News in Brief 17 February 2016 (AM)

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Children collect garbage in Lahore, State of Punjab, Pakistan. Photo: UNICEF/Marta Ramoneda

UN underlines support for Pakistan after series of deadly terrorist attacks

The UN has underlined its support for Pakistan in the wake of a week of bloody terrorist attacks across the country.

The latest incident occurred on Thursday when a suicide bomber killed scores of worshippers at a Sufi shrine in Sindh province, located in the southeast.

The terrorist group ISIL, also known as Daesh, has claimed responsibility.

The Spokesman for the UN Secretary-General has issued a statement condemning the attack and extending condolences to the families of the victims, as well as to the government and people of Pakistan.

The statement said the UN supports the government in its fight against terrorism "in full respect of international and human rights norms."

Thursday's bombing followed three separate attacks in Pakistan this week.

Two of the incidents occurred on Wednesday in the country's northwest, killing seven people.

And on Monday, at least 13 people died in a suicide bombing at a rally in Lahore.

UN chief welcomes Gambia's decision to stick with ICC

Gambia's decision to remain with the International Criminal Court (ICC) has been welcomed by the UN Secretary-General.

The West African nation was among a handful of countries on the continent that have threatened to leave the court, which tries those charged with genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Gambia had previously notified the UN chief of its plan to withdraw from the Rome Statute, the 2002 treaty that established the court.

However, the country's mission to the UN recently informed the Secretary-General that it was reversing the decision.

UN rights chief: Defend international law, the "sum of human experience"

The UN Human Rights High Commissioner has called for people everywhere to defend international law and the institutions that uphold it.

Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein's appeal came in a lecture to the U.S. Institute of Peace in the country's capital, Washington DC, on Thursday evening.

International law covers a wide range of issues of global concern including human rights, refugees, international crime, the use of force and the treatment of prisoners.

Zeid said these laws "were woven together from the screams of millions who died violently or suffered horribly over many centuries," adding that "we know very well what will happen, should they be dissolved."

He described international law as "the very distillation and sum of human experience."

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 2'27"

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