News in Brief 9 March 2017 (AM)

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Photo: UNAMA/Fardin Waezi

Security Council condemns terrorist attack on Afghan military hospital

A terrorist attack on a military hospital in Afghanistan on Wednesday has been condemned in the strongest terms by the UN Security Council.

Affiliates of the extremist group ISIL claimed responsibility for the attack in which more than 120 people were killed or injured.

The Security Council issued a statement reaffirming that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation.

Council members said perpetrators and those who organize, finance or sponsor terrorism must be brought to justice.

The 15 ambassadors expressed their deep sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims, and wished a speedy recovery to the injured.

Stronger protection of Mali civilians needed: UN expert

Serious security threats in north and central Mali have put civilians and humanitarian aid workers at risk, a UN human rights expert has said.

Independent Expert Suliman Baldo, who was appointed by the UN Human Rights Council, completed an eight-day mission to the West African country on Thursday.

Mr Baldo said he deplored the rise in checkpoints monitored by dissidents and armed groups, as well as increased attacks targeting travellers.

He also expressed shock at the number of attacks on humanitarian workers which have made the UN peacekeeping operation in Mali, MINUSMA, one of the deadliest in the world today.

UNODC launches youth sports initiative in Brazil

An initiative that uses the power of sports to empower young people was launched this week in Brazil by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

The project, known as 'Line Up, Live Up,' aims to enhance life skills while increasing knowledge about the consequences of crime and drug use.

UNODC has designed a manual to assist coaches, trainers, and others who work with young people to deliver sports-based training exercises to boys and girls between the ages of 13 and17.

The agency explains that sports can improve people's lives, not only through physical activity but by promoting a sense of belonging, loyalty and support.

The programme was piloted in the Brazilian cities of Brasília and Rio de Janeiro and will be rolled out in other regions of South America, as well as in Southern Africa and Central Asia.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 2’25″

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