Home » 31 Mar 2016 Entries posted on “March 2016”

Global partnerships need to break "traditional silos"

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Global partnerships involving multiple stakeholders need to break "traditional silos" to make decisions and find solutions. The President of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Oh Joon made the remarks during a debate held on Thursday. The forum brought businesses and foundations to discuss with governments how to better support the internationally agreed development [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Sustainable Development Goals, Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 31 March 2016 (PM)

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More aid needed for war-torn Libya The international community is being urged to increase assistance in the form of food, water and medicine to people in war-torn Libya. The UN humanitarian coordinator for the North African country, Ali Al-Za'tari made the appeal on Thursday. Life-saving aid is being distributed throughout Libya by the UN and [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

South Sudan: Put people first to achieve peace

Displaced women sit in the ashes of their shelter which was burnt during the fighting and fires on 17 and 18 2016 February in the UN Protection of Civilians site in Malakal, South Sudan. Photo: OCHA/Guiomar Pau Sole

There is urgent need to sustain momentum towards achieving peace in South Sudan, the Security Council heard on Thursday. Although the country will celebrate five years of independence in July, it has been mired in political turmoil and violence for roughly half that time. Conflict between government forces and armed groups has pushed more than [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN Global Perspective: focus on Syria, Balkans and young refugees

Syrian children shelter in a doorway amid gunfire and shelling. Photo: UNICEF/Alessio Romenzi

Frustration mounts at obstacles to Syria aid convoys In Syria, desperately needed aid is still not getting through to some besieged areas, the United Nations has said. Jan Egeland, who’s the UN humanitarian coordinator for the country, said there was frustration that early momentum that initially helped aid convoys reach people in the wartorn country [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Global Perspective | Read More »

UN and Africa: focus on HIV/AIDS, African Development Week and Gabon economy

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Mandela grandsons say HIV/AIDS can be defeated by 2030 The grandsons of the man who fought to dismantle apartheid in South Africa say the global battle against HIV/AIDS can be won in their lifetime. Ndaba and Kweku Mandela are spokespersons for the Protect the Goal campaign, launched by UNAIDS in connection with the 2014 World [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN and Africa | Read More »

UN Gender Focus: women in the Great Lakes region, Libyan women and women leaders in Botswana

Julienne Lusenge. UN Photo

Great Lakes women demand more active role in peace talks Women-led groups in the African Great Lakes region are demanding a more active and integral role in on-going peace processes, a female activist has said. Julienne Lusenge from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is a member of the Women's Platform for Peace, Security [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Gender Focus | Read More »

UN Daily News 31 March 2016

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News and Features from United Nations Radio.

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Global city boom could cut rich vs poor health divide

An array of motorbikes crossing Long Bien Bridge on the Red River in Hanoi, Viet Nam. Half of the world's population lives in urban environments. UN Photo/Kibae

The key global goal of extending health coverage for all people is proving hard to achieve, but it could be helped by the world's growing urban population, the UN said Thursday. Citing research into city-dwellers in nearly 100 countries, the UN report found that besides health inequality, urbanization offers major opportunities to improve people's life [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Sustainable Development Goals, Today's News | Read More »

"Sickening" sex abuse allegations uncovered in CAR

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The latest allegations of sexual abuse and exploitation uncovered in the past two weeks in the Central African Republic have been described as "sickening" by the UN human rights chief. Charges have been made against UN troops from Burundi and Gabon, French Sangari Forces as well as local armed groups in the Kemo region in [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

War criminals in Balkans "not heroes"

Serge Brammertz, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY). UN File Photo/Loey Felipe

People who have been found guilty of war crimes in the former Yugoslavia should not be considered "heroes" according to the Prosecutor of the ICTY, the UN tribunal tasked with prosecuting crimes committed during the Balkan wars of the 1990s. Serge Brammertz was speaking before the acquittal on Thursday of the former Serbian politician, Vojislav [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 31 March 2016 (AM)

IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano. Photo: IAEA/Dean Calma

Safety key to future nuclear development Safety is the key to the future development of nuclear power, the head of the UN nuclear agency told delegates attending a summit on the industry. World leaders are in Washington DC to discuss the role of the nuclear industry in the world, cyber threats as well as the [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Frustration mounts at obstacles to Syria aid convoys

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In Syria, desperately needed aid is still not getting through to some besieged areas, the United Nations said on Thursday. Jan Egeland, who's the UN humanitarian coordinator for the country, said there was frustration that early momentum that initially helped aid convoys reach people in the wartorn country had not been maintained. Here's Daniel Johnson [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Russia moving "from despair to hope" in fight against HIV/AIDS

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Russia is moving "from despair to hope" in its efforts to address HIV/AIDS, a senior UN official has said. Michel Sidibé, Executive Director of UNAIDS, was recently in Moscow for the 5th Eastern Europe and Central Asia AIDS Conference. The meeting focused on the urgent measures the region must take to end the AIDS epidemic [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Green" industrialization a focus for African Development Week

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Migration, climate change and what's been called "green" industrialization are just some of the issues topping the agenda when African economic and finance ministers gather in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, beginning this Thursday. The conference is part of the wider events for the first African Development Week organized by the UN Economic Commission for Africa, known [...]

31 Mar 2016 | Posted in Focus on Climate Change, Today's Features | Read More »

Time to break the silence on sex abuse by UN troops, says envoy

UN special envoy for CAR, Parfait Onanga-Anyang. File Photo: MINUSCA

The days of silence on sexual abuse and exploitation are over, the UN special envoy in the Central African Republic (CAR) has said, encouraging victims to come forward. In 2015, the organization confirmed that 22 of the 69 cases against peacekeepers serving under the UN flag took place in the West African country. A recent [...]

30 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Stand against "negative, nativist narratives" UN chief tells Sweden

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon delivers the 2016 Dag Hammarskjöld Lecture in Stockholm, Sweden. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

Sweden should take a stand against negative and "nativist narratives", when it comes to refugees, the UN Secretary-General urged on Wednesday. But he also commended the European nation for taking in the most refugees, in proportion to its size. Ban Ki-moon made the remarks at Uppsala University, during the Dag Hammarskjöld Lecture, delivered in memory [...]

30 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 30 March 2016 (PM)

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Trust fund for victims of sexual abuse formally established A trust fund for victims of sexual exploitation and abuse at the hands of United Nations personnel has been formally established. The UN Department of Field Support notified all 193 Member States on Wednesday that it was now in operation. The fund is one of the [...]

30 Mar 2016 | Posted in Sustainable Development Goals, Today's News | Read More »

Protection of antiquities is a global issue

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The protection of historical artifacts is not just an issue during conflict, but a global concern. That's the view of Dr Donna Yates, a lecturer on antiquities trafficking and art crime at the University of Glasgow in Scotland. Dr Yates participated in a round table discussion on the movement of cultural property hosted by the [...]

30 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN Daily News 30 March 2016

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News and Features from United Nations Radio.

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Income inequality gap at its highest in 30 years: UN official

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Seven out of 10 people in the world today live in countries where income inequality has risen, in many cases, to the highest level in 30 years. That's according to the President of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) during a special meeting on inequality on Wednesday. The UN global goals for 2030 have [...]

30 Mar 2016 | Posted in Sustainable Development Goals, Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 30 March 2016 (AM)

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Make "universal health coverage" a reality across South East Asia Countries across South East Asia need to make "universal health coverage a reality". That's the message coming at the start of a three-day meeting organized by the World Health Organization (WHO), taking place in India. The conference on health and sustainable development heard that an [...]

30 Mar 2016 | Posted in Sustainable Development Goals, Today's News | Read More »

Global community must step up on refugees, says UN’s Ban

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. UN File Photo/Jean-Marc Ferre

Dealing with the Syrian refugee crisis is the responsibility of the international community and everyone should "step up" to do their fair share, UN chief Ban Ki-moon has said. The UN Secretary-General made his comments at a UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) conference in Geneva on Wednesday. To date, pledges have been made to resettle 179,000 [...]

30 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Beginnings" of Central Asian cooperation over terror prevention

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Central Asia is showing the "beginnings" of cooperation between states over preventing acts of terrorism. That's the view of Petko Draganov, head of the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy in Central Asia. He was speaking as regional governments, UN agencies and other organizations gathered in Almaty, Kazakhstan, at the beginning of the week, for [...]

30 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 29 March 2016 (PM)

Women and children displaced from Jebel Marra, in North Darfur, due to fighting, take shelter in the Tawilla new arrivals site. Photo: OCHA

UN chief welcomes AU peace roadmap for Sudan United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has welcomed the African Union’s effort to accelerate progress towards ending the fighting in Darfur, South Kordofan and the Blue Nile states. The agreement was brokered by the African Union High-level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) for Sudan and South Sudan, which is chaired by former [...]

29 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Millions still living in servitude, slavery worldwide: UN

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The racism that prevails in today's societies and seen in "untold acts" of discrimination, bias and prejudice can be traced back to slavery, according to the UN Deputy Secretary-General. Jan Eliasson made the remarks during an event on Tuesday marking the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade. [...]

29 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"Unfairy Tales" bring much-needed attention to young refugees

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The UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) has released a series of animated short films called "Unfairy Tales" designed to bring attention to the refugee stories of children and young adults. It's part of a UNICEF initiative to highlight universal child rights, at a times when tens-of-millions of young refugees are on the move. The short films, [...]

29 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN Daily News 29 March 2016

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Syrian refugees: Conference seeks to expand resettlement, other solutions

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Increasing the number of places that Syrian refugees can call home is among the aims of an international conference in Geneva on Wednesday. Representatives from more than 90 governments are meeting in efforts to expand resettlement options and other solutions for the millions of people who have fled the country. Five years of continuous fighting [...]

29 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Tunisia youth unemployment a "serious problem", says UN Chief

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Youth unemployment in Tunisia presents a "serious problem", the UN Secretary-General said during a visit to the country. Ban Ki-moon and the World Bank President, Jim Yong Kim, are on the last leg of a four-country tour of the Middle Eastern region that includes Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq. Janie Cangelosi reports. Two out of five [...]

29 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 29 March 2016 (AM) – Geneva

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  Thousands more South Sudanese flee conflict and food shortages In South Sudan, food insecurity and growing unrest have forced nearly 40,000 people to flee the country and head for its northern neighbour, Sudan, in recent weeks. The information comes from UN Refugee Agency the (UNHCR), which is concerned by the number of people who've [...]

29 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Yemen fighting has devastated millions of children's lives says UNICEF

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The lives of millions of children have been devastated in Yemen as fighting grows "ever more fierce", the UN said Tuesday. Underlining the need for a halt in fighting ahead of upcoming peace talks, the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) said that nearly 10 million youngsters are now in urgent need of humanitarian help. Daniel Johnson [...]

29 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"High correlation" between inequality and unrest

Sewing machine operators work at the "Multiwear" Factory at Sonapi Industrial Park, Haiti. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

When people are less equal, there's more likelihood of social and political unrest; that's the view of Harvard University Professor and Nobel Laureate, Eric Maskin. He says that while it was widely expected that globalization would reduce inequality, income disparities between skilled and unskilled workers has only increased in recent years. The International Monetary Fund's [...]

29 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 28 March 2016 (PM)

Blue helmets and uniforms of UN Peacekeepers. UN Photo/Marco Dormino

  New allegations of sexual abuse in CAR confirmed by UN New allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse by UN and non-UN forces have been confirmed in the Central African Republic. The UN mission in the country, MINUSCA, said it received new information of allegations in Kemo prefecture which reportedly refer to incidents that occurred [...]

28 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Liberating Palmyra important to Syrian restoration

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The retaking of a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Syria is the first step in restoring and preserving the cultural history of the war-torn country. That's according to Giovanni Boccardi, chief of the Emergency Preparedness and Response Unit at the UN cultural agency, UNESCO. Palmyra, a historic city that served as a major trading hub [...]

28 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN Daily News 28 March 2016

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Diversify to grow the economy, says top economist in Gabon

A woman outside her home in the village of Imbong, near Mekambo in Gabon's northeastern Ogooué-Ivindo province. UN Photo/Gill Fickling

Diversifying Gabon's economy will make it more resilient in the face of plunging oil prices. That's according to International Monetary Fund's Mission Chief for the West African country, Montfort Mlachila. The economy remains heavily dependent on oil and due to the drop in oil prices, like most producers around the world, Gabon's revenues are falling [...]

28 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Women first to notice radicalization of individuals

Women carry placards with messages of peace. Goma, Democratic Republic of the Congo. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

Women are the first people to notice the radicalization of individuals within their families and communities, according to the head of the UN's gender-focused agency, UN Women. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka made the comment at a Security Council debate on Monday focusing on the role of women in conflict prevention in Africa. Janie Cangelosi has more details. [...]

28 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Great Lakes women demand more active role in peace talks

Julienne Lusenge. UN Photo

Women-led groups in the African Great Lakes region are demanding a more active and integral role in on-going peace processes, a female activist has said. Julienne Lusenge from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is a member of the Women's Platform for Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework backed by the UN. As the head [...]

28 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Bombing at Pakistan park shows “utter contempt for humanity”

Mogens Lykketoft is the UN General Assembly President. UN File Photo: Amanda Voisard.

A  suicide bombing at a park in Pakistan on Sunday that killed and injured scores of people has been condemned by the United Nations. More than 60 people died and hundreds more were wounded in the blast at the Gulshan-e-Iqbal Park in the city of Lahore, in the east of the country. A faction of [...]

27 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Syrian conflict: Supporting refugees and host countries

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Mrs Ban at Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan. (UN Photo: Mark Garten).

The Syrian conflict, now in its sixth year,  has generated the largest displacement crisis globally. Countries in the Middle East and North Africa are hosting nearly five million people who have fled the violence and insecurity. The UN Secretary-General and the President of the World Bank were in the region to show their support and [...]

27 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Jordan praised for hosting Syrian refugees

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met with King Abdullah II ibn Al-Hussein of Jordan in Amman on Sunday. UN Photo: Mark Garten.

Jordan has been praised for taking in more than 600,000 refugees from neighbouring Syria. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was in the country on Sunday, where he met with King Abdullah and other officials in the capital, Amman. The visit to Jordan and other Middle East countries hosting Syrian and other refugees is part of the [...]

27 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Kenyan farmers shift from maize to sorghum to meet changing climate

Sorghum plant. IFAD TV  Video Caption

Climate change is forcing farmers in eastern Kenya to grow against the grain of tradition. The dry season has been getting longer which has been causing their maize harvests to fail. The UN's International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) says researchers find that sorghum is a more suitable crop to plant. Sam Cole reports on [...]

27 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Iraq leaders urged to work towards inclusive peace

Dr Ahmed Mohamed Ali Al-Madani, President of the Islamic Development Bank; UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon; Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi, and the President of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, at press conference in Baghdad. 26 Photo: UN Assistance Mission for Iraq/PIO.

Leaders in Iraq have been urged by the UN Secretary-General to work towards national reconciliation as a means to defeat the terrorist group ISIL, also known as Daesh. Ban Ki-moon was speaking to the press in Baghdad on Saturday, following a meeting with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and other senior officials. Mr Ban visited Iraq [...]

26 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Reconciliation critical to defeating terrorism in Iraq

Iraq's Council of Representatives. Photo: UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).

The fight against terrorism in Iraq cannot be won through military means alone, the UN Secretary-General has said. Ban Ki-moon's comments came in an address to the country's Council of Representatives meeting in Baghdad on Saturday. Iraq has been battling the terrorist group ISIL, also known as Daesh, which has committed countless murders, rapes and [...]

26 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"Political commitment" needed to tackle alcohol abuse in South Sudan

Search of the Tomping POC site, Juba, South Sudan. Some alcohol was discovered, and poured out. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine

"Political commitment" and effective policies are what's needed to tackle the scourge of drug and alcohol abuse in South Sudan. That's according to James Chitsva, who works with the World Health Organization (WHO) in the world's youngest country. With World Health Day approaching next month, he said that 3.3 million premature deaths globally each year [...]

25 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN chief concludes visit to Lebanon

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and his wife Yoo Soon-taek (behind, left) with children from a Lebanese family in city of Tripoli, Lebanon. UN Photo/Mark Garten.

The international community must support Lebanon which has taken in more than one million Syrian and Palestinian refugees, the UN Secretary-General has said. Ban Ki-moon on Friday wrapped up a two-day visit to the country, accompanied by the Presidents of the World Bank and the Islamic Development Bank. The visit aimed to find ways to [...]

25 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

UN Daily News 25 March 2016

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News in Brief 25 March 2016 (AM)

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon addresses the press. UN File Photo/Amanda Voisard

  UN remembers missing and detained staff UN and humanitarian workers who are being held in captivity or who have gone missing are being remembered this Friday, the International Day of Solidarity with Detained and Missing Staff. It is marked each year on  the anniversary of the abduction of Alec Collett, a former journalist who [...]

25 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Rebuilding of Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon "too long overdue"

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (right) and his wife, Madam Yoo (Ban) Soon-taek, during visit at Nahr El-Bared camp in Lebanon. Photo: UNIFIL.

The reconstruction of a camp for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon that was destroyed during conflict nearly a decade ago is "too long overdue," the UN Secretary-General said on Friday. Ban Ki-moon’s comments came following a visit to the Nahr El-Bared camp located in the northern city of Tripoli. The camp was destroyed during a 2007 [...]

25 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Cessation of hostilities holding as first phase of Syria talks ends

Staffan de Mistura. UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

The Syrian people have every right to have doubts about the peace talks in Geneva, but there are many reasons to believe they will be successful, UN Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura said on Thursday. In an appeal to all Syrians at the end of the first phase of UN-led negotiations in Geneva, de Mistura [...]

25 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Surprising" lack of awareness as world remembers slavery victims

The "Ark of Return", the permanent memorial to honour the victims of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade, located at the Visitors' Plaza of UN headquarters in New York. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas

The lack of awareness, in some parts of the world, of the international slave trade is "surprising". That's the view of one professor, specializing in African anthropology and the history of the Atlantic slave trade. The International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade is observed annually on 25 [...]

25 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Lebanon lauded for role in Syrian refugee crisis

Press Conference in Beirut, Lebanon. Photo: UN

Few countries have demonstrated the generosity that Lebanon has shown towards Syrian refugees, the UN Secretary-General told journalists in the capital, Beirut, on Thursday. The UN chief is in the country for two days together with World Bank President Dr Jim Yong Kim. The two officials held a joint press conference alongside the President of [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Envoys drafting report on way forward for Israeli and Palestinians

Nikolay Mladenov. UN File Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

A two-state solution to the crisis between Israelis and Palestinians is "slipping from our fingers," a senior UN official said on Thursday. Nikolay Mladenov, the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, made the comment in a briefing to the Security Council. He said international envoys are preparing a report that will include [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 24 March 2016 (PM)

The Security Council. UN File Photo/Evan Schneider

Somalia: Security Council extends UN mission mandate The mandate of the UN's operation in Somalia, UNSOM, has been extended through March 2017 following a unanimous vote in the Security Council on Thursday. Council members said the one-year extension underscores the importance of the mission's support to the political process, including the holding of elections this [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

UN Gender Focus: women’s economic empowerment, Yemen peace talks and gender parity in sports

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Women's economic empowerment: no time to waste The world is losing “big time” because women entrepreneurs cannot fully participate in the global economy. That’s the opinion of Arancha Gonzalez, Executive Director at the UN International Trade Centre (ITC), which is working to get one million women-owned businesses to market by 2020. The ITC recently launched She [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Gender Focus | Read More »

UN Global Perspective: focus on Great Lakes, Yemen and extreme weather

A displaced woman in Kanyaruchinya, north of Goma, Democratic Republic of the Congo, (DRC). Photo: MONUSCO/Sylvain Liechti (2013)

Cut "economic lifelines" to armed groups in Great Lakes, urges UN chief The illegal-exploitation of natural resources across Africa's Great Lakes region by armed groups is an "economic lifeline" that needs to be cut. That's according to UN chief Ban Ki-moon, briefing a UN Security Council debate on peace and security in the region. The [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Global Perspective | Read More »

Karadžić verdict sends signal "no one is above the law": UN official

Radovan Karadžić at his initial appearance in court, July 2008. Photo: ICTY

The verdict against former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadžić has sent a clear signal that no one in the world is above the law. That's was the UN Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide's reaction to the conviction of Karadžić by UN judges on ten out of eleven charges he faced, including genocide over [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN Daily News 24 March 2016

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More vigilance needed in Lebanon in face of terror threat

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is greeted by a guard of honour from the uniformed members of UNIFIL. Photo: UNIFIL

Peacekeepers and the Lebanese army need to be "more vigilant" along the border with Syria in the face of a growing threat from the terrorist group ISIL, or Daesh. That's according to the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon who visited the headquarters of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) on Thursday, located in the south [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Human rights chief welcomes Karadžić verdict

Radovan Karadžić.  (Screen grab from ICTY TV)

The conviction of former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadžić for crimes committed during the Balkan wars two decades ago is "hugely significant," the UN Human Rights High Commissioner has said. An international court in The Hague on Thursday found Karadzic guilty of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. He was sentenced to 40 years [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 24 March 2016 (AM)

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (centre left) arrives in Beirut, Lebanon. He is flanked by Sigrid Kaag (left), UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon; and Wafic Rhaime, Secretary General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Emigrants of Lebanon. UN Photo/Mark Garten

  UN chief in Lebanon The UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon arrived in Lebanon this Thursday, the start of a five-day visit to the Middle East, including stops in Jordan and Tunisia. The UN chief is accompanied by the President of the World Bank, Dr Jim Yong Kim, and their visit to the region comes ahead [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Concern voiced over possible "ethnic" disruption to polls in DRC

Maman Sidikou. UN Photo/Manuel Elias

Concern has been voiced by the United Nations over the possible disruption of presidential elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) by people who want to stoke up "ethnic" tensions. Polls are slated for November in the DRC, but logistical and political issues could mean that they will be delayed. The Special Representative [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

South Sudan under pressure at UN Rights Council

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Greater international scrutiny on rights abuses in South Sudan, Syria, DPRK, Iran and Myanmar has been given the green light at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. Amid a flurry of resolutions, the 47-member assembly agreed to creating a high-level human rights probe into South Sudan and to extending the term of an existing [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

UN and Africa: focus on Libya, Botswana and Liberia

A girl looks out of her house window in Benghazi, Libya. File Photo: UNSMIL

"Extremely risky" conditions for civilians throughout Libya: UN An "ailing" health sector and worsening humanitarian conditions are making life "extremely risky" for Libyans. That's the verdict of Ali Al-Zaatari, the UN Humanitarian coordinator in Libya. The North African country has been embroiled in civil war between rival factions since 2014, leaving nearly two and a [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN and Africa | Read More »

"Extremely risky" conditions for civilians throughout Libya: UN

A girl looks out of her house window in Benghazi, Libya. File Photo: UNSMIL

An "ailing" health sector and deteriorating humanitarian conditions are making life "extremely risky" for Libyans. That's the verdict of Ali Al-Zaatari, the UN Humanitarian coordinator in Libya. The North African country has been embroiled in civil war between rival factions since 2014, leaving nearly 2.5 million in need of assistance. Mr Zaatari said that access [...]

24 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

87 million children under 7 "have known nothing but conflict"

Two year old Yusef lives in the Domiz refugee camp in Northern Iraq with his two brothers, mother and grandmother. Photo: UNICEF/UN02517/Schermbrucker

Some 87 million children across the world under seven "have known nothing but conflict" according to the UN Children's Fund. UNICEF says that living in conflict zones hinders the brain growth of young people and robs them of their childhood. Dianne Penn reports. More than 86.7 million children under the age of seven have spent [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

EU foreign policy chief adds pressure on Syria parties at peace talks

Federica Mogherini. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas.

The success of the Syria peace talks is crucial for the people of the war-torn country and for everyone in Europe, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said, in a surprise announcement at the UN on Wednesday. Standing side by side with UN Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura in Geneva, where negotiations are taking place, [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 23 March 2016 (PM)

UNRWA medical personnel providing vital healthcare to civilians at a mobile health point in Yalda, Syria. Photo: UNRWA

  Syrian humanitarian projects receive US$19 million Nearly US$19 million has been allocated to humanitarian partners in Syria, the United Nations reported on Wednesday. The funds will be used for water, sanitation, nutrition, health and education projects that meet the needs of 1.4 million people. UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Syria Yacoub El Hillo said recent [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Envoy announces ceasefire, start date for Yemen talks

Yemen's capital, Sana'a, in July 2015. Photo: OCHA/ Charlotte Cans

The latest round of peace talks on Yemen slated for next month will be preceded by a cessation of hostilities. UN Special Envoy Ismail Ould Cheik Ahmed made the announcement at a press conference in New York on Wednesday. A year of conflict between forces loyal to the President and Houthi rebels has displaced more [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"Serious" humanitarian situation in Yemen city

The humanitarian crisis particularly affects the most vulnerable which includes the elderly, children, women and the disabled, many of whom rely entirely on humanitarian assistance. Photo: OCHA/Eman Al-Awami

The humanitarian situation in the besieged Yemeni city of Taizz has been described as "serious" by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). The agency said 13 of its trucks laden with blankets, mattresses and other relief items arrived there on Sunday after being blocked over the last nine months. A year-long conflict between government forces and [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Iraqi despair could turn to "bigger exodus", warns top UN aid coordinator

John Ging. UN Photo/Mark Garten

An "even bigger exodus" of desperate Iraqis is possible if funding cannot be found to help them out of an increasingly dire humanitarian situation, a top UN aid official warned on Wednesday. John Ging, who's in charge of coordinating field operations worldwide, said that more than 10 million Iraqis urgently need assistance in the conflict-ravaged [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

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Weather extremes are planet's way of raising alarm: UN

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The record-breaking weather phenomena that marked 2015 show every sign of continuing this year with more adverse effects on people and the planet, the UN said this week. In its latest climate report, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) identified many worrying indicators, from unprecedented temperatures, unabated ocean warming and shrinking sea ice. Janie Cangelosi reports. [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Aid "breakthrough" in Yemen

Girls fetching water in Mawyah district, Taiz. This role often falls on the shoulders of girls and young women, often at the expense of their education. Credit: OCHA

Life-saving aid has reached the embattled governorate of Taizz in Yemen, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) reported on Wednesday. UNHCR said 13 of its trucks laden with blankets, mattresses and other relief items arrived there on Sunday. For months, the agency has been advocating for regular and sustained access. The UN estimates that four out [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Countries must Unite to End TB, says WHO

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Tens of millions of people have been saved from the deadly tuberculosis disease since 2000 but the "battle is only half-won", UN health experts said ahead of World TB Day. More than nine million people fall ill from TB every year and 1.5 million of them will die from it. Now, in a call to [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 23 March 2016 (AM)

Martin Delingon's bathes near his house on July 13, 2014, that was among those in the Philippines crushed by this ship that was swept ashore by typhoon Haiyan's storm surge. Photo: Dominic Chavez/World Bank

  Time for decisive action to address climate change The world must take action now as it faces a "hotter, drier, wetter" future due to climate change. That's the message from UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon this Wednesday, echoing the theme for World Meteorological Day. Mr Ban said the effects of a warming planet will be [...]

23 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Media to increase women's representation in newsroom and content

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Some 35 leading media outlets from around the world have committed to increase women's representation in the newsroom and in news content. The initiative was agreed with UN Women, the United Nations entity tasked with promoting gender equality on Tuesday in New York. Janie Cangelosi has more details. The initiative, "The Step it Up for [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 22 March 2016 (PM)

Human Rights day in Goma, DRC Congo. UN Photo/Abel Kavanagh

  Execution of human rights defender in DRC strongly condemned The summary execution of a human rights defender in Democratic Republic of the Congo has been strongly condemned by the UN mission in the country MONUSCO. Evariste Kasali, who was a coordinator of the NGO Organisation Populaire pour la Paix, was reportedly killed by armed [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

De Mistura: Brussels bombs show we must extinguish fire of war in Syria

Staffan de Mistura. UN Photo/Anne-Laure Lechat

The terrorist outrage in Brussels is a reminder that peace talks on Syria cannot fail, UN negotiator Staffan de Mistura said Tuesday. Speaking just two days from the end of the first round of discussions in Geneva, the UN Special Envoy for Syria spoke of his "horror" at the attacks in the Belgian city that [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

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"Despicable" Brussels terrorist attacks condemned by UN chief

European Union headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. Photo: Carmen Cuesta Roca

Terrorist attacks in the Belgian capital Brussels in which some 30 people have reportedly died have been condemned by the UN Secretary-General. Two bombs were detonated at Brussels airport at around 8 a.m. local time on Tuesday. Another explosion struck a metro station in the city an hour later. Janie Cangelosi reports. It was still [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Tap into economic growth with water, says UN

Water_350300_UNICEFKarin Schermbrucker

Water plays a key role in job creation and shortages could seriously harm economic growth in future, UN experts said on Tuesday, which is World Water Day. Announcing new data highlighting how greatly jobs are influenced by the resource, the 2016 United Nations World Water Development Report notes that 1.5 billion people are employed in [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Privatizing Liberia's education "a gross violation" of rights

Students in Liberia. UN Photo/Staton Winter

Outsourcing Liberia's primary school system to a private company would be a "violation of the right to education." That's the view of the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to education, Kishore Singh. The government announced its intention to move towards a public-private partnership system at the beginning of the year, saying it was the [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Humanitarian situation in Yemen "near to catastrophic"

Displaced Yemeni children living in school corridors in Amran governorate where schools hosting IDPs are already filled to capacity. Photo: WHO Yemen

One year in to the conflict in Yemen, the humanitarian situation is extremely dire and in some areas "near to catastrophic" according to the UN's humanitarian coordinator in the country. Yemen has been rocked by political instability for years, but a brutal civil war escalated last March, between forces loyal to the President, backed by [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 22 March 2016 (AM) – Geneva

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  Alarm over EU migrant deal with Turkey In Europe, the lack of clarity on the European Union's migrant deal with Turkey is a cause for serious concern, UN agencies have said. The new EU agreement, which involves sending refugees arriving in Greece back to Turkey, was criticised in Geneva on Tuesday by the UN [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Corporate take-over of water must be addressed

View of a coal-fired plant in Mpumalanga, South Africa. UN Photo/Gill Fickling

Extractive industries like gas, oil and mining companies are taking control of water resources in local communities and even putting people's health at risk. That's according to Sister Áine O'Connor, from the NGO Mercy International Association which is part of coalition of NGOs which addresses unjust and unsustainable extractive practices and policies. These industries have [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Gender parity in sports still far off, says former Olympian

Nicole Hoevertsz. Photo: UN

Gender parity in sports both "on and off the field" is still far off, according to the International Olympic Committee (OIC). The organization has been working with young people in Brazil ahead of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games to spread messages of equality, non-discrimination, non-violence and girls' empowerment. It has also been trying to increase [...]

22 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Syria envoy to push on political transition issue

Staffan de Mistura.  UN File Photo/Jean-Marc Ferre

Peace talks on Syria resumed in Geneva on Monday where UN negotiator Staffan de Mistura has indicated that it is time to make more progress on the issue of political transition in the war-torn country. After meeting with the government of Syria in Geneva, de Mistura said he had been told that it was "premature" [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 21 March 2016 (PM)

Stop killing journalists. Photo: UNESCO

  UNESCO condemns murder of Brazilian journalist The murder of a journalist in Brazil has been condemned by the head of the UN cultural agency, UNESCO. João Valdecir de Borba, a former crime reporter who recently switched to hosting a music programme, was shot by two unidentified gunmen while live on air on 10 March. [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Forests play "critical role" in protecting water

In many rural economies, the forest enterprises of families and communities are major contributors to local livelihoods. Photo: FAO/Giuseppe Bizzarri

Forests have a critical role to play in protecting water resources around the world according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Eight out of ten people in the world have difficulty regularly accessing enough water. On the International Day of Forests, marked annually on 21 March, the UN agency is launching a new programme [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

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Cut "economic lifelines" to militias in Great Lakes: UN chief

A displaced woman in Kanyaruchinya, north of Goma, Democratic Republic of the Congo, (DRC). Photo: MONUSCO/Sylvain Liechti (2013)

The illegal-exploitation of natural resources across Africa's Great Lakes region by armed groups is an "economic lifeline" that needs to be cut. That's according to UN chief Ban Ki-moon, briefing a UN Security Council debate on peace and security in the region. The Great Lakes area consists of four countries in East and Central Africa. [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

250,000 Colombian children affected by conflict despite peace talks

Internally displaced children, victims of conflict in Colombia. UN Photo/Mark Garten

More than 250,000 children have been affected by the conflict in Colombia since peace talks between the Government and the country's main armed opposition group, FARC began three years ago; that's according to the UN Children's Fund, (UNICEF). An estimated 1,000 children were used or recruited by non-state armed groups during the same period. The [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 21 March 2016 (AM)

Children of African descent. UN File Photo: Logan Abassi.

Stand up for diversity on International Day against racism People worldwide are being urged by the UN Secretary-General to stand up for diversity and dignity for all. Ban Ki-moon's call comes in a message issued on Monday, 21 March: the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. Mr Ban said economic hardship and "political [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Situation in Palestine is untenable, says rights expert

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The situation in the Palestinian Territories is increasingly at risk amid "desperate" actions by civilians and allegations of "excessive force" by the Israeli military, the UN Human Rights Council heard Monday. The warning comes from UN Special Rapporteur Makarim Wibisono, who condemned all wanton acts of violence and insisted that peace could not come without [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Women's economic empowerment: no time to waste

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The world is losing "big time" because women entrepreneurs cannot fully participate in the global economy. That's the opinion of Arancha Gonzalez, Executive Director at the UN International Trade Centre (ITC), which is working to get one million women-owned businesses to market by 2020. The ITC recently launched She Trades, an online platform and mobile [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

World Down Syndrome Day 2016: Focus on inclusion

World Down Syndrome Day is observed on 21 March. UN File Photo

Children and adults with Down syndrome should be empowered to contribute to the global common future. That's the message from the UN Secretary-General on World Down Syndrome Day, observed this Monday, 21 March. This year's theme looks at the importance of friendship and community. Dianne Penn discusses this with Carol Boys, Chief Executive at the [...]

21 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Happiness is more than "individual contentment" says UN chief

Improving the level of happiness around the world means a lot more than just "individual contentment." That's the heart of the message coming from UN chief Ban Ki-moon on the International Day of Happiness, celebrated with a smile on Sunday. Carmen Cuesta Roca has more. The UN is focussing this year's international day on how [...]

20 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Investing in Africa's emerging women leaders

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Investing in young African women is good for their countries, the continent and the world, according to two young women from Botswana. Refilwe Kerekang and Ann Moatshe have been at UN Headquarters to participate in the latest session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). Both are former fellows of the Moremi Initiative [...]

20 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Istanbul terrorist bombing condemned by UN chief

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.  UN Photo/Rick Bajornas

A terrorist bombing in the Turkish city, Istanbul, in which at least five people reportedly died has been condemned by the UN Secretary-General. The attack is the latest in recent series of bombings in Turkey in which dozens of people have been killed. Daniel Dickinson has more details. News reports say two Israelis, two Americans [...]

19 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Angry Birds help make UN and the world a happier place

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The Angry Birds came to the UN on Friday to help make "the world a better place". That's according to the UN Secretary-General, who was on hand to appoint "Red" of the Angry Birds mobile phone game, an honorary ambassador at UN headquarters. Matthew Wells has the story. In order to mark the International Day [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in Celebrity Partners, Sustainable Development Goals, Today's News | Read More »

Burundi's people living in terror, warns UN human rights chief

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Burundi's people are living in terror because of continued human rights violations, a senior UN official told members of the Security Council Friday. Hundreds of people have been killed with thousands detained while more than 250,000 are refugees in neighbouring countries since April's political crisis erupted, the UN says. This has created a major humanitarian [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 18 March 2016 (PM)

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"Refugees need protection, not rejection" says UN Refugee Agency The method by which a deal agreed by the European Union to return refugees to Turkey is implemented is "crucial" to its success the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has said. Under the agreement, migrants and refugees arriving in Greece will be sent back to Turkey, which [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Soccer gives a voice to Afghan female athletes

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Soccer is being used as a platform to talk about women's issues in a male-dominated society, an Afghan female athlete has said. Khalida Popal, a former captain and founding member of the country's first women's national soccer team, fled in 2011 after receiving death threats. People would sometimes throw trash during games, even going as [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Women face "rough political arena" in Botswana

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Women in Botswana face a "rough political arena," but the government of the Southern African country says it is trying to increase their representation in parliament. Currently just five of a total of 57 parliamentarians are female. Edwin Batshu is Minister of Labour and Home Affairs with responsibility for gender affairs. He has been in [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

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US recognition of ISIL's "international crimes" an "important step": UN

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Official recognition by the government of the United States that atrocities committed by the terrorist group ISIL amount to genocide and crimes against humanity, has been welcomed by the UN. The UN Secretary-General's representative in Iraq, Ján Kubiš, said that it was an "important step" and called on other members of the international community to [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 18 March 2016 (AM) – Geneva

Yemen_Sana_2015-350300_OCHACharlotte Cans

Coalition airstrikes blamed for "carnage" in packed Yemen market A double airstrike on a crowded marketplace in Yemen which killed more than 100 people earlier this week has been condemned by the UN's human rights chief. In a statement issued on Friday in Geneva, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein described the targeting of the Al Khamees [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

"Women feed Africa" but have low access to land

Two women grind rice outside a water pump station in the area of Koroyomme, Timbuktu. UN Photo/Marco Dormino

Women are the main producers of food in Africa but continue to have problems accessing land that is typically owned by men; that's according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). On Wednesday, the UN agency is launching a partnership with ECOWAS, the Economic Community of West African States, which is focusing on addressing gender [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Young African women at UN to share, learn and lead

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A Ghana-based initiative is helping young African women to transform their continent. Since 2009, the Moremi Initiative for Women's Leadership in Africa has been supporting future politicians, activists and entrepreneurs to bring about positive change and development. Several of their fellows participated in an intergenerational dialogue held on the sidelines of the latest session of [...]

18 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Envoy expects Haiti interim leaders will ensure election goes forward

A wide view of a Security Council meeting. UN Photo/Manuel Elias

After more than two months without an elected leader, Haitians will go to the polls in April to choose a new President. A disputed run-off election in January was postponed due to violence and an interim President was elected last month in line with an agreement aimed at avoiding a leadership vacuum. Sandra Honore, head [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Caribbean News, Today's Features | Read More »

"Deep concern" voiced by Security Council over South Sudan conflict

UN Photo/Amanda Voisard

"Deep concern" has been expressed by the UN Security Council over the failure to implement a peace agreement signed last August by the warring parties in South Sudan. Civil war has engulfed the world's youngest nation for more than two years, stemming from fighting between factions loyal to the country's President and his former deputy. [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Women, girls in "driving seat" of humanitarian decision-making, says UN

Stephen O'Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator. UN File Photo/Manuel Elias

Put women and girls in the driving seat of decision-making during crises, the UN humanitarian chief has urged. Stephen O'Brien spoke during a roundtable discussion Thursday on how to prioritize the rights of women and girls for a more effective response. A World Humanitarian Summit is set to take place in Istanbul in May this [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"Productive" Syria talks, but "no excuse" for delaying aid: UN envoy

DeMistura_20160318-350300AnneLaureLechat

A "productive" fourth day of Syria peace talks has ended in Geneva but there is "no excuse" for ongoing problems encountered by aid convoys, UN negotiator Staffan de Mistura said Thursday. Speaking after meeting with the main opposition group the High Negotiations Committee, Mr de Mistura noted that the cessation of hostilities is still largely [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 17 March 2016 (PM)

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Double suicide attacks in Nigeria condemned by UN chief The attacks carried out by two female suicide bombers in north-east Nigeria on Wednesday which left 20 dead and many others injured, have been condemned by the UN Secretary-General. Ban Ki-moon, in a statement on Thursday, extended his "heartfelt condolences" to the families of the victims [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

UN Global Perspective: focus on Syria and gender equality

Staffan de Mistura. Photo: UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

Syria envoy "hopes Russia withdrawal" will help talks Russia’s surprise decision to reduce military operations in Syria could help the peace talks now underway in Geneva, UN negotiator Staffan de Mistura has said. In a statement delivered on Tuesday, de Mistura described the move as “significant” and said he hoped it would have a positive [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Global Perspective | Read More »

"Security first" approach to violent extremism won't work: UN

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A global response to violent extremism that respects human rights will be more effective in the long run than heavy-handed "security-first" measures, United Nations member states heard on Thursday. Speaking at the UN in Geneva, Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Kate Gilmore, said that promoting equality and non-discrimination were key ways to counter the [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

UN Gender Focus: gender pay gap, child marriage and empowerment of girls

Sade Baderinwa moderates a dialogue on gender equality between Justin Trudeau (left) and Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka (right),  UN Photo/Mark Garten

Women need to earn as much as men for the same job: Trudeau Women need to earn as much as men for doing the same job. That was the clear message from the head of UN Women, the UN's gender agency, speaking alongside the Canadian Prime Minister at UN headquarters this week. Women in most [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Gender Focus | Read More »

Happiness makes for a gender-equal world: UN

Happiness-Event-17MAR16-350

"Go and be happy!" it's not only a trend but a way of life that David Rodriguez of the Marriot International Hotel and style guru Stacy London are calling for. Marriot says it has put the happiness and well-being of its employees first, making the 2016 Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For list. Mr Rodriguez [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Sustainable Development Goals, Today's Features | Read More »

Syria government urged to allow access to besieged zones

Intra Syrian Talks with Staffan De Mistura and Qadri Jamil, leader of Syrian Opposition Group Formed in Moscow, Cairo to Join Geneva Talks. UN Photo/Anne-Laure Lechat

Efforts are continuing in Syria to deliver aid to communities in desperate need. The UN warned on Thursday that the situation is still "very, very dire" and that the route to many areas remains blocked. Jan Egeland, who's coordinating the humanitarian mission from the UN in Geneva, said that convoys have now reached more than [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

UN and Africa: focus on South Sudan and gender disparities in agriculture

Women and children have suffered devastating attacks in South Sudan's Unity State. Photo: UNICEF/South Sudan/Sebastian Rich

South Sudan "scorched earth" policy revealed in UN probe South Sudan's government is responsible for horrendous human rights violations which include a so-called "scorched earth" policy against civilians involving rape and murder, the UN has said. In a report published by the UN Human Rights Office, OHCHR, investigators recorded more than 1,300 rapes in one [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN and Africa | Read More »

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News in Brief 17 March 2016 (AM)

WFP-Myanmar-AUG15File-17MAR16-350

Food shortages persist in Myanmar seven months after deadly cyclone More than seven months after Cyclone Komen struck Myanmar, poor rural communities are still suffering high levels of food shortages. That's according to a UN report published on Thursday which warns that the hardest-hit areas of Chin and Rakhine state have failed to recover and [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Sierra Leone's swift work ended Ebola flare-up: WHO

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The end of a new Ebola flare-up in Sierra Leone has been confirmed by UN health agency the World Health Organization (WHO). The WHO announcement comes 42 days after the last person confirmed to have the deadly disease in the country tested negative for a second time. This is the critical time period that marks [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

African women need "more access" to the "formal" jobs market

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

African women are well represented in the "informal" jobs sector, but need "more access" to the formal workplace. So says Nigerian economist, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, who is best known for her two terms as Nigerian Finance Minister and as a Managing Director of the World Bank. She said that many career women still feel "the odds [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Women need to earn as much as men for the same job: Trudeau

Sade Baderinwa moderates a dialogue on gender equality between Justin Trudeau (left) and Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka (right),  UN Photo/Mark Garten

Women need to earn as much as men for doing the same job. That was the clear message from the head of the UN's gender agency, speaking alongside the Canadian Prime Minister at UN headquarters on Wednesday. Women in most countries earn on average only 60 to 75 per cent of men's wages, the UN [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Singer Michael Bolton raises his voice for women and girls

Singer Michael Bolton spoke to UN Radio's Dianne Penn. Photo: D. Dickinson/UN Radio.

American singer Michael Bolton has conquered audiences worldwide with his powerful ballads and heartfelt love songs. The man with the soulful sound is now using his voice to support the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) in its work to end harmful practices against women and girls, such as Female Genital Mutilation and child marriage. Dianne Penn [...]

17 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 16 March 2016 (PM)

Yemen-WFP-16MAR16-350

Food voucher scheme launched in war-torn Yemen A food voucher scheme was launched in Yemen on Wednesday in an effort to reach a million food-insecure civilians across the country by the end of 2016. The World Food Programme (WFP) initiative will begin by assisting 120,000 people living in the capital, Sana'a. Each voucher provides a [...]

16 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Choosing the next UN Chief: "We are in uncharted waters"

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"We are in uncharted waters" that’s the assessment of the President of the UN General Assembly on the appointment of the world’s most senior diplomat, the next man or woman, to head the United Nations. According to the organization's Charter, the UN chief is appointed by the General Assembly following the recommendation of the Security [...]

16 Mar 2016 | Posted in 70th General Assembly, Today's Features | Read More »

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Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon movie star joins UN to fight poverty

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The star of the Oscar-winning movie Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon has committed to working with the UN Development Programme (UNDP) to fight global poverty and the inequality between men and women. The Malaysian-born actress, Michelle Yeoh, will focus on raising awareness and mobilizing support for the recently launched Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). She was unveiled [...]

16 Mar 2016 | Posted in Sustainable Development Goals, Today's Features | Read More »

Child marriage: Yemeni film maker tells "the truth from inside"

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A former child bride from Yemen is bringing the plight of these young girls to the big screen. Khadija al-Salami is the director of 'I am Nojoom, Age 10 and Divorced.' The film is based on the true story of a girl who was forced to marry a man in his 30s. Isabelle Dupuis caught [...]

16 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 16 March 2016 (AM)

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Time for  Canada "to step up" says new leader at UN Headquarters It's time for Canada to "to step up" and play a bigger role at the United Nations, according to its new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau. In his first official visit to UN headquarters after winning election late last year, the 44-year-old Liberal leader [...]

16 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Damascus: Russian military could redeploy if needed

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The Syrian government has said that the Russian military could return "again and again and again" to the country if necessary, as peace talks entered their third day at the UN in Geneva. Speaking to journalists on Wednesday, Syria's negotiator Bashar Jaafari insisted that the Russian announcement to reduce operations in the war-torn country had [...]

16 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Non-profit founded by student teaches self-defence to girls

PoojaF

Girls and women who take self-defence classes are more empowered and better prepared to protect themselves. So says Pooja Nagpal, an eighteen year old student from the United States, founder of the non-profit organization For a Change, Defend, which aims to stop gender violence. She spoke at a special session on bringing girls to the [...]

16 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Russia urged to amend list of jobs women cannot perform

Delegates attend a meeting of the Geneva-based Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). Photo: Jean-Marc Ferré (file)

The decision to prohibit a Russian woman from working at the helm of a boat has been criticized by a UN human rights body. Svetlana Medvedeva, a trained navigation officer, had been hired by a private company but was later turned down because her employment would contravene legislation on jobs that are off-limits to women. [...]

16 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Syria opposition calls second day of UN talks “constructive”

Opening of the Intra-Syrian Talks with Staffan de Mistura, Special Envoy for Syria  and Bashar Ja'afari representative of the Syrian Arab Republic to the UN in NYC, Geneva, 2016.03.14. UN Photo/Anne-Laure Lechat.

Talks to decide the future of Syria continued into a second day at the UN in Geneva with the issues of detainees and continuing humanitarian concerns emerging as key sticking points for the opposition, it has emerged. Describing their meeting with UN Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura as "constructive", the main opposition’s High Negotiation Committee [...]

15 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 15 March 2016 (PM)

Stéphane Dujarric. UN Photo/Evan Schneider

  "Deep disappointment and anger" from UN chief over Morocco demonstration The UN Secretary-General has expressed his "deep disappointment and anger" over demonstrations mobilized against him in Morocco on Sunday, in connection with the dispute over Western Sahara. Speaking on behalf of Ban Ki-moon, his spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric said that Mr Ban had met the [...]

15 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Unhealthy environment behind 1 in 4 global deaths

An estimated 12.6 million deaths each year are attributable to unhealthy environments. Photo: World Bank/John Hogg

Nearly a quarter of all deaths globally are the result of people living or working in unhealthy environments, the World Health Organization (WHO) has said. That's more than 12.6 million deaths each year from polluted air, water and soil, climate change and chemical exposure. The UN agency is calling on countries to invest in strategies [...]

15 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

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15 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

"Tragic and shameful" that Syrians can't go home, says Jolie-Pitt

A scene from the crowded Za'atri refugee camp in Jordan hosting many Syrian refugees. Photo: UNHCR/J. Kohler

Syria's war has reached another "grim milestone," as the country marks five years of war, according to the UN refugee agency UNHCR. An estimated 5 million Syrians have found refuge in neighboring Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq. UNHCR's Special Envoy, Angelina Jolie-Pitt spent Tuesday visiting refugees in Lebanon. Jocelyne Sambira has the story. Duration: 2’17″

15 Mar 2016 | Posted in Celebrity Partners, Today's Features | Read More »

"Survival" of Afghan government this year will be an "achievement"

Nicholas Haysom. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas

If the Afghan National Unity Government survives 2016, it will be a significant "achievement". That's the assessment of the head of the UN mission to the country (UNAMA), Nicholas Haysom, briefing the UN Security Council on Tuesday. The Council adopted a resolution renewing UNAMA's mandate for an additional year. Matthew Wells reports. Mr Haysom said [...]

15 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 15 March 2016 (AM) – Geneva

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Syria envoy "hopes Russia withdrawal" will help peace talks Russia's surprise decision to reduce military operations in Syria could help the peace talks now entering their second day in Geneva, UN negotiator Staffan de Mistura has said. Speaking on Tuesday, de Mistura's spokesperson, Ahmad Fawzi, said the move by Russian Federation President Vladmir Putin was [...]

15 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Syria envoy "hopes Russia withdrawal" will help talks

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Russia's surprise decision to reduce military operations in Syria could help the peace talks now entering their second day in Geneva, UN negotiator Staffan de Mistura has said. In a statement delivered on Tuesday, de Mistura described the move as "significant" and said he hoped it would have a positive impact on the negotiations. Here's [...]

15 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Soap opera puts stunting in the spotlight

Villagers in Laos watching 'My Happy Family,' a soap opera that teaches proper nutrition. (Screen grab from IFAD TV)

A television soap opera is teaching parents in Laos how to protect their children from stunting. Chronic under-nutrition is a major issue in the Asian country, resulting in half the children there being too short for their age. The soap opera was developed through a project by the government and the UN's International Fund for [...]

15 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 14 March 2016 (PM)

UN peacekeepers on patrol in Kidal, Mali. Photo: MINUSMA/Blagoje Grujic

  Investigation underway in Mali as UN peacekeeper kills colleagues An investigation is underway in Mali after a UN peacekeeper shot and killed two colleagues. A third peacekeeper was injured. The UN Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) said the incident happened on Saturday at the Tessalit camp in the Kidal region in the north of the [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

UN Daily News 14 March 2016

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14 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

News in Brief 14 March 2016 (AM)

Ismael Gaspar Martins. UN Photo/Mark Garten.

  Iran missile tests has affected "trust" A ballistic missile test in Iran last week has negatively affected the trust between the country and the international community. That's according to the President of the Security Council for March, the ambassador of Angola to the United Nations. The United Kingdom, a permanent member of the Council [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Illicit drugs lead to "lives lost and needless suffering"

Opening of the 59th Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) in Vienna, Austria. Photo: UNIS Vienna

The use of illicit drugs around the world has led to the loss of life and "needless suffering," according to the chief of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Experts are meeting in Vienna over the next week at the Commission on Narcotic Drugs to discuss how best to respond to the global [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Net "closing in" on North Korea's Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un: UN

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The government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) is still inflicting crimes against humanity against its people but the international community is "closing in" on those responsible, a UN investigator said Monday. Speaking at the United Nations in Geneva, Special Rapporteur Marzuki Darusman said that it was time for the regime's leaders to [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Syria “No Place for Children”

In Aleppo, Syria, four-year-old Esraa and her brother Waleed, three, sit on the ground near a shelter for internally displaced persons. Photo: UNICEF/UN013175/Al-Issa

Five years of conflict in Syria has affected more than eight million children, or roughly 80 per cent of the country's youngest citizens, according to the latest report from the UN children's fund, UNICEF. The report, No Place for Children, also reveals that one in three Syrian children have been born since the start of [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Struggle" not over until all women's rights are respected

Marching in New York City for gender equality. Photo: UN Women/J Carrier

The international community will continue the struggle to ensure that the human rights of all women are respected; that's according to the UN Secretary-General. Ban Ki-moon was speaking at the opening of the annual Commission on the Status of Women, a two week meeting at UN headquarters which this year is focusing on women's empowerment [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"Moment of truth" for Syria as talks recommence

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Talks to decide Syria's future have started and are the "moment of truth" for its people and those who want the five-year-old conflict to end, UN negotiator Staffan de Mistura said Monday. Speaking at the UN in Geneva, which is hosting the talks, de Mistura acknowledged that "much distance" remains between the warring parties. But [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Five years on, 1 in 3 Syrian children has known only war

Syrian children shelter in the doorway of a house, amid gunfire and shelling, in a city affected by the conflict. Photo: UNICEF/NYHQ2012-0218/Alessio Romenzi

Five years into the civil conflict Syria, one in three children there has known only war, according to the UN Children's Fund. That's around 3.7 million children whose lives have been shaped by violence, fear and displacement. Around 250,000 people have been killed and some 13.5 million inside the country need relief assistance. Jocelyne Sambira [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

#UNSGcandidates promotes public input in process for new UN chief

General Assembly Hall . UN Photo/Loey Felipe

The race is on for the new UN Secretary-General and for the first time in the organization's 70 years of existence people everywhere can get involved. The UN is encouraging civil society to submit questions which may be put to candidates when they begin meeting with General Assembly President Mogens Lykketoft starting in April. Susan [...]

14 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Women's commission focuses on realization of development goals

Antonio de Aguiar Patriota, Chair of the 60th session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).  UN File Photo/Loey Felipe

How can women best contribute to sustainable development? That's the question being asked at the 60th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) which begins at the United Nations in New York on Monday. Delegates from across the world are due to spend two weeks discussing the involvement of women and men [...]

13 Mar 2016 | Posted in From the Ambassador, Today's Features | Read More »

South Sudan: War forcing children to take on parental roles

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Children from South Sudan have had to take on adult responsibilities in refugee camps, according to the United Nations. Many are unaccompanied children who have fled to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and who have lost their parents in the civil conflict that has beset the country over the past two years. The [...]

13 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN votes to end sex abuse by its troops

Samantha Power, US Ambassador to the UN. UN File Photo/Rick Bajornas.

A set of special measures aimed at ending impunity for sex crimes by UN troops serving in peacekeeping mission has been adopted. The resolution allows for the repatriation of military and police units where there is credible evidence of widespread and systematic abuse. The UN will have the ability to vet all uniformed personnel for [...]

11 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 11 March 2016 (PM)

A young boy sits in front of a destroyed building in Homs, Syria. Photo: WFP/Abeer Etefa

  "Frail glimmers of hope" in Syria five years into the conflict There have been signs of momentum and "fragile glimmers of hope" in the past few weeks in Syria, the heads of UN humanitarian agencies have said. Fewer bombs are falling, humanitarian access has opened up in some places and negotiators from all sides [...]

11 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Towards a new urban agenda

Joan Clos.  UN Photo/Loey Felipe

By the middle of the century, the majority of the world's citizens—four out of five people—could be living in towns or cities. Creating a so-called "New Urban Agenda" which promotes sustainable city development is one of the goals of a UN conference to be held later this year in Ecuador. Joan Clos is Executive Director [...]

11 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN Daily News 11 March 2016

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11 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Adolescent girls should be free to define their lives: UN

High-level forum on ÒInvesting in adolescent girls to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable DevelopmentÓ

Girls should be free to define their lives and enjoy their rights, the head of the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) said on Friday. The UN believes that the 600 million adolescent girls in the world today represent a huge untapped potential and that they can help drive economic growth. Jocelyne Sambira reports. World leaders and [...]

11 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

South Sudan "scorched earth" policy revealed in UN probe

Women and children have suffered devastating attacks in South Sudan's Unity State. Photo: UNICEF/South Sudan/Sebastian Rich

South Sudan's government is responsible for a multitude of horrendous human rights violations which include a so-called "scorched earth" policy against civilians involving rape, murder and pillaging, the UN said Friday. In a report published by the UN Human Rights Office, OHCHR, investigators recorded more than 1,300 rapes in one state over a five-month period. [...]

11 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 11 March 2016 (AM) – Geneva

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Alert over malnourished children in South Sudan as rights abuses unveiled Tens of thousands of children are at risk in South Sudan because of ongoing conflict and a critical lack of funding, the UN has announced. The alert follows the publication of a new UN report on Friday detailing horrific abuses sanctioned by the government. [...]

11 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Upholding justice in terror cases a huge challenge, judges say

Edmond Mulet. UN Photo/Mark Garten

Judges face many challenges in bringing terrorists to justice, a committee in charge of counter-terrorism at the UN Security Council has said. Investigating and prosecuting terrorist cases presents a number of barriers for the criminal justice systems of many countries. Jocelyne Sambira reports. The obstacles encountered in upholding justice in terror cases range from collecting [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 10 March 2016 (PM)

Rubble from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant caused by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Photo: IAEA/Gill Tudor

  Japan's Fukushima nuclear meltdown remembered The 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident in Japan has taught the world that our dependence on technology is a "double-edged" sword, the UN chief said on the fifth anniversary of the disaster. A massive earthquake triggered a tsunami which in turn caused an accident at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

UN Global Perspective: focus on children of Islamic State, war in Syria and gender parity in films

An increasing number of people, including families with children and the elderly, have encountered deadly ambushes as they try to escape areas controlled by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). Photo: UNAMI

"Crisis of an entire generation" indoctrinated by ISIL: new report A new report endorsed by the UN that examines child indoctrination by the ISIL terrorist group describes the phenomenon as the "crisis of an entire generation". The UN cultural organization, UNESCO, contributed to the report, Children and the Islamic State which has been published by [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Global Perspective | Read More »

"Good riddance" and nostalgia over UN building demolition

The demolition site of the North Lawn Building, with the UN Secretariat in the background. Credit: Werner Schmidt/UN

The North Lawn at UN Headquarters, which was replaced six years ago with a temporary building, should be restored to its former glory by next spring. That's according to the man in charge of the demolition and restoration project, Assistant Secretary-General Stephen Cutts. Work is well underway to tear down the North Lawn Building, which [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Trust fund earmarked for victims of sex abuse by UN personnel

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon delivers remarks to the Security Council meeting on sexual exploitation and abuse. UN Photo/Mark Garten

Measures aimed at stamping out sexual abuse by UN personnel worldwide are being put in place, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the Security Council on Thursday. Mr Ban said 99 allegations were reported across the UN system worldwide last year. The majority—69—were at UN peacekeeping missions, including those in the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

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News in Brief 10 March 2016 (AM)

Urban-search-and-rescue members of USAID's Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) at work in Nepal. Photo: USAID's Disaster Assistance Response Team

  Asia-Pacific world's "most disaster-prone" region The Asia-Pacific region has been dubbed the world's "most disaster prone region" by a new UN report. Half of the world's 344 disasters in 2015 took place in the area, resulting in over 16,000 deaths with 59 million people affected. The UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Rights "window-dressing" is widespread, warns UN's Zeid

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The protection of people's rights should not be a "tick-the-box" paper exercise for the international community, the United Nations' human rights chief has warned. Speaking in Geneva on Thursday, UN High Commissioner Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein highlighted abuses in nearly 50 countries and called for states to do more to bring about "real change" on [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

UN and Africa: focus on South Sudan, women in Algeria and banking in Tanzania

The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) for South Sudan and head of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan, Ellen Margrethe Loej, visited Malakal on March 8, 2016 to assess the situation and to meet with stakeholders on the ground, including community leaders within the protection site and Malakal town. UN Photo/Isaac Gideon

UN to investigate deadly incident at civilian site in South Sudan A full-investigation is due to be held into a deadly incident last month at a UN compound sheltering civilians, in Malakal, South Sudan. At least 18 were killed and dozens injured following inter-communal violence at the protection of civilians site run by the UN [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN and Africa | Read More »

UN Gender Focus: gender equal world, refugees and “comfort women”

Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown

"Step it up" for a gender-equal world, urges UN Women chief Heads of State and Government have pledged to crack some of the barriers to closing the gender equality gaps in their countries. UN Women, the UN agency which focuses on gender issues, has urged world leaders to "Step it up" so that women and [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Gender Focus | Read More »

Bringing justice and support to ISIL survivors in Iraq

Francisco Motta. Photo: UN

Documenting crimes committed by the terrorist group ISIL, or Daesh, is among the most painful tasks of the human rights section at the UN's mission in Iraq, UNAMI, says the man in charge of that office. Francesco Motta and his team have gathered testimony from people who have escaped ISIL's control and have helped to [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Core rights threatened by counter-extremism bid, says UN terror expert

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The global push to counter violent extremism carries "hidden risks" which threaten fundamental liberties, the UN Human Rights Council heard Thursday. United Nations Special Rapporteur on Terrorism, Ben Emmerson, said he feared that the recent rise of initiatives at a national level are too simplistic and potentially overly repressive. Here's Daniel Johnson in Geneva. Speaking [...]

10 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 09 March 2016 (PM)

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  "How to guide" for peaceful protests presented by UN experts A "how to guide" on avoiding an escalation or outbreak of violence between protesters and police forces during demonstrations has been issued by UN experts. The Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns and the Special Rapporteur on the rights to [...]

9 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

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9 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

UN to investigate deadly incident at civilian site in South Sudan

The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) for South Sudan and head of the United Nations Mission in South Sudan, Ellen Margrethe Loej, visited Malakal on March 8, 2016 to assess the situation and to meet with stakeholders on the ground, including community leaders within the protection site and Malakal town. UN Photo/Isaac Gideon

Investigations will be held into a deadly incident last month at a UN compound sheltering civilians in the city of Malakal in South Sudan. At least 18 people were reportedly killed and dozens injured following inter-communal violence at the protection of civilians site run by the UN mission in the country, UNMISS. The so-called POC [...]

9 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Countries in need of food aid on rise, 27 in Africa

In Gordil, Central African Republic, after three years of conflict, for children under-five, their bodies weakened from malnutrition, the biggest killers were not bullets but instead malaria, respiratory infections and diarrhoea. Photo: OCHA/Gemma Cortes

An estimated 34 countries are currently in urgent need of food aid, because of drought, flooding and conflict, a new UN report has found. Twenty-seven of those countries are in Africa. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) released its annual Crop Prospects and Food Situation report on Wednesday. Jocelyne Sambira has the story. The El [...]

9 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Syria talks set to begin in Geneva as fragile truce holds

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In Syria, efforts to deliver desperately needed aid are continuing, but several areas are still out of bounds to humanitarian convoys the UN said Wednesday, as the country's warring parties prepare to arrive in Geneva for peace talks. UN negotiator Staffan de Mistura said that he was prepared to talk "with whoever is arriving" to [...]

9 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Clear link" between criminalization of minorities and abuse, says rights expert

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The discrimination and abuse of women, girls and other minorities should be seen for what it is: torture, a UN human rights expert said Wednesday. Juan Mendez, who's the UN Special Rapporteur on torture, said that the suffering of women and girls, along with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people continues to be regarded [...]

9 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"Crisis of an entire generation" indoctrinated by ISIL

An increasing number of people, including families with children and the elderly, have encountered deadly ambushes as they try to escape areas controlled by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). Photo: UNAMI

A new report endorsed by the UN that examines child indoctrination by the ISIL terrorist group represents the "crisis of an entire generation". That's according to the senior researcher launching the report in the UK parliament on Wednesday, called Children and the Islamic State. The UN cultural organization, UNESCO, contributed to the report, from counter-extremism [...]

9 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Banking on women-owned businesses in Tanzania

Women in Tanzania. UN Photo/Evan Schneider.

A programme that supports banks in Tanzania which loan money to women business owners "works very well" for all sides. That's the assessment of Beng’i Issa, Executive Secretary at the National Economic Empowerment Council in the East African country. Her organization recently set aside one billion Shillings, or more than US$450,000, as a guarantee to [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

New research links Zika infection to birth defects: UN

Margaret Chan. UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

New research has shown a strong link between Zika infection and foetal malformations and neurological disorders, the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) has announced. Dr Margaret Chan convened an emergency committee on the issue under the International Health Regulations, an international agreement between 196 countries to work for global health security. Jocelyne Sambira [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 08 March 2016 (PM)

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) addresses a joint press conference with Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany, in Berlin. UN Photo/Evan Schneider

    Germany's handling of refugee crisis praised by UN Chief Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel has shown what the UN chief described as "great statesmanship and compassion" in dealing with the refugee issue facing her country and others in Europe. An unprecedented number of people are arriving in Europe after fleeing conflict and insecurity in [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

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Dangerous to leave issue of human rights "undecided" in Burundi

Pablo de Grieff.  UN Photo/Amanda Voisard.

It would be dangerous to leave the issue of human rights "undecided" in Burundi, a member of a UN independent investigation panel on Burundi (UNIB) has said. Pablo de Greiff, the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence ended an eight-day visit to the East African nation, along [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Greater gender parity a "win-win" for society

The Nepalese Formed Police Unit and UN Police contingent from the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) received awards at the medal parade ceremony in Juba. Ellen Margrethe Løj (centre left), pins a medal to an UNMISS officer. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine (02/09/2015).

The United Nations is facing a battle when it comes to peacekeeping, but not one that involves weapons. The organization continues to try to get countries to send more women soldiers and police officers to serve at its operations worldwide. Ellen Margarethe Løj, head of the UN Mission in South Sudan, (UNMISS), says gender parity [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Women's representation in senior UN posts at "historic high"

Opening of the 59th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW59 09/03/2015) UN Photo/Loey Felipe

A record number of women have been appointed to high-level positions within the UN, proving how the best person for the job is often a woman. That's what the UN Secretary-General said in his message for International Women's Day 2016 observed annually on 8 March. Jocelyne Sambira reports Ban Ki-moon has signed nearly 150 letters [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Local farm production in Latin America can create "virtuous cycle"

José Graziano da Silva. Photo: FAO/Alessandra Benedetti

The local production of food in Latin America can create a "virtuous cycle" which will benefit farmers, the economy and help fight obesity in children; that's according to the head of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) at a recent meeting of experts in Mexico. Nutrition experts discussed how to make sure that the [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 08 March 2016 (AM) – Geneva

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EU refugee deal with Turkey must come with guarantees, warns UN Any deal to fix the European migrant crisis that involves mass returns of refugees to Turkey needs to include assurances about their safety, the UN said Tuesday. Speaking after early details emerged of a plan to return tens of thousands of asylum-seekers from the [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

The fight for women's rights continues in South Sudan

JMEC Chairperson visits Bentiu

Women in South Sudan continue to fight for their rights in what is considered "one of the worst" regions in the world to be a woman. Kasumi Nishigaya, Chief of gender affairs for the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS), describes the situation there as "mixed" although she's hopeful it will improve. South Sudan currently [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Language holds key to migrant success in Europe

UNHCR staffer helps refugees and migrants to register at the local police station on Kos Island in Greece. Photo: UNHCR/S. Baltagiannis

Acquiring language skills is a big challenge for migrants and refugees entering Europe but it's also the key to success, a renowned US economist says. A new immigrant who does not speak the local language misses out on job opportunities and earns less, according to Professor Barry Chiswick who studies labour markets and immigration at [...]

8 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 07 March 2016 (PM)

Children in Kaga-Bandoro, Central African Republic (CAR). UN Photo/Catianne Tijerina

  Children in CAR victims of "relentless" violence: UN Children in the Central African Republic (CAR) have been victims of "relentless violence" in 2013 and 2014, a new UN report has found. The African country has been plagued by successive waves of intercommunal violence fuelled and manipulated by political leaders. The UN has documented the [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Japan needs to do more on "comfort women" deal with South Korea

Delegates during a meeting of the 56th session of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) in Geneva, Switzerland. UN Photo/Pierre Albouy (16/10/2013)

Japan's agreement to settle a long-standing dispute with South Korea concerning wartime sex slaves needs to do more for the victims, a UN rights panel said Monday. Independent rights expert Ismat Jahan, who sits on the UN women's rights committee known by its acronym CEDAW, said that the "rights, demands and views" of so-called "comfort [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Targetting of infrastructure "unacceptable reality" in Syria

In the Tishreen camp for displaced persons in Aleppo, Syria, a boy carries a jerrycan he filled at a water tank built by OXFAM with UNICEF support. Photo: UNICEF/Razan Rashidi

The intentional targeting of infrastructure is an "unacceptable reality" of war in Syria, according to the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF). The supply of clean water to the northern city of Aleppo has just been reestablished after it was deliberately cut by one of the warring parties. Two million people there have been drawing raw water [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

“Step it up" for a gender-equal world, urges UN Women chief

Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown

"Step it up" so that women and men, boys and girls have equal rights by 2030, the head of a UN agency focusing on gender issues has urged world leaders. The call was made ahead of International Women's Day 2016, observed annually on 8 March. Heads of State and Government have pledged to crack some [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Farmers striving to feed drought-affected Ethiopia

FAO's irrigation and income diversification projects have become instrumental in tackling the negative impacts of El Niño- induced drought for pastoral and agro-pastoral communities in Afar Region. 08 February 2016, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Photo: FAO/Tamiru Legesse

Time is running out on farmers and herders in Ethiopia who are struggling to feed a country caught in the grip of a major drought. That warning comes from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) which says successive crop failures mean that 10.2 million people there are not getting enough to eat. With Ethiopia's main [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

More female police needed in peace operations, urges UN Chief

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (centre left) on his way to a meeting with Ramtane Lamamra (centre right), Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Algeria, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Algiers. UN Photo/Evan Schneider

More female police officers are needed to serve in United Nations and African Union peace operations, the UN Secretary-General said in an appeal to African Chiefs of Police on Monday in Algiers, the capital of Algeria. Ban Ki-moon said the move would help prevent and address sexual violence in conflict, which disproportionally affects women and [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

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Women's wage gap could last another 70 years, says ILO

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Women are losing ground in the world of work and it could take more than 70 years to reach pay parity with men, the UN said Monday. In a report published by the UN's International Labour Organization (ILO), this gender inequality persists across a wide range of professions, all over the world. According to the [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 07 March 2016 (AM)

Yukiya Amano. Photo Credit: Dean Calma / IAEA

Iran must commit to nuclear deal "for many years": UN Iran has to implement its nuclear-related commitments for "many years to come," the head of the UN's nuclear agency told its Board of Governors on Monday. A Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was signed last July between Iran and six world powers, including the [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Women still “struggling” to reach high-level positions

Women leaders at the POC site in Malakal, Upper Nile State, South Sudan. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine

The celebration of International Women's Day on 8 March should remind the world that there is "still a long way to go" before gender equality is fully achieved. That's the opinion of Maria Noel Vaeza, Director of the Programme Division at UN Women, the UN's gender entity, which is calling on countries to step up [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Light ladies" help resolve Pakistan energy crisis

Fiza Farhan. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas.

Pakistan's so-called "Light Ladies" are helping power up off-grid villages, becoming real agents of change in their hometowns, a young female executive has said. The initiative is part of the "light a million lives" project of the Buksh Foundation, a microfinance institution. Also known as "Roshna Bibi" in Urdu, the national language of Pakistan, the [...]

7 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Alarming" developments in Libya that could amount to war crimes

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Developments in Libya which the UN Secretary-General has described as "alarming" could amount to war crimes. Ban Ki-moon was speaking to the media in Algiers, the capital of Algeria, following a meeting with the country's Foreign Minister. Daniel Dickinson has more details Libya continues to suffer from instability as two rival governments compete for control [...]

6 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

More women, girls die during disasters than men

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More women than men died during the Indian Ocean Tsunami and Cyclone Gorki in Bangladesh, UN human rights monitors have heard. At a meeting organized by the UN Convention on ending discrimination against women known as CEDAW, experts discussed the scale of the problem and how women and girls could play a greater role in [...]

6 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Plight of Sahrawi refugees "forgotten" by world

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon visits MINURSO peacekeepers during his visit to the Western Sahara region. 5 March, 2016. Photo: UN/spokesperson.

Sahrawi refugees in Algeria say they have been forgotten by the world according to the UN Secretary-General. Speaking after meeting the refugees, Ban Ki-moon said their situation was "unacceptable." Daniel Dickinson has more details. Sahrawi families have been separated for around 40 years after fighting broke out between Morocco and the Polisario Front following the [...]

5 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"Spectacular" progress in Mali

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Mali has made "spectacular progress" over the past years according to the French ambassador to the United Nations. The UN Security Council, of which France is a Permanent Member, is currently in Mali to support the West African country's peace and reconciliation efforts. Daniel Dickinson reports The Malian Government has been seeking to restore stability [...]

5 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Refugees need access to legal systems to move forward

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Refugees from Syria and other areas of conflict need better access to legal systems to move forward with their lives, according to an activist from Jordan. The UN Refugee Agency estimates there are over a half million refugees in Jordan from Syria alone. Samar Muhareb is co-founder and Director of ARDD-Legal Aid, a NGO that [...]

5 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Algerian mothers raising sons to help curb violence against women

March in New York - International Women's Day 2015. File Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown

Algerian mothers are being empowered to raise their sons to reject the use of any violence against women. That's just one of the bold initiatives being taken by the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) inside the north African country, ahead of International Women's Day, celebrated on March 8. Nearly a third of parliamentary seats are held [...]

5 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Development Goals awareness-raising in Algeria, aided by UN chief

Sustainable Development Goals: Setting a New Course for People and Planet. UN Image

A day devoted to raising awareness of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Algeria on Saturday, is receiving a boost thanks to the UN chief. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is due to be on hand to take part in Algeria's first national awareness day, focusing on the 17 SDGs, which were adopted by more than [...]

4 Mar 2016 | Posted in Sustainable Development Goals, Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 04 March 2016 (PM)

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon delivers a keynote address at an event on

Sahel countries should focus on root causes of instability Countries in the Sahel region of Africa need to focus on the root causes of instability. That's what the UN Secretary-General told reporters in Nouakchott, the capital of Mauritania after meeting with the country's president, Mohamed Abdel Aziz. Around 24 million people need aid in the [...]

4 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Lack of electricity keeping Africa “in the dark”

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A lack of electricity is keeping African communities and businesses literally "in the dark" although the continent has enormous energy resources, according to the World Bank. More than 580 million people on the continent do not have access to power and it's one of the biggest constraints to its economic growth. Analysts have estimated that [...]

4 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN Daily News 04 March 2016

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4 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

UN Refugee Agency unveils plan to fix EU migrant crisis

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Europe is "running out of time" on the migrant crisis, the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, warned Friday, before unveiling a plan to help EU member states manage and stabilize the situation. Ahead of a key European Union heads of state meeting on Monday, UNHCR said that tens of thousands of people are now stuck in [...]

4 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

“Protectors” can't be allowed to become “predators”

Blue helmets and uniforms of UN Peacekeepers. UN Photo/Marco Dormino

United Nations peacekeepers can't be allowed to become sexual predators, said the UN field support chief on Friday. Atul Khare was speaking ahead of the launch of the UN Secretary-General's report on special measures being taken to protect those at risk from sexual exploitation and abuse. The UN chief Ban Ki-moon pledged last December to [...]

4 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 04 March 2016 (AM) – Geneva

Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein. Photo: UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

FBI's phones fight with Apple is a "gift" to dictatorships, says UN human rights chief A legal bid by US investigators to force IT giant Apple to unlock data on its phones is a potential risk to people's freedoms all over the world, the UN's top human rights official said Thursday. Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein [...]

4 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Women and girls to become "influencers, not only beneficiaries"

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Investment in women and girls is vital so that they can become involved in and influence issues that affect them directly. That's according to one of the speakers at the recent launch of the new Global Acceleration Instrument on Women, Peace and Security, and Humanitarian Action. The instrument will provide resources to women's civil society [...]

4 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 03 March 2016 (PM)

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  Sudan urged to "fully cooperate" with UN and African Union Sudan's government is being urged to "fully cooperate" with international organizations that are assisting millions of displaced people in Darfur. A recent upsurge in fighting between government forces and a rebel group in the mountainous Jebel Marra area has forced more than 90,000 civilians [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

A million people could die if key Iraqi dam breaks

Lise Grande in a visit to Baharka IDP camp in northern Iraq. UNICEF File Photo

One of the Middle East's largest dams it at risk of a "catastrophic" outburst which could kill up to a million people, a senior UN official in Iraq has confirmed. Lise Grande, Humanitarian Coordinator for the UN Mission in Iraq (UNAMI), said that a devastating break in the Mosul Dam in the north-east of the [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

UN Global Perspective: focus on North Korea, Syria and UN mediators

Stakeout after Security Council meeting on Non-proliferation/Democratic People's Republic of Korea. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

Strongest UN sanctions "in two decades" imposed on North Korea The toughest sanctions regime "in two decades" has been imposed by the United Nations Security Council on the government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, or DPRK. The resolution, which was adopted unanimously, introduces major economic sanctions, in an effort to bring DPRK back [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Global Perspective | Read More »

UN Gender Focus: empowerment of women and girls

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More women, girls die during disasters than men: UN More women than men died during the Indian Ocean Tsunami and Cyclone Gorki in Bangladesh, UN human rights monitors have heard. At a meeting organized by the UN Convention on ending discrimination against women known as CEDAW, experts discussed the scale of the problem and how [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN Gender Focus | Read More »

UN and Africa: focus on Libya, global wildlife trade and Somalia

Martin Kobler. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

Libya "governed by chaos and anarchy" says UN envoy Libya is "governed by chaos and anarchy" and it's going to take time for it to become a functioning state again. That's the view of Martin Kobler, head of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), speaking after he updated the Security Council on conditions inside [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in UN and Africa | Read More »

UN Daily News 03 March 2016

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3 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Yemen: More measures needed to protect civilians

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The UN Security Council has been urged to encourage warring sides in Yemen to return to the negotiating table. The appeal was made by UN Humanitarian Coordinator Stephen O'Brien, who briefed the chamber on Thursday. A year of fighting between rebels and government forces, backed by a Saudi-led coalition, has killed more than 6,000 civilians. [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 03 March 2016 (AM)

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Expert calls on countries to end homelessness Homelessness arises when governments treat housing as a commodity and not a human right. That message comes from Leilani Farha, a UN independent expert on the right to adequate housing. Ms Farha presented her latest report to the Human Rights Council in Geneva on Thursday. She called on [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Libya "governed by chaos and anarchy" says UN envoy

Martin Kobler, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), speaks to journalists following his briefing to the Security Council. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

Libya is "governed by chaos and anarchy" and it's going to take time for it to become a functioning state again. That's the view of Martin Kobler, head of the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), speaking after he updated the Security Council on conditions inside the North African country. Rival political groups and factions [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Syria truce violations are being contained, says UN Special Envoy

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Syria's cessation of hostilities is fragile but holding despite several flare-ups, the UN negotiator who's trying to secure peace in the country, said Thursday. Six days into the truce between the majority of warring parties, Staffan de Mistura said the level of violence has fallen, adding: "just ask the Syrians." And looking ahead to peace [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Universal heritage" is under attack and needs to be protected

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In nations made unstable by armed conflict, artefacts, historical sites, and other items of cultural significance are in danger of being destroyed or stolen by terrorist groups and criminals, according to the United Nations. Art markets, customs offices, and the global community are working with the UN to safeguard cultural heritage during conflict, such as [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Three million civilians “caught up” in Ukraine conflict

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People caught up in the fighting in Ukraine "feel abandoned" amid continuing and major concerns about serious human rights abuses there that reportedly include arbitrary killings and torture, a UN report indicated Thursday. More than three million civilians live in the conflict zone in the east of the country, where heavy weaponry and tanks are [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

More than 1,000 game wardens murdered protecting wildlife

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Over 1,000 game wardens have been killed in the line of duty in the past ten years, the head of the UN-backed treaty that regulates global wildlife trade, CITES, has confirmed. In the fight against poaching and the illegal trafficking of wildlife, front line defenders such as conservation officers, customs officials and game wardens are [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Most hearing loss “can be prevented,” says WHO

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Identifying children with hearing loss has never been more important as the condition is preventable in most cases, the World Health Organization (WHO) said Thursday. Making the announcement, the UN agency said that new data showed that six in 10 children could be helped if identified soon enough. The message is part of WHO's message for [...]

3 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

News in Brief 02 March 2016 (PM)

Security Council unanimously adopts resolution imposing additional sanctions on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). UN Photo/Mark Garten

New sanctions send "clear message" to DPRK New economic sanctions against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) send a "clear message" that the country must fully comply with its international obligations, the UN Secretary-General said on Wednesday. Ban Ki-moon has welcomed the unanimous adoption of a Security Council resolution in response to the DPRK's [...]

2 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

UN Daily News 02 March 2016

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2 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

News in Brief 02 March 2016 (AM)

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Iraq urged to upgrade maternal health services Only one-third of hospitals in Iraq meet international standards on emergency obstetric and neonatal care. That's according to a report launched on Wednesday which also finds that no health centres in the country abide by the international norms. The study was published by Iraq's Ministry of Health and [...]

2 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Strongest UN sanctions “in two decades” imposed on North Korea

Stakeout after Security Council meeting on Non-proliferation/Democratic People's Republic of Korea. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

The toughest sanctions regime "in two decades" has been imposed by the United Nations Security Council on the government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, or DPRK. The resolution, which was adopted unanimously, introduces major economic sanctions, in an effort to bring DPRK back to the negotiating table over its nuclear and ballistic weapons [...]

2 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

We must push for mine-free world, says former UN chief Kofi Annan

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The push for a mine-free world has come a long way since a global treaty banning the weapons came into force in 1999, but the time has come to make one last collective effort, Kofi Annan said Wednesday. In a message to the First International Pledging Conference for the Implementation of the Anti-Personnel Mine Ban [...]

2 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

"Desperate" migrant situation may become humanitarian crisis in Greece

Babar Baloch at the border between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Photo: UNHCR

A build-up of migrants and refugees on the border between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia could turn into a humanitarian crisis, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) is warning. Around 9,000 people have gathered at the Idomeni camp, mainly Syrians but also Afghans and Iraqis. More are arriving every day. They're attempting to [...]

2 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Sixteen million girls shut out of the classroom: UNESCO

Mariam Soumaguel is a teacher for first-year class at Alpha Moya School, in Timbuktu, Mali. She contributes to build a future for conflict-affected children and a peaceful and equitable Mali, through education. Photo: UNICEF/UNI203065/Dicko

Twice as many girls as boys will never set foot in a classroom despite global efforts to close the gender gap in education. That means nearly 16 million girls worldwide between the ages of six and 11 will never get the chance to learn how to read or write, if current trends continue. The finding [...]

2 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"War on drugs" must give way to "balanced and humane approach"

A poppy field in Afghanistan. Photo: UNODC

Neither the failed "war on drugs" approach nor full legalization is the right way to curb drugs-related crime and uphold international laws on drug control. That's the view of Werner Sipp, President of the International Narcotics Control Board, speaking ahead of their 2015 Annual Report published on Wednesday. He said that a "balanced and humane approach" was needed to [...]

2 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

South Sudan refugee children in Ethiopia get a chance at an education

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Hundreds and thousands of school age South Sudanese children living as refugees in Ethiopia are being given a chance to get an education. The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has opened schools in the Kule camp located in the Gambela region of Western Ethiopia. More than 270,000 refugees from South Sudan were already being hosted in [...]

2 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Camp for Syrian refugees in Jordan celebrates 5,000 safe births

Baby Rima was the 5,000th child born at the Zaatari refugee camp. Photo: UNFPA Jordan.

The largest refugee camp in the Middle East is celebrating a milestone: the safe delivery of more than 5,000 babies since 2013. A girl called Rima, who came into the world just over a week ago, was the 5,000th baby born at the Zaatari Camp in Jordan. The camp is home to nearly 80,000 people [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

Displaced of Myanmar "hopeful" despite "appalling" living conditions

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People displaced by conflict in Myanmar are "hopeful" for the future despite the "appalling" conditions in which many of them live. That's the assessment of the UN's director of humanitarian operations who has just returned from a visit to the Asian country. Since 2011, more than 240,000 people have been displaced in Myanmar, mainly in [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

News in Brief 01 March 2016 (PM)

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Syria peace talks resume next Wednesday Peace talks aimed at ending the conflict in Syria will resume next week, UN envoy Staffan de Mistura announced on Tuesday. The UN-sponsored negotiations which began in early February in Geneva were temporarily suspended days later. The process saw members of the Syrian government and opposition holding so-called "proximity [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

Agencies concerned about "dire" food situation in the CAR

In Gordil, Central African Republic, after three years of conflict, for children under-five, their bodies weakened from malnutrition, the biggest killers were not bullets but instead malaria, respiratory infections and diarrhoea. Photo: OCHA/Gemma Cortes

Three years of conflict and displacement have contributed to what two UN agencies are calling the "dire" food situation in the Central African Republic. Over two million people, that's half of the population, are facing hunger. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP) say multiple poor harvests and price hikes, [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

UN Daily News 01 March 2016

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News in Brief 01 March 2016 (AM) – Geneva

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Europe urged to "wake up" on refugees' issue Europe's inaction on refugees has brought it to the brink of a "self-inflicted humanitarian crisis", the UN said Tuesday, warning governments to "wake up" to the issue once and for all. As thousands of people continue to arrive in Greece every day, the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in | Read More »

1 in 8 people living with HIV denied health care: UN

Zero Discrimination Day is an opportunity to join together against discrimination and celebrate everyone's right to live a full and productive life with dignity. Source: UNAIDS

One in eight people living with HIV is being denied health care because of the stigma associated with the virus, according to the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). There have also been cases where HIV-positive women were forcibly sterilized or their pregnancies terminated. On World Zero Discrimination Day observed 1 March, the UN [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

Russia thanked for "significant role" in recent progress on Syria

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (right) during the inauguration of the renovated Russian Room at the Palais des Nations with Sergey Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation (left). UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré

Russia's diplomatic contributions aimed at bringing an end to the Syrian crisis have been praised by the UN Secretary-General. This follows a meeting between Ban Ki-moon and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Geneva on Tuesday. Dianne Penn reports. Mr Ban thanked Mr Lavrov for his "significant role" in achieving recent progress on Syria, according [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

The Lid is On: Oscar-nominated “Brooklyn” proves perfect platform for UN Radio podcast

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The decision by the star of Oscar-nominated movie, Brooklyn, to accept the UN's invitation to visit, provided the perfect opportunity for UN Radio to pilot its first full-fledged podcast. The moving story about one young woman's migration from small-town Ireland to Brooklyn, New York, in the early 1950s, led to a screening and discussion on [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Celebrity Partners, Today's Features | Read More »

Embrace diversity on Zero Discrimination Day

Zero Discrimination Day is celebrated 1 March. Promotional Image: UNAIDS

People worldwide are being encouraged to embrace diversity, respect differences and stand for fair and just societies. The appeal is being made by the United Nations in support of Zero Discrimination Day, observed this Tuesday, 1 March. People continue to be treated unfairly because of their gender, nationality, age, ethnic origin, sexual orientation or religion. [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's News | Read More »

"Listen to the other": Divan orchestra honoured by UN

Maestro Daniel Barenboim, pianist and conductor and the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra during a concert in Geneva in 2015. UN File Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

A ground-breaking orchestra which unites Israeli and Arab musicians "has learned to listen to the other" and play together as one, despite their cultural differences. That's the key lesson of the success of the West-East Divan Orchestra, according to its world-renowned conductor, and concert pianist, Daniel Barenboim. He was speaking at a ceremony in which [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

60,000 children facing death in Somalia

Peter de Clercq, UN humanitarian coordinator in Somalia, at the UNTV studios in New York. Photo: UN Radio/Daniel Dickinson

Some 60,000 children are facing death in Somalia because of a lack of aid; that's according to the UN's humanitarian coordinator in the Horn of Africa Country. Political instability, recurrent droughts and even flooding means that almost five million people, or half of Somalia's population, require some sort of assistance. The UN says it needs [...]

1 Mar 2016 | Posted in Today's Features | Read More »

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