News in Brief 09 May 2016 (PM)

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Special Advisor on the Prevention of Genocide Adama Dieng. UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

"Calculated attacks" against civilians in Syria condemned

Attacks against civilians and civilian installations in Syria have been described as "indiscriminate and seemingly calculated" by the UN genocide prevention adviser.

Adama Dieng expressed outrage over the incidents in a statement released on Monday, responding to the deadliest two weeks since a ceasefire came into effect on 27 February.

Here's the UN Spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric.

"The Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, Adama Dieng, said today that in the past two weeks, there were at least six attacks on medical facilities in different parts of the Syrian conflict by different parties to the conflict in the north-western governorate of Aleppo alone. He said that the latest attacks reflect the continued blatant disrespect of international humanitarian law by all parties to the conflict, and may constitute a war crime. Mr. Dieng warned that the international community cannot allow the perpetrators of flagrant violations of international humanitarian law and human rights to enjoy impunity."

Since the beginning of 2016, the UN and its partners have reached more than 780,000 people in need in besieged, hard-to-reach areas and across conflict lines.

Many have been reached more than once.

The UN continues to call for unconditional, unimpeded and sustained access to all 4.6 million people in besieged and hard-to-reach locations in Syria.

Killing of humanitarian worker in DRC condemned

The killing of a humanitarian worker from the NGO Heal Africa in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has been condemned by the UN.

The worker was caught in crossfire Friday in Kitchanga, in the North Kivu province.

The security environment is deteriorating in North Kivu, affecting both civilians and the UN agencies and NGOs trying to support them.

Rein Paulsen, head of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, OCHA, said the tragic death of the young lawyer is "the sobering reminder of the risks faced by aid workers who make sacrifices to provide life-saving assistance to vulnerable communities".

This is the second death of a humanitarian worker this year and the third since 2014.

The first death was in neighbouring South Kivu.

Yemen peace talks resume

Discussions between Yemeni parties in Kuwait have resumed on Monday at the working group level, the UN has said.

The three working groups dealing with political issues, security issues and prisoners held their meetings simultaneously.

The intra-Yemeni peace talks held under the auspices of the UN began on 21 April.

The UN Special Envoy to Yemen, Ould Cheikh Ahmed said the talks were at a crossroads, adding that they were "either moving forward towards peace or back to square one."

The UN has been working to help end conflict in Yemen since it became wracked by political instability in 2011.

Civil war between government forces and Houthi rebels intensified more than a year ago, and more than 2.4 million have been forced from their homes.

Deadly terrorist attack in Egypt condemned

A deadly terrorist attack against police officers in Cairo on Sunday has been condemned by the UN Secretary-General.

Media reports say 8 policemen were killed in an attack claimed by Islamic State militants.

In a statement the UN Chief conveyed his condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government of Egypt.

The United Nations, he said, stands firmly with the people of Egypt in their fight against terrorism.

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.

Duration: 3’31″

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