News in Brief 20 April 2016 (AM)

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Photo: UNODC

Egypt urged to give fair trial to advocates during civil society hearings

Egypt is being urged to give defendants in a judicial hearing against civil society organizations and human rights defenders the right to a fair trial and due process.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon released a statement, ahead of the hearing set to resume on Wednesday.

The case was opened in 2011 following a government probe into foreign funding received by civil society groups operating in the country.

It is commonly referred to as "the case on foreign funding of civil society".

Mr Ban recalled the important role that civil society plays in ensuring that states meet developmental, social and civic objectives and obligations.

He stressed the need for human rights defenders and civil society in general, as well as the media, to work without undue restrictions.

Countries need to invest in social protection for children: UNICEF

Countries are being urged to invest in more effective social protection for children who are falling furthest behind in society, a new UN report says.

UNICEF, the UN Children's Fund, highlights the key challenges facing Central and Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia in meeting these needs.

Social protection is often delivered through income or in-kind support programmes designed to increase access to services such as health, education and nutrition.

Many children today are still living in poor households, deprived of basic necessities, excluded from services, communities and societies, the agency says.

"Social protection is a right and not a handout", says Marie-Pierre Poirier, UNICEF Regional Director.

Yellow fever campaign extended in Angola

A vaccination campaign against yellow fever has been extended in Angola following what the World Health Organization (WHO) has described as the worst outbreak in decades.

Some 250 people have died since December last year.

Over 1900 suspected cases have been reported, the majority in the capital Luanda.

In order to contain the outbreak, nearly 2.15 million people will be vaccinated in densely populated urban districts in Huambo and Benguela provinces over the coming weeks.

WHO's representative in Angola Hernando Agudelo, had this warning for visitors.

"People that come here knowing that Angola is a country that has an epidemic of yellow fever — and coming without a vaccination — those countries are at risk when the people that are coming from those countries return to their countries with yellow fever disease."

Carmen Cuesta Roca, United Nations.

Duration: 2’27″

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