News in Brief 01 September 2017 (PM)

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Aerial view of roads and agricultural land inundated by floods in Banke district, south-western Nepal. Photo: UNICEF Nepal/2017/SJThapa

UN chief "saddened by loss of life" in Bangladesh, India, Nepal

UN chief António Guterres said on Friday he was "saddened by the loss of life" and the devastation caused by torrential monsoon rains across much of Bangladesh, India and Nepal.

News reports indicate that more than 1200 people have died across the three Member States, because of flooding, with around 40 million affected by the devastation.

Thousands of schools have been destroyed or damaged, meaning that nearly two million children will be unable to attend class, according to reports.

Mr Guterres extended his condolences to the governments and people of all three countries, and said the UN remained ready at all times, to support the relief efforts.

He saluted the governments' collective response so far on behalf of their citizens.

US$21 million allocated to provide life-saving support in Sudan

The UN has allocated an extra US$21 million to provide life-saving support for thousands of Sudanese, in newly-accessible areas in Darfur's Jebel Marra, area as well as South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

The money has been freed up from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) and the Sudan Humanitarian Fund, which is comprised of donor funds overseen by the UN Humanitarian Affairs office (OCHA).

Food, nutrition support, water, sanitation and health supplies will be key provisions of the aid package.

Marta Ruedas, UN Resident Coordinator in Sudan, said that alongside immediate needs, communities will be strengthened to improve resilience in the long-term.

Venezuela effort to strip National Assembly of power, condemned by IPU

The latest attempt by Venezuela's so-called Constituent Assembly to strip the internationally-recognized National Assembly of its authority, has been condemned by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU)

The IPU said that it had received reports that the controversial Constituent Assembly – which has no constitutional standing – has called for the prosecution of some MPs on charges of treason.

The IPU urged the Venezuelan authorities to fully respect the integrity of the freely-elected Parliament – the National Assembly – in accordance with Venezuela's existing constitution.

IPU's Committee on the Human Rights of Parliamentarians has received numerous new complaints from Venezuelan MPs of threats of violence and unlawful exclusion.

"Recent events only add further fuel to the fire" said IPU Secretary General Martin Chungong.

"In order to secure a peaceful future for Venezuela, the constitutional order and the rule of law must be allowed to prevail", he added.

Matt Wells, United Nations.

Duration: 2'05"

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