News in Brief 19 October 2016 (PM)

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Iraqi women and children displaced from the Mosul corridor line up to recieve food in Debaga Displacement Camp in Erbil Governorate. Photo: UNICEF/Anmar

Rations available to feed 1m people fleeing Mosul

Food rations have been prepositioned outside the Iraqi city of Mosul for one million people, who may flee as a result of a government offensive to retake the city.

Mosul has been held by terrorists of the ISIL group for the last two years.

Thousands of people are reported to be fleeing the fighting.

The World Food Programme has said it is ready to help.

Amir Abdulla is the Deputy Executive Director of WFP.

"We have food stocks that would feed one million people for a month, but for us to be able to do that, people need to be able to reach an area of safety. We are well prepared with trucks. Wherever they set up centres that are safe we will go to them, the idea being that we would provide rations for people who are on the move. All of this is going to rely on there being enough security, peace and safety for people to move. And that has to be one of the main concerns at the moment."

Human rights violations remain "huge challenge", says Deputy UN chief

Serious human rights violations remain a "huge challenge" the Deputy Secretary-General said on Wednesday.

Jan Eliasson made the remarks during an event to mark the anniversary of two international treaties adopted by the UN General Assembly half a century ago.

The two human rights covenants together with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are known as the International Bill of Human Rights.

Stéphane Dujarric, the UN Spokesperson has more.

"Mr. Eliasson said this marked the beginning of a global constitution of human rights protection and galvanized the consensus view that the protection and realization of human rights is fundamental to building resilient, inclusive and peaceful societies. Regrettably, serious human rights violations remain a huge challenge. Mr. Eliasson stressed that in a world of widespread suffering, war, poverty and discrimination, this 50th anniversary is appropriate moment to rally around the Covenants' principles and vision."

Meanwhile, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said the covenants have been a lifeline for millions of people over the past 50 years and that they have helped shape constitutions of many countries.

Access to Myanmar's Rakhine state blocked because of fighting

Access to an area known as the "operation zone" in Myanmar's troubled northern Rakhine State continues to be blocked, the United Nations Spokesperson has confirmed.

Rakhine State, home to some one million people whose citizenship is unclear, is located on Myanmar’s west coast.

Most are members of the Rohingya, a Muslim minority living in the north.

Fighting in the area continues between the country's security forces and attackers belonging to an organization called the "Aqa mul moujahideen."

The local Muslim villagers also are also affected by the tight restrictions on movements.

Since 9 October, almost all humanitarian activities have been suspended and many international NGOs staff members are stuck in the affected areas.

Priyanka Shankar, United Nations.

Duration: 3’13″

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