security.

The peacekeeping force, which was first established in 1978, is tasked with ensuring that the area between the so-called Blue Line separating Israel and Lebanon and the Litani River is free of unauthorized weapons and personnel.

Jump in typhoid cases among Palestinian refugees from Syria's Yarmouk camp

Twenty-three cases of typhoid among the civilian population from Syria's Yarmouk refugee camp have been identified in the neighbouring Yalda district by the UN relief agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA.

That's more than a threefold increase in the number of cases first identified on 18 August.

As heat continues to affect Damascus with temperatures topping 41 degrees Celsius, UNRWA says the risk of epidemics is extremely worrying in Yarmouk, Yalda and other adjacent areas.

Adoption of a new anti-slavery law in Mauritania welcomed

The adoption of a new anti-slavery law in Mauritania that doubles the maximum prison sentence for the crime from 10 to 20 years has been applauded by the UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery.

The law also creates special tribunals for the prosecution of slavery and slavery-like practices.

The UN expert stressed that slavery can be eradicated only if the existing laws and policies are implemented effectively.

Meanwhile, the global community on Sunday is marking the International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and Its Abolition.

Stephanie Coutrix, United Nations.

Duration: 1’47″

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