News in Brief 14 December 2017 (PM)

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Joint Press Announcement with Secretary-General António Guterres and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
in Tokyo, Japan. UN Photo/Curtis Christophersen

Security Council unity on DPRK crucial: UN Secretary-General

The UN Secretary-General has underscored the importance of international unity in addressing the nuclear threat posed by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

António Guterres was speaking to reporters in Tokyo on Thursday following a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, where North Korea was on the agenda.

He stressed that UN Security Council resolutions must be fully implemented to ensure that sanctions achieve the overall goal of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

"The unity of the Security Council is crucial on this. It is crucial to achieve this objective, but also crucial to allow for the possibility of diplomatic engagement that allows for that denuclearization to take place in a peaceful way. The worst possible thing that could happen would be for us all to sleepwalk into a war that might have very dramatic circumstances."

The UN chief was in Japan for a summit on universal health care access.

While there, he also met with representatives from civil society groups in the country.

Mexico: UN rights experts call for rejection of internal security law

Lawmakers in Mexico are being urged to reject a bill on internal security which could weaken the protection of human rights.

UN human rights experts issued the appeal on Thursday, when the country's Senate was due to vote on the draft law.

They feared it will give the armed forces "a leadership and coordination role in certain circumstances," instead of limiting their role to aiding and assisting civilian authorities.

They said the draft law does not provide adequate oversight of surveillance and categorizes all information resulting from it as a matter of national security.

It is also "ambiguous" on certain points and contains a "lax definition" of the situations where force could be used, they added.

Thai resort hotels back UN #CleanSeas campaign

More than 65 hotels in one of Thailand's most popular beach destinations have signed on to a UN campaign aimed at turning the tide on ocean plastic.

The members of the Phuket Hotels Association, which include boutique properties and large luxury international chains like JW Marriott and Hilton—have joined the #CleanSeas initiative.

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) launched the campaign earlier this year in an effort to reduce plastic waste flowing into the oceans.

The hotels have committed to minimizing and eventually eliminating disposable plastic water bottles and other forms of plastic.

UNEP said humans have already dumped billions of tonnes of plastic, and are adding it to the ocean at a rate of eight million tonnes a year.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 2’40″

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