News in Brief 01 August 2017 (PM)

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Protesters in La Castellana, a neighborhood in eastern Caracas. Photo: Helena Carplo/IRIN News

UN rights chief concerned over arrest of Venezuela opposition figures

Authorities in Venezuela are being urged by the UN Human Rights High Commissioner to release all those who are being held in custody for exercising their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly, association and expression.

Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein made the appeal on Tuesday in a statement expressing his deep concern over the arrest of two key opposition leaders.

Leopoldo Lopez and António Ledezma, who were on house arrest, were taken into custody overnight on Monday.

The UN human rights chief also expressed regret over the deaths of at least 10 people during demonstrations held amid the Constituent Assembly elections this past weekend.

He called for their deaths to be investigated "in a prompt, effective and independent manner, with the full cooperation of the Government."

Humanitarians reports "alarming" increase in measles in Somalia

There has been an "alarming" rise in the number of suspected cases of measles in Somalia, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said on Tuesday.

OCHA said13,428 cases have been reported so far this year, compared to the  5,000 to 10,000 total cases per year since 2014.

UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric has more details:

"OCHA says the displacement caused by the ongoing drought is worsening the situation and exacerbating the spread of the disease. The agency is planning a nationwide emergency mass-vaccination measles campaign targeting children under 10 years of age, and said that some US$14 million dollars will be required to support the campaign."

Palestine refugees in Lebanon benefit from EU support

A European Union-supported project to improve living and health conditions for Palestine refugees in Lebanon has rehabilitated more than 440 shelters and three health centres at UN-run camps in the country.

That information comes from the UN agency which works with Palestine refugees, UNRWA, which held a ceremony earlier this week to celebrate three years of  this collaboration.

UNRWA said the EU support also allowed the health centres to adopt what it called "a more person-centred approach" to health care focusing on the comprehensive history of a patient, rather than treating a specific ailment.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 2’23″

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