News in Brief 06 October 2016 (PM)

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António Guterres, former UN High Commissioner for Refugees, addresses Member States regarding his candidacy for Secretary-General. UN Photo/Manuel Elias

"Vision, political skills" make Guterres the right choice: UNHCR chief

A combination of "vision, political skills and a deep sense of humanity" make António Guterres the right choice to lead the UN.

That's according to his successor in charge of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), Filippo Grandi.

Mr Guterres ran the agency for a decade beginning in 2005, and Mr Grandi said that having "managed some of the biggest refugee crises of our times," he was well placed to make an "unprecedented push for world peace" as the new Secretary-General.

If confirmed by the UN General Assembly, Mr Guterres will begin work in January, after being formally recommended on Thursday for the top job, by the Security Council.

Calls for calm in Ethiopia following fatal stampede

Following a fatal stampede in an Ethiopian town at the weekend which left dozens dead, the UN Secretary-General has appealed for "calm and restraint."

According to news reports, at least 55 people died during the thanksgiving festival of Oromo Ireecha in the town of Bishoftu, which is in the volatile Oromia region.

There have been protests and clashes in the east African country involving the Oromo, Ethiopia's largest ethnic group, since the end of last year.

Reports also say that the internet was shut down on Wednesday, amid anti-government protests.

Here's UN Deputy Spokesperson, Farhan Haq.

"The Secretary-General calls for calm and restraint in the aftermath of this sad event. He also calls for a dialogue to address any grievances. He urges the Ethiopian authorities to conduct a credible investigation into the incident and to ensure full accountability in case of any violations."

New partnership to boost bird population in Sahel wetlands

A new partnership was announced on Thursday to help boost the dwindling numbers of migratory water birds in Africa's Sahel region.

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) will work together with the French Facility for Global Environment, to build up natural resources and better manage the bird population, which FAO describes as "crucial for food security.”

The project will focus on wetlands in the Senegal River Valley, Inner Niger Delta, Lake Chad and southerly regions of the Nile.

Many bird species winter in the region, before returning to breed in Europe.

Since 1960, the number of water birds in the Sahel has gone down by 40 per cent, due to shrinking flood plains, climate change, unsustainable hunting, and the introduction of invasive species.

Matthew Wells, United Nations.

Duration: 2'11"

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