News in Brief 14 January 2016 (PM)

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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses the press following his briefing to the General Assembly on his priorities for the organization in 2016.UN Photo/Mark Garten

Burundi's government must "take steps to build confidence": UN chief

Burundi's government must "take steps to build confidence" before further violence overwhelms the country and threatens neighbouring states.

That's the view of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, speaking to reporters on Thursday.

Political and ethnic tensions since President Pierre Nkurunziza won a disputed third term last year, have led to the death of more than 400 people, while more than 220,000 have fled their homes.

Mr Ban said he welcomed the Security Council's decision to visit Burundi next week, and said the UN would do all it can to avert a humanitarian catastrophe there.

"Violence could deepen inside the country and spill across borders. Government must take steps to build the confidence including releasing prisoners of conscience and lifting restrictions on civil society."

Canada welcomes its 10,000th refugee from Syria

Canada has welcomed its 10,000th refugee from Syria, less than two months after pledging to accept that number.

The UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, applauded the country's swift humanitarian response, calling it a "significant milestone" which has gavin thousands of the world's most vulnerable people a fresh start.

UNHCR has worked closely with Canada and the International Organization for Migration to manage the programme, and said it was looking forward to continuing its support for the refugees.

The agency said it was vital that other countries follow Canada's example, especially as conditions were deteriorating for the 4.3 million Syrian refugees living in neighbouring Middle Eastern countries.

US turns to UN for more help with Central American refugees

The US is enlisting greater support from the UN to help vulnerable people fleeing deadly violence in Central America.

Washington is taking the initiative to start resettling refugees from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, by setting up processing centres in other Latin American countries where they can find shelter.

UNHCR welcomed the move and said it underscored the "urgent need" for coordinated regional action, to address the humanitarian situation.

The UN will determine if migrants could be eligible for asylum, and according to news reports, the US could admit up to 9,000 migrants each year from the effected countries.

Matthew Wells, United Nations.

Duration: 2'00"

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