News in Brief 23 December 2015 (AM)

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Photo: UNESCO

UN disaster risk chief welcomes World Tsunami Awareness Day

The decision by the UN General Assembly to recognize a day that promotes public awareness about tsunamis will help focus attention on ways to reduce both natural and man-made hazards.

That's the assessment of the head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Margareta Wahlström.

The General Assembly on Tuesday adopted a resolution establishing 5 November as World Tsunami Awareness Day.

In a statement welcoming the news, Ms Wahlström said raising public awareness about disasters will help save lives and livelihoods.

She recalled that the deadly 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, which killed more than 200,000 people, galvanized political commitment to reducing disaster risk and losses.

Arab states urged to plan for sustainable development

Arab countries are being urged to formulate national plans on achieving sustainable development.

That is one of the recommendations made in the outcome document of the first Arab Ministerial Forum for Housing and Urban Development which wrapped up in Egypt this week.

The meeting was co-organized by UN-Habitat, the UN programme that promotes sustainable city growth.

Nearly 60 per cent of people in the Arab world live in urban areas, according to the agency.

Rugby tackles hunger by raising US$2 million for WFP school meals

Rugby fans have raised nearly US$2 million to provide school meals for children worldwide and to feed people in emergencies, the World Food Programme (WFP) reports.

The money was raised through the 'Tackle Hunger Together' campaign rolled out during this year's Rugby World Cup in the United Kingdom.

Fans in the UK and across the globe were able to make donations either by text on their phones or online which were matched by the UK government.

WFP says the funds will provide school meals for children in Senegal and Malawi, thus encouraging them to attend school and better concentrate on their lessons.

It will also be used to support families affected by emergencies.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 2’08″

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