World News in Brief: Ukraine attacks in Donetsk, ‘forever chemicals’ dumped in US, benefits of multilingual education

Briefing journalists in New York, Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric cited the UN humanitarian affairs office, OCHA, which said the damage had occurred after a water filtering station was hit. The city had a pre-war population of 220,000 people, now reduced to 90,000.  The attacks also caused civilian casualties and damage to civilian infrastructure on both sides… Continue reading World News in Brief: Ukraine attacks in Donetsk, ‘forever chemicals’ dumped in US, benefits of multilingual education

Gaza has become a ‘death zone’, warns UN health chief

21 February 2024Peace and Security An “inhumane” health and humanitarian situation now prevails across Gaza with conditions continuing to deteriorate, the head of the UN World Health Organization warned on Wednesday. “Gaza has become a death zone,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General told correspondents at a press briefing in Geneva. “Much of the territory has… Continue reading Gaza has become a ‘death zone’, warns UN health chief

DR Congo: Fighting threatens stability of entire region, envoy warns

Briefing the Security Council in New York, UN Special Representative Bintou Keita urged ambassadors to do all they can to prevent the fighting in North Kivu province from spreading beyond the border.  “It is crucial to underscore the risk of an expansion of the conflict on a regional scale if the diplomatic efforts that are… Continue reading DR Congo: Fighting threatens stability of entire region, envoy warns

World News in Brief: Papua New Guinea violence, Ukraine’s displaced, $2.6 billion DR Congo appeal

Authorities are urged to engage with provincial and local leaders in a dialogue to achieve durable peace and respect for human rights in the remote Highlands region. The appeal follows the latest outbreak of violence between warring tribes in the Pacific Island nation, which occurred on Sunday in Enga province. At least 26 people were… Continue reading World News in Brief: Papua New Guinea violence, Ukraine’s displaced, $2.6 billion DR Congo appeal

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to vote on ceasefire in Gaza

20 February 2024Peace and Security The Security Council is due to meet at 10:00 AM in New York to vote on a resolution on Gaza calling for “an immediate humanitarian ceasefire that must be respected by all parties”. Following all our live coverage here of another day of high stakes diplomacy. 09:30 AM: Tabled by… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to vote on ceasefire in Gaza

UN agencies sound alarm over renewed clashes in eastern DR Congo

The UN Mission, MONUSCO, also called on the group to respect the Luanda roadmap, an agreement signed in 2022 by Angola, DRC and Rwanda that strives for peace in the conflict-affected eastern part of the country. MONUSCO is carrying out a three-phase process of withdrawal from the country following a UN Security Council resolution adopted in December… Continue reading UN agencies sound alarm over renewed clashes in eastern DR Congo

World News in Brief: Millions battle hunger due to Sudan war, human rights essential to peace, surge in fighting along Ukraine frontline

Thousands of families continue to be displaced and forced across borders into Chad and South Sudan each week while fighting between Government forces and the powerful RSF militia, which erupted last April, continues. WFP Regional Director Michael Dunford said the crisis impacting Sudan, South Sudan and Chad has created “the world’s largest displacement crisis”. Acute… Continue reading World News in Brief: Millions battle hunger due to Sudan war, human rights essential to peace, surge in fighting along Ukraine frontline

UN committed to help Somalia deliver ‘for its people’

Catriona Laing, who also heads the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), briefed ambassadors on developments across eight areas, including politics, security, women’s political participation, and humanitarian affairs. She expressed the UN’s “unwavering support towards the state-building agenda” in Somalia, underscoring that the Council’s support is central to the country’s success. “Through our collective support,… Continue reading UN committed to help Somalia deliver ‘for its people’

Gaza: Israeli advance on Rafah would have ‘dire humanitarian consequences’

Sigrid Kaag reiterated Secretary-General António Guterres’s concern that such an operation at present time would be potentially disastrous for innocent civilians. “There are more than a million people crammed in Rafah. It’s not intended for a million people in shelters, in random sort of plastic sheeted constructions. Health conditions are very worrisome,” she told correspondents… Continue reading Gaza: Israeli advance on Rafah would have ‘dire humanitarian consequences’

We all want an Afghanistan at peace, UN chief says in Doha

Speaking to journalists during a two-day meeting with regional and national special envoys for Afghanistan, António Guterres said that there was consensus among delegates over what needs to happen, although the Taliban are not taking part. “We want an Afghanistan in peace, peace with itself and peace with its neighbours and able to assume the… Continue reading We all want an Afghanistan at peace, UN chief says in Doha

Lifesaving medical care collapsing under assault in Gaza: WHO

16 February 2024Peace and Security The largest remaining hospital in southern Gaza is “barely functional”, the UN World Health Organization (WHO) warned on Friday, amid reports of intense attacks by Israeli forces. There have been reports of damage to Nasser Hospital’s orthopedic unit, reducing its ability to provide urgent medical care, WHO spokesperson Tarik Jašarević,… Continue reading Lifesaving medical care collapsing under assault in Gaza: WHO

In Munich, Guterres calls for new global order that works for all

“Our world is facing existential challenges, but the global community is more fragmented and divided than at any time during the past 75 years,” he said, highlighting the need for “a global order that works for everyone”. Mr. Guterres said if countries fulfilled their obligations under the UN Charter, every person on earth would live… Continue reading In Munich, Guterres calls for new global order that works for all

World News in Brief: World News in Brief: Warmest January on record, Sudan diplomacy push, catching childhood cancer early

Global precipitation reached a near record-high in January on the heels of a record wet December. Large portions of North America, Asia and Australia were wetter than average while much of southern Africa and South America were drier than normal. The record-breaking trend seen for much of 2023 has rolled into 2024. For the eighth… Continue reading World News in Brief: World News in Brief: Warmest January on record, Sudan diplomacy push, catching childhood cancer early

‘Force alone is not the answer’ says UN counter-terrorism chief

15 February 2024Peace and Security International cooperation is vital to confront the multi-faceted challenges resulting from terrorism, the head of the UN Office dedicated to confronting the scourge worldwide said on Thursday, calling for decisive multilateral action. “Force alone is not the answer,” Vladimir Voronkov, Under-Secretary-General for the Office of Counter-Terrorism, told ambassadors in the… Continue reading ‘Force alone is not the answer’ says UN counter-terrorism chief

Security Council: Continued Libya impasse threatens country’s future

They must put aside self-interest, negotiate in good faith and reach an agreement on a unified government, while also ensuring national polls go ahead to avoid it from “sliding into disintegration”, Abdoulaye Bathily told ambassadors on the Security Council. “I call on their sense of moral duty to negotiate and reach a compromise to restore… Continue reading Security Council: Continued Libya impasse threatens country’s future

Gaza: Israel’s censure of rights expert should not distract from possible war crimes

As Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Francesca Albanese has a mandate from the Council which includes investigating violations, undertaking regular visits or missions, and reporting on findings. Israel’s Foreign Minister and Interior Minister announced this week that she was prohibited from entering the country following recent comments… Continue reading Gaza: Israel’s censure of rights expert should not distract from possible war crimes

Ukraine recovery and reconstruction: $486 billion over the next decade

The updated Rapid Damage and Needs Assessment (RDNA3) – issued by the Government, alongside the World Bank Group, the European Commission and the UN – covers damage incurred since the start of the full-scale Russian invasion on 24 February 2022 to the end of last December.  The highest needs are in housing, or 17 per… Continue reading Ukraine recovery and reconstruction: $486 billion over the next decade

Gaza: Threat of ground invasion looms over Rafah

15 February 2024Peace and Security Amid ongoing airstrikes targeting Gaza’s southernmost city of Rafah and reports that Israeli forces have conducted a military operation inside the Nasser hospital complex, concerns over a potential ground invasion of the densely populated border city are escalating.  The Israeli military confirmed on Thursday in a tweet that its special… Continue reading Gaza: Threat of ground invasion looms over Rafah

Massive displacement as fighting surges in eastern DR Congo

14 February 2024Peace and Security Civilians in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) are once again bearing the brunt of localized violence, amid a sharp uptick in fighting between Government forces and the M23 armed group, the UN refugee agency reported on Wednesday. Fresh fighting since last week in the region has displaced… Continue reading Massive displacement as fighting surges in eastern DR Congo

World News in Brief: DR Congo clashes, invest in ending polio, say #IDONT to child marriage

Violence last week forced thousands to flee, and fighting occurred on Tuesday in the outskirts of Sake, which is located some 20 kilometres northwest of the provincial capital, Goma. “Our peacekeeping mission is continuing to support the Congolese armed forces and is doing its utmost to protect civilians, including by maintaining a presence along the Goma-Sake axis,” said… Continue reading World News in Brief: DR Congo clashes, invest in ending polio, say #IDONT to child marriage

Yemen: Recent progress marred by Gaza war fallout, UN envoy reports

Briefing the Security Council, Hans Grundberg recalled “steady progress” in UN efforts to mediate the the complex decade-long crisis, set off by the overthrow of the Government by Houthi rebels in 2014. However, the locus of attention has shifted dramatically since December 2023 due to the Israel-Gaza war and the military escalation in the Red… Continue reading Yemen: Recent progress marred by Gaza war fallout, UN envoy reports

Faster and safe aid access critical to keep famine and disease at bay in Gaza

Getting enough supplies into and across Gaza now depends on the opening of new entry routes, more trucks being allowed through border checks each day, fewer restrictions on the movement of humanitarian workers, and safety guarantees for people accessing and distributing aid, they said. They warned that humanitarian action is seriously limited by the closure… Continue reading Faster and safe aid access critical to keep famine and disease at bay in Gaza

World News in Brief: Rafah ‘slaughter’ fears, Ukraine energy system attacks, rights abuses against Syrian returnees

“Today, I’m sounding the alarm once again: Military operations in Rafah could lead to a slaughter in Gaza. They could also leave an already fragile humanitarian operation at death’s door,” he said in a statement on Tuesday. “The scenario we have long dreaded is unraveling at alarming speed,” he said, as well over a million… Continue reading World News in Brief: Rafah ‘slaughter’ fears, Ukraine energy system attacks, rights abuses against Syrian returnees

Rising hunger: UN chief identifies wars, climate chaos as aggravating factors

“Climate chaos and food crises are serious and mounting threats to global peace and security. It is only right that they are addressed by this Council,” he said. Representatives from nearly 90 countries are participating in the debate, convened by Guyana, which holds the rotating Council presidency this month.   Hunger in Gaza  Climate disasters and… Continue reading Rising hunger: UN chief identifies wars, climate chaos as aggravating factors

INTERVIEW: Unpacking Egypt’s vital aid role in Gaza and Sudan

UN News spoke with Elena Panova, UN Resident Coordinator in Egypt, and Neveen Alqabbaj, Vice-President of the Egyptian Red Crescent Society and Egypt’s Minister of Social Solidarity, about how thousands of tonnes of aid and lifesaving services get delivered in times of crisis. Neveen Alqabbaj: The Egyptian Red Crescent Society was on top of the… Continue reading INTERVIEW: Unpacking Egypt’s vital aid role in Gaza and Sudan

Gazans ‘anxious and living in fear’ of Israeli assault on Rafah, warns top UN aid official

13 February 2024Peace and Security As international efforts continue to secure a ceasefire in Gaza, the head of UNRWA, the UN aid agency for Palestinians, warned on Tuesday that those in the enclave remain deeply traumatised by the war with Israel and afraid of a full-scale assault on Rafah in the south. “People are anxious… Continue reading Gazans ‘anxious and living in fear’ of Israeli assault on Rafah, warns top UN aid official

World News in Brief: Syria aid lifelines, Sudan telecoms blackout, increased patrols in Abyei, preventing terrorism

The Syrian Government informed the UN on Saturday of its consent to allow humanitarian assistance to be delivered into the region through two border crossings with Türkiye – Bab al-Salam and Al-Ra’i – until 13 May.  This follows Syria’s decision in January to renew consent for the UN and partners to use the Bab al-Hawa… Continue reading World News in Brief: Syria aid lifelines, Sudan telecoms blackout, increased patrols in Abyei, preventing terrorism

Address root causes of Ukraine war, UN official urges, as anniversary of Russian invasion approaches

12 February 2024Peace and Security As the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine approaches, a senior UN official on Monday voiced deep concern over the escalatory trajectory of the war with intensifying attacks on civilians. Miroslav Jenča, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Europe at the Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (DPPA), warned that… Continue reading Address root causes of Ukraine war, UN official urges, as anniversary of Russian invasion approaches

First-ever UN report reveals complex threats to migratory species

Of most concern is the threat to migratory fishes, with 97 per cent of the species on the brink of extinction.   The two greatest threats to all migratory species are overexploitation and habitat loss due to human activity, according to the first-ever State of the World’s Migratory Species report, released on Monday. Amy Fraenkel,… Continue reading First-ever UN report reveals complex threats to migratory species

Gaza: UN rights chief warns against potential ‘carnage’ in Rafah

12 February 2024Human Rights UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk on Monday appealed for restraint in the face of an Israeli military incursion in Rafah, warning of the risk of further atrocity crimes in the Gaza war.  Nearly 1.5 million people are now crammed into the southern city on the border with Egypt,… Continue reading Gaza: UN rights chief warns against potential ‘carnage’ in Rafah

Gaza: Relief over rescued hostages as Tedros warns of ‘ocean of need’

12 February 2024Peace and Security Amid reports on Monday that two hostages have been rescued during a raid by Israeli special forces in Rafah city, the head of the UN World Health Organization (WHO) said that the spiralling humanitarian crisis in Gaza is still not being met with anywhere near sufficient aid relief.  “So far,… Continue reading Gaza: Relief over rescued hostages as Tedros warns of ‘ocean of need’

A lullaby for children sleeping under bombs in Gaza

“I endured the artillery’s roar, the fire in the nursery, yet I stand tall,” read the lyrics. “I weathered the paralyzing fear under the covers, felt everyone turn their backs, yet I stand tall.”When he wrote the song in October, shortly after the war began, Marwán, whose father grew up in UNRWA tents in the… Continue reading A lullaby for children sleeping under bombs in Gaza

Mongolian dzud: Extreme weather puts 90% of country at ‘high risk’

9 February 2024Climate and Environment The ongoing “white and iron” dzud in Mongolia has reached a “critical” level, with over 90 per cent of the country facing high levels of risk from the unique weather phenomenon, UN agencies have reported. About 190,000 herder households are struggling with inadequate feed, skyrocketing prices and heightened vulnerabilities, according… Continue reading Mongolian dzud: Extreme weather puts 90% of country at ‘high risk’

World News in Brief: Rafah escalation fears, Gaza war’s unprecedented death rate, Pakistan terrorist attacks condemned

More than half of Gaza’s population of over two million is now crammed into the city, which is located on the border with Egypt and originally home to some 250,000 people. Congestion has reached a point where normal routes are blocked by tents set up by families seeking any flat, clean space available, OCHA said.  Garbage… Continue reading World News in Brief: Rafah escalation fears, Gaza war’s unprecedented death rate, Pakistan terrorist attacks condemned

Haiti: Human rights deteriorating as gang violence spreads

At least 806 people not involved in violent gang wars were killed, injured, or kidnapped in January – the bloodiest month in more than two years. Additionally, some 300 gang members were killed or injured, bringing the overall total of people affected to 1,108 – more than three times the number recorded in January 2023… Continue reading Haiti: Human rights deteriorating as gang violence spreads

UN Special Adviser ‘horrified’ at suffering of civilians in the Middle East

Alice Wairimu Nderitu also underscored the need to intensify diplomatic efforts to bring the crisis to an end. “Civilians should never pay the price of a conflict for which they bear no responsibility,” she said in a statement. “Their most basic rights must be protected and preserved, and their humanitarian needs must be met,” she… Continue reading UN Special Adviser ‘horrified’ at suffering of civilians in the Middle East

World News in Brief: Ukraine nuclear power plant update, DR Congo flood response, impact of US terrorism designations

8 February 2024Peace and Security The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) this week undertook his fourth visit to the beleaguered Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) in southern Ukraine, his office said on Thursday.  IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi took stock of the safety and security situation at the plant as part… Continue reading World News in Brief: Ukraine nuclear power plant update, DR Congo flood response, impact of US terrorism designations

Security Council debates Kosovo’s new rules on Serbian currency

8 February 2024Peace and Security Trust building, not unilateral actions, are the linchpin in forging a peaceful path forward for Belgrade and Pristina, the UN’s top official in Kosovo told the Security Council on Thursday, as the body called an urgent meeting at Serbia’s request to debate new banking regulations that have triggered fresh tensions.… Continue reading Security Council debates Kosovo’s new rules on Serbian currency

Gazans ‘have no homes – and they have no hope’: UN chief

Speaking at a press conference at UN Headquarters in New York, the UN chief underscored the need for “real, visible, concrete steps” towards a two-State solution – based on UN resolutions, international law and previous agreements. “Repeated bloody hostilities, and decades of tensions and occupation, have failed to provide a State for the Palestinians, or… Continue reading Gazans ‘have no homes – and they have no hope’: UN chief

Gazans ‘stalked by hunger, disease and death’ warns UN’s top aid official

8 February 2024Peace and Security Amid further fighting across Gaza on Thursday including reports of deadly airstrikes in Rafah governorate, the UN’s top aid official Martin Griffiths echoed widespread international fears about a further escalation of the conflict. “As the war in Gaza encroaches further into Rafah, I am extremely concerned about the safety and… Continue reading Gazans ‘stalked by hunger, disease and death’ warns UN’s top aid official

Stories from the UN Archive: Were WMDs ever at UN Headquarters?

This #ThrowbackThursday, we looked at his claim and what was in the vial. On 5 February 2003, Mr. Powell addressed the Council, laying out the case for the US invasion of Iraq the following month. “Every statement I make today is backed up by solid sources,” he said. “What we’re giving you are facts and conclusions.… Continue reading Stories from the UN Archive: Were WMDs ever at UN Headquarters?

World News in Brief: UN official condemns attacks in Ukraine, DR Congo faces fresh fighting and devastating floods

The morning assault reportedly involved Russian-fired missiles and drones which hit six Ukrainian regions leaving at least five dead.  The attacks also disrupted essential services, including electricity, water and gas supplies, especially in Mykolaiv city and Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv, when they are much needed this cold winter. “Millions of people rely on these services for… Continue reading World News in Brief: UN official condemns attacks in Ukraine, DR Congo faces fresh fighting and devastating floods

UNICEF condemns air strike on schools in Myanmar

7 February 2024Peace and Security The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has strongly condemned Monday’s deadly airstrike on two schools in eastern Myanmar resulting in the deaths of at least four children and two teachers, with many more left injured. The children killed were boys between 12 and 14 years of age. “UNICEF strongly condemns any… Continue reading UNICEF condemns air strike on schools in Myanmar

Gaza war enters fifth month amid reports of potential ceasefire deal

7 February 2024Peace and Security As the devastating Gaza-Israel war entered its fifth month on Wednesday leaving a reported 27,585 Palestinians dead and nearly 70,000 injured, the UN’s top humanitarian official welcomed early indications of a “potential breakthrough” in negotiations for a ceasefire and the release of all remaining hostages. Commenting on the “potentially positive… Continue reading Gaza war enters fifth month amid reports of potential ceasefire deal

UN’s political chief warns of escalating toll as third year of war in Ukraine looms

Briefing the Security Council, Political and Peacebuilding Affairs chief Rosemary DiCarlo told ambassadors: “We are no closer to the end of this illegal and unjustified war”. “With each passing day, the damage the conflict has done – and is doing – to Ukraine but also to global peace and security and international law, becomes increasingly… Continue reading UN’s political chief warns of escalating toll as third year of war in Ukraine looms

With Middle East at a ‘critical juncture’, UN Iraq envoy appeals for restraint

“With the conflict raging in Gaza, as well as armed action elsewhere, the Middle East is at a critical juncture, and the same is true for Iraq,” said UN Special Representative Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, calling for restraint. “With Iraq cloaked in an already complex tapestry of challenges; it is of greatest importance that all attacks cease.”… Continue reading With Middle East at a ‘critical juncture’, UN Iraq envoy appeals for restraint

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to meet on Middle East crisis over US strikes

5 February 2024Peace and Security The UN Security Council is set to convene for an urgent meeting Monday afternoon at the request of Russia, as the war in Gaza continues to fan tensions across the Middle East, with potentially dramatic consequences for regional peace and security. Follow developments live here. Video of the Security Council… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to meet on Middle East crisis over US strikes

Guterres appoints independent UNRWA review panel

5 February 2024UN Affairs UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Monday appointed an independent panel to conduct an assessment of the UN agency that assists Palestine refugees, UNRWA, following accusations that several staff were involved in the 7 October attacks against Israel.   The independent Review Group – appointed in consultation with UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini – will examine whether the… Continue reading Guterres appoints independent UNRWA review panel

UN force steps up patrols after weekend of bloodshed in Abyei

5 February 2024Peace and Security The UN Interim Security Force in Abyei (UNISFA) has heightened ground and aerial patrols to deter further violence, after brutal fighting in the oil-rich region claimed dozens of lives over the weekend. Heavily armed assailants attacked civilians in the villages of Malual Aleu, Banton, Awolnhom, Abathok, Majbong, Awal, and east… Continue reading UN force steps up patrols after weekend of bloodshed in Abyei

Gaza: Northern aid push frustrated as regional tensions rise

“This morning a food convoy waiting to move into northern Gaza was hit by Israeli naval gunfire; thankfully no-one was injured,” said Tom White, Director of Affairs for the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, UNWRA. Accompanying the post on X, formerly Twitter, two photographs showed a stationary flat-bed lorry parked in front of a UN… Continue reading Gaza: Northern aid push frustrated as regional tensions rise

World News in Brief: Drought in Ethiopia, peacekeepers wounded in DR Congo, deadly strike on Ukraine aid workers

Drought is ravaging communities in Afar, Amhara, Tigray and Oromia, as well as the Southern and South West Ethiopia Peoples’ Region. Severe water shortages, dried pastures and reduced harvests are impacting millions of people and livestock, with reports of food insecurity and rising malnutrition.  Among those who are particularly vulnerable are people affected by the… Continue reading World News in Brief: Drought in Ethiopia, peacekeepers wounded in DR Congo, deadly strike on Ukraine aid workers

WFP pleads for aid access in Sudan, amid reports of starvation

WFP described the situation as dire, noting that almost 18 million people across the country are currently facing acute hunger.  An estimated five million are experiencing emergency levels of hunger due to conflict in areas such as Khartoum, Darfur, and Kordofan. Obstacles to aid delivery  “The situation in Sudan today is nothing short of catastrophic,”… Continue reading WFP pleads for aid access in Sudan, amid reports of starvation

Gaza: Rafah now a ‘pressure cooker of despair’ as exodus south continues

The warning from the UN aid coordination office, OCHA, comes nearly four months since Israel commenced a devastating bombing campaign in response to Hamas-led terror attacks on 7 October that left some 1,200 people butchered in southern Israeli communities and more than 250 taken hostage. “In recent days, thousands of Palestinians have been fleeing to… Continue reading Gaza: Rafah now a ‘pressure cooker of despair’ as exodus south continues

World News in Brief: Dozens killed in Mali ‘summary executions’, Ukraine update, civilian protection in DR Congo

The alleged massacre happened in Welingara village in the Nara region of central Mali on 26 January. Some 30 civilians were also reportedly killed by unidentified gunmen in the Bandiagara region at the weekend. In his call for impartial investigations into the allegations, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights emphasized the need for justice… Continue reading World News in Brief: Dozens killed in Mali ‘summary executions’, Ukraine update, civilian protection in DR Congo

Gaza: Aid operations in peril amid funding crisis

1 February 2024Humanitarian Aid Lifesaving aid operations in Gaza are “in peril” amid ongoing Israeli bombardment because of the funding crisis impacting the UN agency for Palestine refugees, UNRWA, top UN officials reiterated on Thursday. “It’s difficult to imagine that Gazans will survive this crisis without UNRWA…(we) have received reports that people in the area are… Continue reading Gaza: Aid operations in peril amid funding crisis

Myanmar: Military’s ‘campaign of violence’ must end, UN chief says on anniversary of coup

31 January 2024Peace and Security On the third anniversary of the military coup in Myanmar, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres voiced grave concern over the deteriorating situation in the country. In a statement issued by his Spokesman on Wednesday, the UN chief underscored the urgency of a transition to democratic governance and reinstating civilian rule. “The… Continue reading Myanmar: Military’s ‘campaign of violence’ must end, UN chief says on anniversary of coup

Gaza: A struggle to keep young hopes alive, amid shattered dreams

31 January 2024Human Rights Children in Gaza will likely lose at least a year of education, with the school year suspended, and classrooms closed or turned into shelters. Ziad Taleb, a correspondent for UN News, has been talking to teachers and children at a school in the central Gaza city of Deir al-Balah, which is… Continue reading Gaza: A struggle to keep young hopes alive, amid shattered dreams

World News in Brief: Haiti child displacement, Hong Kong torture claims, support Sudan refugees

Escalating armed violence in Haiti has triggered a profound humanitarian crisis, the UN Children’s Fund, UNICEF, warned on Wednesday. At least 170,000 children are now displaced – double the number from last year – amid a surge in gang-led killings and kidnappings, sexual violence and a severe food crisis. “In Haiti, children and families are… Continue reading World News in Brief: Haiti child displacement, Hong Kong torture claims, support Sudan refugees

World court rejects bulk of Ukraine’s terrorism charges against Russia

31 January 2024Peace and Security The International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled on Wednesday that Russia had violated global anti-terrorism and anti-racial discrimination treaties, but dismissed most of the charges Kyiv brought against Moscow stemming from its 2014 invasion of Ukraine. The 117-page judgement contained rulings on seven matters in Ukraine’s case against Russia claiming that… Continue reading World court rejects bulk of Ukraine’s terrorism charges against Russia

Gaza economic recovery could take decades: UN report

The preliminary assessment of the social and economic impacts of the conflict examines Gross Domestic Product (GDP) loss, recovery timelines and the enduring effects on poverty and household expenditure. It is estimated the annual GDP of Gaza declined by $655 million last year, equivalent to 24 per cent. “The possibility and speed of recovery in… Continue reading Gaza economic recovery could take decades: UN report

‘We cannot abandon the people of Gaza’: chiefs of UN agencies and NGOs unite in appeal for UNRWA

31 January 2024Humanitarian Aid Deadly clashes and shelling continued in Khan Younis in southern Gaza overnight into Wednesday as top UN humanitarians and NGO chiefs warned of the “catastrophic consequences” of defunding UNRWA, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees facing allegations of collusion with Hamas. Despite the “horrifying” allegations that 12 UNWRA staff were involved in… Continue reading ‘We cannot abandon the people of Gaza’: chiefs of UN agencies and NGOs unite in appeal for UNRWA

World News in Brief: Response plan for Somalia launched, mass executions in Iraq, Ukraine update, new European heat record

Somalia was hit by multiple shocks last year, including devastating drought, unprecedented heavy rains and flooding, and further mass displacement. Millions of people also continue to suffer from hunger and malnutrition, the UN said. The plan, launched with federal and state Governments, was launched as four million people – nearly a quarter of the population –… Continue reading World News in Brief: Response plan for Somalia launched, mass executions in Iraq, Ukraine update, new European heat record

Gaza: Aid cuts to UN agency could be felt in weeks

“While we’re addressing these concerns very actively, the humanitarian work needs to go on,” UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric told reporters at the Noon Briefing at Headquarters in New York on Tuesday. “Civilians in Gaza who are suffering, need the continued support of everyone,” he said. “The critical humanitarian work the UN does not only in Gaza,… Continue reading Gaza: Aid cuts to UN agency could be felt in weeks

Myanmar demands greater focus urges UN rights chief, three years after coup

“Amid all of the crises around the world, it is important no one is forgotten. The people of Myanmar have been suffering for too long,” Volker Türk said ahead of the anniversary of the coup on 1 February. He explained that fighting between the military and armed opposition groups has resulted in mass displacement and… Continue reading Myanmar demands greater focus urges UN rights chief, three years after coup

Amid UNWRA funding crisis, desperate Gazans scour trucks for food

30 January 2024Humanitarian Aid As the UN chief prepares to meet representatives from countries who donate to the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) late on Tuesday following allegations of collusion with Hamas, the UN health agency, WHO, reiterated that now was not the time to abandon the people of Gaza. Despite ongoing Israeli bombardment… Continue reading Amid UNWRA funding crisis, desperate Gazans scour trucks for food

World News in Brief: Progress on transfats, Ukraine war update, General Assembly President in China

Denmark, Lithuania, Poland, Saudi Arabia, and Thailand have received the first-ever WHO certificates for demonstrating that they have a best practice policy for industrially produced trans-fatty acids (iTFA) elimination in effect, supported by adequate monitoring and enforcement systems. Trans fats are industrially produced or naturally occurring, and both are linked to an increased risk of… Continue reading World News in Brief: Progress on transfats, Ukraine war update, General Assembly President in China

World confronts an ‘ugly and inescapable truth’ in Darfur, says ICC Prosecutor

Prosecutor Karim Khan emphasized the “ugly and inescapable truth” that failure to act now is not only a damning verdict on the present but will subject future generations to a similar fate. “It cannot be a case of ‘play, rewind, and repeat’,” he warned. A clear assessment by his office indicated the presence of “grounds… Continue reading World confronts an ‘ugly and inescapable truth’ in Darfur, says ICC Prosecutor

Gaza: ‘Simply not enough food’ to go around, warn UN humanitarians

29 January 2024Peace and Security Ongoing hostilities across the Gaza Strip have been “particularly intense” in the southern city of Khan Younis, UN humanitarians warned on Monday, as the UN agency for Palestinians, UNWRA, reported that its shelters were now four times over-capacity. “There is simply not enough food,” UNRWA tweeted on social platform X,… Continue reading Gaza: ‘Simply not enough food’ to go around, warn UN humanitarians

From The Field: Story of an aid worker trying to survive in Gaza

28 January 2024Peace and Security A humanitarian worker in Gaza has been documenting her struggles after being displaced on numerous occasions as she and her family flee ongoing bombardments by Israeli forces. Tents for displaced people in southern Gaza When war began on 7 October, life changed dramatically overnight for mother-of-four Hala, as it did… Continue reading From The Field: Story of an aid worker trying to survive in Gaza

World News in Brief: UNHCR chief on frontlines in Ukraine, 10 million displaced in Sudan, instability grows in Lebanon

Wrapping up a week-long visit to the country, he made a strong appeal for greater international humanitarian support. “The fighting has escalated and the humanitarian situation in the country is dramatic and urgent. Millions have been forced to flee the war and Russian attacks, and they are in desperate need of humanitarian assistance,” he said.… Continue reading World News in Brief: UNHCR chief on frontlines in Ukraine, 10 million displaced in Sudan, instability grows in Lebanon

UNRWA to investigate allegations ‘several’ staffers played role in 7 October attacks

26 January 2024Peace and Security Secretary-General António Guterres has asked the head of the UN agency assisting Palestine refugees (UNRWA) to “swiftly” investigate “extremely serious allegations” that several agency staffers were involved in the 7 October terror attacks in southern Israel. Mr. Guterres has also asked UNRWA head, Philippe Lazzarini, to refer any employees found… Continue reading UNRWA to investigate allegations ‘several’ staffers played role in 7 October attacks

Gaza: UN rights office condemns ‘chaotic’ Israeli mass evacuation orders

The OHCHR warning came nearly four months into the war which has seen widespread Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip, in response to Hamas-led attacks on Israeli communities beginning 7 October in which some 1,200 people were massacred and more than 250 taken hostage. “Attacks on hospitals, schools, and other places of refuge have repeatedly… Continue reading Gaza: UN rights office condemns ‘chaotic’ Israeli mass evacuation orders

UN world court issues appeal calling for prevention of genocidal acts in Gaza

Reading out the order at the Peace Palace in The Hague – in response to allegations of genocide against Israel by South Africa, which Israel denies – ICJ President Joan Donoghue also called for the release of all remaining hostages taken from Israel during the Hamas-led attacks on Israeli communities in which some 1,200 people… Continue reading UN world court issues appeal calling for prevention of genocidal acts in Gaza

Ukraine war: Political Affairs chief warns against rhetoric fuelling ‘already dangerous conflict’

“We understand both Russia and Ukraine are conducting separate investigations into the incident, and Kyiv has called for an international probe,” Rosemary DiCarlo, Under-Secretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs, told ambassadors in the Security Council. Russia said that there were no survivors from Monday’s crash in the Belgorod region close to the Ukrainian border and… Continue reading Ukraine war: Political Affairs chief warns against rhetoric fuelling ‘already dangerous conflict’

UN representative on sexual violence in conflict to visit Israel and West Bank

25 January 2024Women The UN expert working to eliminate rape during wartime has been invited to Israel by the Government to gather information on sexual violence reportedly committed in the context of the 7 October Hamas attacks and their aftermath.  Pramila Patten, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict, will also… Continue reading UN representative on sexual violence in conflict to visit Israel and West Bank

Sudan war ‘a living nightmare for children’: UNICEF Representative

“Sudan is experiencing a humanitarian catastrophe of epic proportions. It’s a living nightmare for children,” Mandeep O’Brien said this week in an interview with UN News.  Nearly 10 months have passed since clashes erupted between the Sudanese Army and a rival group known as the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), leaving14 million children in desperate need of lifesaving assistance. Child displacement crisis  Ms. O’Brien said… Continue reading Sudan war ‘a living nightmare for children’: UNICEF Representative

Haiti crises have reached ‘a critical point’: UN envoy

“I cannot overstress the severity of the situation in Haiti, where multiple protracted crises have reached a critical point,” said Maria Isabel Salvador, presenting the latest report of the UN political office there, BINUH.  The Caribbean country remains plagued by mounting violence and insecurity at the hands of armed gangs, against a backdrop of political, humanitarian, and socioeconomic… Continue reading Haiti crises have reached ‘a critical point’: UN envoy

The Red Sea shipping crisis is having a ‘dramatic’ impact, warns logistics chief

25 January 2024Peace and Security Attacks against shipping in the Red Sea by Houthis are devastating for global trade and supply chains, already reeling under the impacts of the war in Ukraine and climate change-linked conditions in the Panama Canal, said UN trade and development body, UNCTAD, on Thursday. According to Jan Hoffmann, Chief of… Continue reading The Red Sea shipping crisis is having a ‘dramatic’ impact, warns logistics chief

Gaza: Top UN aid official calls for end to attacks on sites sheltering civilians

Global perspective Human stories Palestinian women mourn the loss of a family member at Al-Nasser Medical Hospital in Khan Younis, southern Gaza. (file) 25 January 2024Peace and Security Attacks on buildings in Gaza where terrified civilians are sheltering are “abhorrent and must stop immediately”, a top UN humanitarian official insisted on Thursday, after a direct… Continue reading Gaza: Top UN aid official calls for end to attacks on sites sheltering civilians

End the war and recognize Palestine, Security Council urged

More than 70 delegates voiced serious concerns about the ongoing humanitarian “catastrophe” as the conflict in Gaza approaches its fourth month. Council members alongside the wider UN membership on Tuesday established the major theme of the debate: urging Israel to accept a two-State solution or risk a perpetual war which is an increasing threat global stability.… Continue reading End the war and recognize Palestine, Security Council urged

Africa now ‘global epicentre’ of terrorism: UN chief

24 January 2024Peace and Security In just a matter of years, Africa has become the “global epicentre of terrorism”, with groups such as Da’esh, Al-Qaida and their affiliates exploiting local conflicts and fragilities to serve their own ends, the UN Secretary-General said on Wednesday, calling for violent extremism to be rooted out. Speaking at a… Continue reading Africa now ‘global epicentre’ of terrorism: UN chief

World News in Brief: Houthis order US-UK staffers to leave, cholera response scales up in Somalia, teachers vital to fight against hate speech

Confirming the order from the de facto authorities, who control the capital Sana’a along with many other areas of the war-torn country, UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric told reporters that the demand ran counter to the legal conditions under which UN and other NGOs operate. Yemen descended into all out conflict in 2015 with Houthi rebels… Continue reading World News in Brief: Houthis order US-UK staffers to leave, cholera response scales up in Somalia, teachers vital to fight against hate speech

Displacement misery continues for Gazans, UN humanitarians warn

Echoing those concerns, UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned in a tweet on X that in addition to the threat of being killed, Gazans faced a growing risk of disease, just as health services were collapsing.  Only 16 out of 36 hospitals “are even partly functional”, Mr. Guterres said. In another post on social media, UN emergency… Continue reading Displacement misery continues for Gazans, UN humanitarians warn

First Person: In post-war Sudan ‘I know we will fight hard to heal from the trauma’

Mr. Ginish is a National Field Coordinator with the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Sudan. He recounts his experience of being evacuated from Khartoum, life in Port Sudan, and how he and his colleagues are trying to help the millions caught up in the conflict. “Before the outbreak of violence on… Continue reading First Person: In post-war Sudan ‘I know we will fight hard to heal from the trauma’

World News in Brief: UN deplores latest strikes on Ukraine, surge in Rohingya deaths at sea, greater investment in decent jobs

“I was having coffee at home this morning in Kyiv, my neighbours were getting ready for work, children preparing to go to school, when our homes started to shake because of a wave of airstrikes on the Ukrainian capital,” Denise Brown said in a statement. The attacks damaged civilian buildings just next to the UN… Continue reading World News in Brief: UN deplores latest strikes on Ukraine, surge in Rohingya deaths at sea, greater investment in decent jobs

Gaza fighting spreads into hospitals where there’s ‘no way in and out’

Global perspective Human stories A 3-year-old boy recovers after having his leg amputated following a direct missile strike on his home in Nuseirat city in the central Gaza Strip. (file) 23 January 2024Humanitarian Aid Amid continuing heavy fighting in Gaza on Tuesday morning including reported attacks on hospitals in the southern city of Khan Younis,… Continue reading Gaza fighting spreads into hospitals where there’s ‘no way in and out’

Biodiversity: What is it, and how can we protect it?

What does ‘biodiversity’ mean and why is it important? In simple terms, biodiversity refers to all types of life on earth. The UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), describes it as “the diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems, including plants, animals, bacteria, and fungi”. These three levels work together to create life on… Continue reading Biodiversity: What is it, and how can we protect it?

UN expert says human rights violations rage on in Sudan

The independent expert outlined what’s been happening on the ground as violence and displacement continue to ripple across the country following the outbreak of clashes between the national army and RSF militia in April 2023. Out of 45 million people, more than seven million have been displaced, with some seeking safety in neighbouring nations, and… Continue reading UN expert says human rights violations rage on in Sudan

Ukraine: UN rights office deplores attack in Russian-occupied Donetsk

Meanwhile, in New York, the Security Council met once again to discuss the war stemming from Russia’s invasion that will mark its bloody two-year anniversary next month. At least 27 civilians were reportedly killed and a further 25 injured in the Donetsk attacks that struck local markets and a nearby residential area in the city,… Continue reading Ukraine: UN rights office deplores attack in Russian-occupied Donetsk

25,000 killed in Gaza war as humanitarian needs go on rising

22 January 2024Humanitarian Aid “Intense” Israeli bombardment in Gaza continued on Monday along with rocket fire into Israel by Palestinian armed groups as UN humanitarians reported that more than 25,000 have died in the enclave since war began on 7 October. Citing Gaza’s health authorities, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)… Continue reading 25,000 killed in Gaza war as humanitarian needs go on rising

Guterres urges G-77 and China to drive momentum for global governance reform

More than 130 countries are members of the bloc – the largest grouping of the global South, representing 80 percent of the planet’s population – and their solidarity and partnership are essential to building a sustainable, peaceful, and just world for all, he said. “Let us face it: those that benefit most from the present… Continue reading Guterres urges G-77 and China to drive momentum for global governance reform

At Non-Aligned Movement summit, Guterres repeats call for Gaza ceasefire, release of hostages

Leaders from the 120-member bloc met amid deep division globally, including rising geopolitical tensions, climate catastrophe, widespread poverty and raging conflict in Sudan, Ukraine and Gaza. Danger and constraints “Following the abhorrent Hamas attacks on 7 October, the wholesale destruction of Gaza and the number of civilian casualties in such a short period are totally… Continue reading At Non-Aligned Movement summit, Guterres repeats call for Gaza ceasefire, release of hostages

Carnage in Gaza: ‘How much is enough?’ asks UN Assembly President

19 January 2024Peace and Security The President of the UN General Assembly on Friday reiterated his call for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and the release of all hostages as the “only credible course of action” to address the conflict. Addressing the 19th Non-Aligned Summit in the Ugandan capital, Kampala, President Dennis Francis urged the… Continue reading Carnage in Gaza: ‘How much is enough?’ asks UN Assembly President

World News in Brief: Congo flood response, tourism bounces back, alert over Sudan’s ancient pyramids

Some 1.8 million people have been impacted by torrential downpours that have dumped double the usual amount of rainfall on the Congo, impacting nine out of the country’s 12 departments. In the three weeks since the government in Brazzaville declared an emergency, the floods have destroyed or damaged 34 health facilities, 120 schools, and over… Continue reading World News in Brief: Congo flood response, tourism bounces back, alert over Sudan’s ancient pyramids

Two mothers killed each hour in Gaza conflict: UN Women

19 January 2024Women Women and children account for roughly 70 per cent of people killed in the war in Gaza, with two mothers killed every hour since hostilities erupted more than 100 days ago, according to a UN Women report published on Friday.  The report examines the gendered impact of the conflict, which has left… Continue reading Two mothers killed each hour in Gaza conflict: UN Women

Gaza crisis: Babies being born ‘into hell’ amid desperate aid shortages

Reiterating urgent international calls for a ceasefire, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reported that there have been nearly 20,000 births since the start of widespread Israeli bombardment, in response to Hamas-led attacks in Israel that left some 1,200 dead and approximately 250 taken hostage. Chronic aid access problems have meant that Caesarean sections have been… Continue reading Gaza crisis: Babies being born ‘into hell’ amid desperate aid shortages

World News in Brief: Iran-Pakistan airstrikes, Sudan war crimes probe, AI and healthcare, human rights in global finance

Iran on Wednesday reportedly carried out surprise attacks both inside Pakistan and Iraq which involved using precision missile and drone strikes targeting Sunni terrorist training camps in southwest Balochistan, in order to deter a planned terrorist incursion. The Iranian attacks followed a suicide bombing operation carried out by ISIL militants that killed more than 80… Continue reading World News in Brief: Iran-Pakistan airstrikes, Sudan war crimes probe, AI and healthcare, human rights in global finance

Gaza aid obstacles continue to delay vital relief

18 January 2024Humanitarian Aid Medicines for Israeli hostages were reportedly allowed into Gaza for the first time on Thursday along with a consignment of relief supplies for Palestinians, under an agreement brokered by Qatar and France. UN humanitarians are warning the level of assistance for many Gazans is now “almost catastrophic”. The development came as… Continue reading Gaza aid obstacles continue to delay vital relief

Gaza health system collapsing, as UN agencies renew ceasefire call

Sean Casey, WHO Health Emergency Officer, was speaking fresh from a more than five-week visit to the war-torn enclave, where he said convoys have faced access and security constraints, as well as movement limitations.  “The last week that I was in Gaza, we tried every single day for seven days to deliver fuel and supplies… Continue reading Gaza health system collapsing, as UN agencies renew ceasefire call

World News in Brief: Rights chief calls for calm in Comoros, DR Congo update, northern Ethiopia beset by ‘multiple crises’

Incumbent President of the island archipelago off the east African coast, Azali Assoumani, was re-elected for a fourth term.   However, the turnout was reportedly only 16 per cent and opposition parties denounced the elections as “fraudulent”, according to media reports. In a statement released by his office (OHCHR) on Wednesday, Volker Türk called on… Continue reading World News in Brief: Rights chief calls for calm in Comoros, DR Congo update, northern Ethiopia beset by ‘multiple crises’

New UN coordinator for Gaza in Egypt to ‘expedite all areas’ of aid

17 January 2024Humanitarian Aid The UN Senior Humanitarian and Reconstruction Coordinator for Gaza is in Egypt this week in efforts to scale-up assistance to the enclave, where more than 100 days of war between Israel and Hamas militants have left most of the population in dire need of food, water, medicines and other basic items. … Continue reading New UN coordinator for Gaza in Egypt to ‘expedite all areas’ of aid

Gaza crisis: Back two-State solution urges UN chief, ‘once and for all’

Speaking at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the UN chief condemned the “barbaric” Hamas-led attacks on 7 October in which approximately 1,200 people were butchered in southern Israel and some 250 taken as hostages. And amid reports of ongoing heavy Israeli bombardment which has left tens of thousands of civilians dead and… Continue reading Gaza crisis: Back two-State solution urges UN chief, ‘once and for all’

World News in Brief: Peacekeeper killed in CAR, Sudan war update, media clampdown in Kyrgyzstan

Five other ‘blue helmets’ were injured during the attack which happened when their vehicle hit an explosive device in Mbindali, in Ouham-Pendé Prefecture, northwest of Paoua. “The Secretary-General offers his sincere condolences to the family of the victim and to the Government of Cameroon and wishes a speedy recovery to the wounded”, said António Guterres, in a… Continue reading World News in Brief: Peacekeeper killed in CAR, Sudan war update, media clampdown in Kyrgyzstan

Ukraine: Civilian casualties spike following wave of Russian attacks

Global perspective Human stories The city of Dnipro in eastern Ukraine was hit by renewed missile attacks. 16 January 2024Human Rights Recent weeks have seen a steep increase in civilian casualties in Ukraine following an intensification of Russian attacks, the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in the country, HRMMU, said in a new report issued… Continue reading Ukraine: Civilian casualties spike following wave of Russian attacks

Gaza: Fewer than 1 in 4 aid missions given green light, says OCHA

16 January 2024Humanitarian Aid The Israeli authorities have continued to block lifesaving aid from reaching northern Gaza 102 days since Hamas-led terror attacks triggered the war, UN humanitarians have insisted, just as UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned that “the long shadow of starvation” stalks the people of Gaza. “In the first two weeks of January,… Continue reading Gaza: Fewer than 1 in 4 aid missions given green light, says OCHA

World News in Brief: Emergency funds for Sudan refugees, democracy prevails in Guatemala, climate change in Iraq

The funds will be used to build shelters, offer cash assistance, build water, sanitation and hygiene facilities, and support onward transportation for new arrivals who are staying in overcrowded transit sites, said the UN Spokesperson, Stéphane Dujarric, briefing reporters on Monday. “We are anticipating that thousands of additional people may cross the borders into South… Continue reading World News in Brief: Emergency funds for Sudan refugees, democracy prevails in Guatemala, climate change in Iraq

UN chief reiterates Gaza ceasefire call, condemns ‘collective punishment’ of Palestinians

Addressing reporters at UN Headquarters in New York on Monday, the UN chief expressed deep concern about the “unprecedented” level of civilian casualties and the “catastrophic” humanitarian conditions in the enclave. “There is one solution to help address all these issues. We need an immediate humanitarian ceasefire,” he stressed. Release hostages He recalled the 7… Continue reading UN chief reiterates Gaza ceasefire call, condemns ‘collective punishment’ of Palestinians

UN urges radical change to aid relief access in Gaza amid fresh famine fears

“People in Gaza risk dying of hunger just miles from trucks filled with food,” said head of the UN World Food Programme (WFP) Cindy McCain, in an appeal also backed by the heads of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the UN health agency WHO. The UN and aid partners have been providing food to… Continue reading UN urges radical change to aid relief access in Gaza amid fresh famine fears

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to meet on widening crisis in the Middle East

12 January 2024Peace and Security The UN Security Council is set to meet at 3:00 PM New York time and is due to hold two meetings on the worsening situation across the Middle East, looking first at threats of forced displacement from Gaza and then the escalating conflict in and around the Red Sea –… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to meet on widening crisis in the Middle East

WMO confirms 2023 as warmest year on record ‘by a huge margin’

Global perspective Human stories 2023 was the hottest year on record, globally. 12 January 2024Climate and Environment With the annual average global temperature fast approaching the critical threshold of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, last year officially smashed the global temperature record, the UN weather agency (WMO) confirmed on Friday. The World Meteorological Organization uses six… Continue reading WMO confirms 2023 as warmest year on record ‘by a huge margin’

Gaza ceasefire ‘more urgent than ever’ as conflict approaches 100-day mark

Speaking ahead of Sunday’s grim milestone, Spokesperson Liz Throssell reiterated the need for OHCHR staff to have access to Israel and all parts of the Occupied Palestinian Territory to investigate human rights violations by all parties. Fourteen weeks have passed since Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups carried out bloody attacks against Israel on 7… Continue reading Gaza ceasefire ‘more urgent than ever’ as conflict approaches 100-day mark

War against Hamas in Gaza is act of self-defence, Israel tells world court

On the second and final day of preliminary hearings at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), Israel’s legal team insisted that the twin military objectives were to eradicate the existential threat posed by Hamas militants and to free some 136 hostages still held in the war-shattered enclave. “Israel is in a war of defence against… Continue reading War against Hamas in Gaza is act of self-defence, Israel tells world court

Jan 3, Tech x Religion Feature Reporting Fellowships

Tech x Religion Feature Reporting Fellowships Rest of World is an international nonprofit newsroom that challenges expectations about whose experiences with technology matter. We connect dots across a rapidly evolving digital world, through on-the-ground reporting in places typically overlooked and underestimated. Since launching in 2020, we’ve published stories from nearly 100 countries outside the West.… Continue reading Jan 3, Tech x Religion Feature Reporting Fellowships

Russian strikes continue to wreak havoc across Ukraine

11 January 2024Peace and Security Russian strikes have continued to “wreak havoc” on Ukrainian cities, causing death and destruction and leaving millions of civilians without access to vital services, the UN aid coordination office (OCHA) said on Thursday. In a flash update, the Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said that since the intensification… Continue reading Russian strikes continue to wreak havoc across Ukraine

UN underlines need to move forward on peace efforts in Colombia

Global perspective Human stories A mural in Arauca in Colombia promotes a message of women behind social change and equality. 11 January 2024Peace and Security Recent developments in Colombia have highlighted the need to move forward in implementing the 2016 peace agreement signed by the Government and the FARC-EP militia group, UN Special Representative Carlos… Continue reading UN underlines need to move forward on peace efforts in Colombia

Contrasting political challenges emerge in West Africa: Top envoy

Briefing ambassadors in the Security Council, Leonardo Santos Simão, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General, said that while some nations have made significant democratic strides, others have been subject to military takeovers, posing wider threats to regional stability. The presidential election in Liberia and the peaceful transfer of power was a decisive political moment for… Continue reading Contrasting political challenges emerge in West Africa: Top envoy

Recurring denials hamper aid delivery to north Gaza

The rate of access denials by Israel so far this month marks a “significant deterioration” over December, OCHA said in its latest update, issued late on Wednesday. Between 1 and 10 January, only three out of 21 planned deliveries of food, medicines, water, and other lifesaving items to the north of Wadi Gaza got through, it revealed. Denials, delays and… Continue reading Recurring denials hamper aid delivery to north Gaza

Gaza: South Africa levels accusations of ‘genocidal conduct’ against Israel at world court

11 January 2024Peace and Security South Africa addressed the UN’s highest court on Thursday in a bid to end the mass killing of civilians in Gaza, accusing Israel of carrying out genocide against Palestinians there – a claim that Israel has strongly denied as “baseless”. The development came amid the ongoing and massive Israeli bombardment across… Continue reading Gaza: South Africa levels accusations of ‘genocidal conduct’ against Israel at world court

Security Council strongly condemns Houthi attacks on Red Sea shipping

10 January 2024Peace and Security The UN Security Council on Wednesday passed a resolution condemning “in the strongest terms” the multiple attacks by Houthi rebels off the coast of Yemen which have disrupted global trade and raised fears of further spillover from the war in Gaza. Russia first proposed three amendments to the draft text… Continue reading Security Council strongly condemns Houthi attacks on Red Sea shipping

World News in Brief: UN helicopter captured in Somalia, Ecuador violence condemned, new Human Rights Council president

The helicopter was captured after it was forced to make an emergency landing in an area controlled by the armed group, according to international media reports. “I can confirm that there was an incident involving a UN-contracted helicopter that took place today in Galmudug in Somalia,” UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric told journalists in New York… Continue reading World News in Brief: UN helicopter captured in Somalia, Ecuador violence condemned, new Human Rights Council president

‘No end in sight’ to Ukraine war, UN political chief warns

Rosemary DiCarlo underscored the UN’s steadfast commitment to support all meaningful efforts towards a just, sustainable, and comprehensive peace. The full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine began on 24 February 2022 and the Council has met more than 100 times to discuss the “harrowing consequences”, she recalled.  War must stop  “And yet, here we are, on… Continue reading ‘No end in sight’ to Ukraine war, UN political chief warns

Aid mission denials are latest threat to Gaza’s hospitals: OCHA

Amid new reports of intensified bombing and clashes across the Strip on Wednesday, OCHA said that requests had been denied five times since 26 December to reach the Central Drug Store in Gaza city and Al Awda Hospital in Jabalya, further north. “At the same time, the continued denial of fuel delivery to water and… Continue reading Aid mission denials are latest threat to Gaza’s hospitals: OCHA

UPDATED: Aid relief arriving in Gaza but ‘too little, too late’, warns WHO

“Even if there is no ceasefire, you would expect humanitarian corridors to operate… in a much more sustained way than what’s happening now,” said Dr Rik Peeperkorn, WHO Representative for the Occupied Palestinian Territory. “It’s too little. It’s too late and specifically in the north.” Begging for food Humanitarian assistance – and particularly food – is… Continue reading UPDATED: Aid relief arriving in Gaza but ‘too little, too late’, warns WHO

General Assembly meets over Gaza veto by US in Security Council

Assembly Vice President Cheikh Niang of Senegal, holding the gavel in the General Assembly Hall and deputizing for President Dennis Francis, read out a statement on his behalf. General Assembly Vice President Cheikh Niang chairs the Emergency Special Session meets on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question. Mr. Francis said he… Continue reading General Assembly meets over Gaza veto by US in Security Council

World News in Brief: Time for climate justice urges UN chief, Ukraine war update, call for ‘free and fair’ elections

Under the deal agreed by 193 countries in 2015 in the French capital, sticking to the limit will help humankind avoid the worst impacts of rising temperatures. This month is also on track to be so warm that for the first time ever, a 12-month cycle may exceed the 1.5°C threshold, according to Europe’s Copernicus… Continue reading World News in Brief: Time for climate justice urges UN chief, Ukraine war update, call for ‘free and fair’ elections

Gaza crisis: another hospital facing dire shortages, warns WHO

In central Gaza, the UN World Health Organization (WHO) warned on Sunday that medics at the only functioning hospital in Deir al Balah governorate “had been forced to cease lifesaving and other critical activities…and leave” after an evacuation order issued amid “increasing” Israeli military activity. Only five doctors reportedly remain at Al-Aqsa Hospital in the… Continue reading Gaza crisis: another hospital facing dire shortages, warns WHO

World News in Brief, Bangladesh democracy call, accountability for Israeli victims of sexual violence, plastic pollution in the Antarctic, powering Ukraine

High Commissioner Volker Türk voiced his concern that Sunday’s poll which saw Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina secure a fifth term in office, was “marred by violence and repression of opposition candidates and supporters”, according to a press release from rights office OHCHR. “In the months leading up to the vote, thousands of opposition supporters have… Continue reading World News in Brief, Bangladesh democracy call, accountability for Israeli victims of sexual violence, plastic pollution in the Antarctic, powering Ukraine

Nearly 600 attacks on healthcare in Gaza and West Bank since war began: WHO

Some 613 people have died within health facilities in the Occupied Palestinian Territory since 7 October last year – 606 in Gaza and seven in the West Bank – and more than 770 have been injured, according to latest data on healthcare attacks  from the World Health Organization (WHO). Condemning the continuing fighting and bombardment,… Continue reading Nearly 600 attacks on healthcare in Gaza and West Bank since war began: WHO

First Person: Christmas under rocket fire in Ukraine

In Ukraine, there was no respite from war over the holiday period, neither for the country’s citizens, nor the UN workers attempting to deliver aid and support, a senior official for the UN migration agency (IOM) told UN News. Yuri Rudenko, National Programme Officer for IOM Ukraine, was on leave in his hometown of Dnipro on… Continue reading First Person: Christmas under rocket fire in Ukraine

World News in Brief: Griffiths demands end to ‘ruinous’ Sudan conflict, Ukraine-Russia prisoner exchange, Iran bombings latest

The UN Emergency Relief Coordinator said in a statement that as the conflict continues to spread “human suffering is deepening, humanitarian access is shrinking and hope is dwindling.” He said a grim turning point between government troops and their rival RSF militia has been reached with the recent fighting in Aj Jazirah state, the country’s… Continue reading World News in Brief: Griffiths demands end to ‘ruinous’ Sudan conflict, Ukraine-Russia prisoner exchange, Iran bombings latest

Gaza crisis deepens as UN aid convoys face delays and obstacles

In its latest alert on the deteriorating situation for 1.9 million displaced people in the Strip, UN aid coordination office OCHA blamed “delays and denials” along with active conflict for the lack of distribution beyond Wadi Gaza. “This includes medicines that would have provided vital support to more than 100,000 people for 30 days, as well… Continue reading Gaza crisis deepens as UN aid convoys face delays and obstacles

Gaza war: ‘Intense ground battles’ reported, hospital hit kills five

Airstrikes and missiles struck dwellings and public buildings on Tuesday including Al-Amal hospital in Khan Younis killing five, among them a five-day-old baby, reports indicate. “No child in the world should be killed, let alone one sheltering under the emblem of a humanitarian organisation; this has to end,” said Gemma Connell, a team leader from… Continue reading Gaza war: ‘Intense ground battles’ reported, hospital hit kills five

Guterres strongly condemns attack in Iran; over 80 reportedly killed

More than 170 people have also been wounded according to Iranian officials at the scene. News reports citing local officials said that there were two explosions as thousands were walking along the route to a cemetery in Kerman which is the final resting place of Qassim Suleimani, who was killed in a US drone strike… Continue reading Guterres strongly condemns attack in Iran; over 80 reportedly killed

Security Council meets over Red Sea attacks amid growing threat of spillover from Gaza war

Key points: UN Assistant Secretary-General Khaled Khiari said “no cause or grievance” could justify continuing Houthi attacks against freedom of navigation in the Red Sea All incidents originating in Houthi controlled areas “must stop” He encouraged “all concerned parties” in the wider region to avoid any further escalation and de-escalate tensions and threats Called for… Continue reading Security Council meets over Red Sea attacks amid growing threat of spillover from Gaza war

UPDATED: Everyone is hungry in Gaza, warn UN humanitarians

The latest warnings from UN relief agency for Palestinians UNRWA and the UN World Food Programme, WFP, highlighted the threat of starvation and disease in heavily built-up areas, where tens of thousands of people have fled intense bombing campaigns in the enclave’s north and centre. Skipping meals “Everyone in Gaza is hungry! Skipping meals is… Continue reading UPDATED: Everyone is hungry in Gaza, warn UN humanitarians

Last UN peacekeepers poised for complete withdrawal from Mali

The UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) was deployed to Mali in 2013 following a violent insurrection by separatist rebels attempting to take control of the north of the country and a subsequent military-led coup. Established by UN Security Council resolution 2100, the mission included more than 15,000 troops and personnel who served… Continue reading Last UN peacekeepers poised for complete withdrawal from Mali

Security Council holds emergency meeting on attacks in Belgorod, Russia

At least 18 civilians were killed and more than 100 injured in an attack on Belgorod, said Khaled Khiari, Assistant Secretary-General in the UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (UN DPPA), briefing the Council on the latest developments. Russia had called for the emergency meeting following reported attacks on Belogorod. Located about 40 km… Continue reading Security Council holds emergency meeting on attacks in Belgorod, Russia

Security Council discusses crisis in the Middle East; UN chief warns of conflict’s ‘further spillover’

Highlights Video feed of the Security Council meeting. Khaled Khiari, Assistant Secretary-General for the Middle East at the UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (DPPA) briefed the Security Council, expressing grave concern over Israeli settler violence in the occupied West Bank. He also reported increased tensions in the wider Middle East region, with continued… Continue reading Security Council discusses crisis in the Middle East; UN chief warns of conflict’s ‘further spillover’

Gaza: UN calls for urgent aid scale-up amid new mass exodus to Rafah

“A traumatized and exhausted population” is being “crammed into a smaller and smaller sliver of land,” UN emergency relief chief Martin Griffiths warned on social platform X on Friday. But serious obstacles persist to bringing more aid to those in need amid relentless Israeli bombardment and intense fighting on the ground. UN humanitarian affairs coordination… Continue reading Gaza: UN calls for urgent aid scale-up amid new mass exodus to Rafah

UN chief condemns Russian attacks against Ukrainian cities and towns

Overnight, Russian armed forces reportedly launched 158 missiles and drones in several waves targeting locations across Ukraine, including in Kyiv, Lviv, Kharkiv, Khmelnytskyi, Dnipropetrovsk, Sumy, Cherkasy, Odesa and Zaporizhzhia regions. In a statement issued by his spokesperson, Secretary-General António Guterres underscored that attacks against civilians and civilian infrastructure “violate international humanitarian law, are unacceptable and… Continue reading UN chief condemns Russian attacks against Ukrainian cities and towns

UN rights chief warns of ‘dehumanization’ of Palestinians amid West Bank violence as Gaza crisis deepens

Commenting on a new report on the West Bank released by his office, OHCHR, Mr. Türk expressed concern at the use of military means and weapons by law enforcement, movement restrictions affecting Palestinians and a sharp rise in settler violence resulting in the displacement of herding communities. “The dehumanization of Palestinians that characterizes many of the… Continue reading UN rights chief warns of ‘dehumanization’ of Palestinians amid West Bank violence as Gaza crisis deepens

Rebuild trust and restore hope in 2024: UN chief’s call

Global perspective Human stories UN Secretary-General António Guterres. 28 December 2023Peace and Security United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has called for global unity to make 2024 a year for “building trust and hope” following the immense suffering, violence, and climate chaos that characterized 2023. “Humanity is strongest when we stand together. 2024 must be a… Continue reading Rebuild trust and restore hope in 2024: UN chief’s call

Gaza crisis: southern areas ‘bursting at seams’ amid new wave of bombing and displacement

27 December 2023Peace and Security Aid missions to supply Gaza have become increasingly difficult amid reports of continued heavy bombing of the Strip overnight by the Israeli military and intense clashes “in most areas” with Hamas fighters, UN humanitarians warned on Wednesday. Locations in the north and south of the enclave were hit as Israeli… Continue reading Gaza crisis: southern areas ‘bursting at seams’ amid new wave of bombing and displacement

UNICEF deplores deadly Christmas Day attack on family in Haiti

27 December 2023Peace and Security The UN Children’s Fund, UNICEF, has denounced a deadly Christmas Day attack by an armed group on a family in Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince. Four people, including two girls under the age of 10, were killed in the incident, which occured in the Croix de Bouquet district. Four other family members… Continue reading UNICEF deplores deadly Christmas Day attack on family in Haiti

WHO and partners deliver aid to two Gaza hospitals in high-risk missions

Teams that undertook the high-risk missions witnessed intense hostilities in their vicinity, as well as high patient loads and overcrowding caused by people seeking refuge. They also reported that food needs remain dire across the enclave, which is impacting operations, with hungry people stopping convoys in hopes of finding something to eat. WHO Director-General Tedros… Continue reading WHO and partners deliver aid to two Gaza hospitals in high-risk missions

Gaza health workers pushed to the limit amid airstrike ‘carnage’

World Health Organization (WHO) Emergency Medical Teams coordinator Sean Casey said that “100-plus patients” had been brought into Al-Aqsa Hospital on Monday in the space of 30 minutes, following reported blasts, including near Al-Maghazi refugee camp.  All of them needed urgent treatment for serious wounds, the WHO official told UN News, while “about 100” more… Continue reading Gaza health workers pushed to the limit amid airstrike ‘carnage’

UN envoy welcomes ‘significant step’ towards ceasefire in Yemen

Global perspective Human stories A child fetches clean water at a camp for displaced people in Dar Saad in Yemen. (file) 26 December 2023Peace and Security The UN Special Envoy for Yemen has welcomed steps towards a ceasefire in the war-torn country, where Government forces, backed by a Saudi-led coalition, and Houthi rebels have been… Continue reading UN envoy welcomes ‘significant step’ towards ceasefire in Yemen

World News in Brief: Senior Humanitarian Coordinator for Gaza, cholera spreading in Sudan, aid for eastern Ukraine

Holland’s outgoing Deputy Prime Minister Sigrid Kaag will facilitate, coordinate, monitor and verify aid consignments to the embittered enclave, in line with a recent Security Council resolution. She will also establish a mechanism to accelerate humanitarian relief shipments through States that are not party to the conflict. She is expected to take up the assignment… Continue reading World News in Brief: Senior Humanitarian Coordinator for Gaza, cholera spreading in Sudan, aid for eastern Ukraine

Humanitarian ceasefire only way to end Gaza ‘nightmare’: Guterres

Mr. Guterres was speaking at a press briefing at UN Headquarters shortly after the resolution was adopted. There has been no significant change in the way the war has been unfolding in Gaza, he said, with no effective protection of civilians. Israeli bombardment continues while Hamas and other factions continue to fire rockets into the… Continue reading Humanitarian ceasefire only way to end Gaza ‘nightmare’: Guterres

World News in Brief: UN chief shocked by Czech mass shooting, UNICEF appeal for West and Central Africa, world leaders urged to heed climate science

At least 14 people were killed and 25 injured after a gunman opened fire in what some media called the worst shooting in the country’s history. The gunman, reportedly a student at the university, also killed himself. UN chief António Guerres was shocked and saddened by the incident, his Spokesperson said in a statement issued later on… Continue reading World News in Brief: UN chief shocked by Czech mass shooting, UNICEF appeal for West and Central Africa, world leaders urged to heed climate science

Gaza crisis: Starvation must never be allowed to happen, says UN rights chief

Global perspective Human stories A displaced Palestinian family now living in a makeshift camp in southern Gaza without water, electricity, or enough food (file) 22 December 2023Humanitarian Aid As the Security Council prepared to meet once again in New York on Friday for a long-delayed vote on a pause in fighting to allow more aid… Continue reading Gaza crisis: Starvation must never be allowed to happen, says UN rights chief

World News in Brief: Latest Sudan fighting displaces thousands, second malaria vaccine, Russian dissidents ‘disappeared’

21 December 2023Peace and Security The latest surge in fighting in Sudan has displaced up to 300,000 people as conflict spread to the country’s second largest city, Wad Madani, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said on Thursday.  Wad Madani is located some 140 kilometres southeast of the war-torn capital Khartoum and sits at the… Continue reading World News in Brief: Latest Sudan fighting displaces thousands, second malaria vaccine, Russian dissidents ‘disappeared’

‘Genuine progress’ towards political solution, essential to end war: UN envoy

Briefing ambassadors at the Security Council, Geir Pedersen, UN Special Envoy for Syria, noted that though there have been some diplomatic breakthroughs none led to tangible changes on the ground for civilians. He also raised the alarm over the impact on the region of the devastating Israel-Palestine crisis. On top of killings, injuries, displacement, abduction… Continue reading ‘Genuine progress’ towards political solution, essential to end war: UN envoy

Security Council continues negotiations over Gaza resolution calling for ‘urgent suspension’ of fighting

21 December 2023Peace and Security After intense negotiations all week behind closed doors at the 15-member Security Council, ambassadors are still negotiating over a draft resolution penned by the United Arab Emirates which calls for an “urgent suspension” of the conflict to allow safe and unhindered delivery of aid to stricken civilians in the Gaza… Continue reading Security Council continues negotiations over Gaza resolution calling for ‘urgent suspension’ of fighting

Injured patients ‘waiting to die’ in northern Gaza as last hospital shuts down: WHO

The latest grave assessment from the World Health Organization (WHO) came after UN teams reached Al Ahli Arab hospital and Al Shifa hospital on Wednesday, amid reports of intensifying ground operations by Israeli Defense Forces and continuing airstrikes in the Gaza Strip, in response to Hamas’s 7 October terror attacks on southern Israel.  “Patients were… Continue reading Injured patients ‘waiting to die’ in northern Gaza as last hospital shuts down: WHO

INTERVIEW: Ukrainian children express ‘innocent hope for peace’

The deaths of over 10,000 civilians have been verified by the UN human rights office (OHCHR) since the invasion began in February 2022, although the actual number of fatalities could be much higher.  Over 10 million people have been forced to flee their homes, including more than 6.3 million who have sought refuge outside Ukraine.… Continue reading INTERVIEW: Ukrainian children express ‘innocent hope for peace’

World News in Brief: WFP forced to halt some food aid in Sudan, DR Congo elections, peacekeeping chief visits CAR

WFP described the decision taken on safety grounds as a major setback to humanitarian efforts in the country’s breadbasket, where staff had been regularly providing aid to over 800,000 people, including many who had escaped the fighting in Khartoum. The ongoing fighting makes it extremely challenging for humanitarian agencies to safely deliver assistance, especially with… Continue reading World News in Brief: WFP forced to halt some food aid in Sudan, DR Congo elections, peacekeeping chief visits CAR

Afghanistan: Taliban’s return to ‘international norms’ is non-negotiable says UN mission chief

Roza Otunbayeva, who also heads the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), also underscored the need for greater engagement with the de facto Taliban authorities who seized power in August 2021. She told the Council that the human rights situation in Afghanistan is characterized by systemic discrimination against women and girls, repression of political dissent… Continue reading Afghanistan: Taliban’s return to ‘international norms’ is non-negotiable says UN mission chief

Barely a drop of safe water to drink in Gaza, UN aid agency warns

“Access to sufficient amounts of clean water is a matter of life and death…children in Gaza have barely a drop to drink,” said UNICEF Executive Director Catherine Russell. “Children and their families are having to use water from unsafe sources that are highly salinated or polluted. Without safe water, many more children will die from deprivation… Continue reading Barely a drop of safe water to drink in Gaza, UN aid agency warns

INTERVIEW: Destruction, displacement, and grief. Senior UNRWA official reflects on ‘unprecedented’ conflict in Gaza

135 UNRWA staff members are known to have been killed in Gaza since the escalation of fighting since the 7 October Hamas attacks on Israel. That’s the most ever in one incident but, despite the danger and extremely difficult working conditions, UNRWA is continuing to assist those caught up in the fighting through no fault… Continue reading INTERVIEW: Destruction, displacement, and grief. Senior UNRWA official reflects on ‘unprecedented’ conflict in Gaza

World News in Brief: DR Congo mission extended, Sudan displacement deepens, warzone death toll for journalists spikes

The Mission, known as MONUSCO, has been in the country for two decades and is in the process of drawing down. MONUSCO will remain there until 20 December 2024 with a core mandate that includes protecting civilians, supporting security sector reform, and assisting in disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) processes. Elections and insecurity  The Council… Continue reading World News in Brief: DR Congo mission extended, Sudan displacement deepens, warzone death toll for journalists spikes

Ukraine: Türk calls on Russia to silence the guns in appeal for ‘a just peace’

Since the onset of the invasion the UN human rights office (OHCHR) has meticulously monitored the situation. As of December 4, there have been over 10,000 civilian deaths, including 560 children, with an additional 18,500 civilians confirmed injured, with actual figures believed to be much higher due to the difficulties of verifying figures. “I feel… Continue reading Ukraine: Türk calls on Russia to silence the guns in appeal for ‘a just peace’

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council due to vote again on Gaza

10:50AM The United States ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative Robert Wood, told the meeting that the attacks by Hamas of October 7 “must be condemned” and the extremist group must not be allowed to control Gaza in the future. Deputy Permanent Representative Robert A. Wood of the United States addresses the UN Security Council meeting… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council due to vote again on Gaza

‘Ten weeks of hell’ for children in Gaza

Gaza is by far the most dangerous place in the world to be a child and deaths of youngsters from disease will likely surpass those from bombardment in the absence of a ceasefire, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warned on Tuesday.

Effort to restart Iran nuclear deal ‘at a standstill’ Security Council hears

18 December 2023Peace and Security Despite appeals to all those involved in the stalled deal to ensure Iran does not develop nuclear weapons, “diplomatic efforts remain at a standstill”, the UN’s political affairs chief told the Security Council on Monday. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreed in 2015 lays out the rules for… Continue reading Effort to restart Iran nuclear deal ‘at a standstill’ Security Council hears

UN envoy to Libyan leaders: Resolve impasse, do not fail the people

Abdoulaye Bathily, UN Special Representative for Libya, told ambassadors on the Security Council that the mood in the country “is ripe for a new political deal, a new dispensation for a brighter future”. “One group of unwilling officials clinging to their seats must not be allowed to fail the people of Libya and put the… Continue reading UN envoy to Libyan leaders: Resolve impasse, do not fail the people

World News in Brief: Wave of ‘fear and dread’ in Ukraine, UN expert slams Navalny disappearance, youth leaders for nuclear disarmament meet

That’s according to UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Regional Director Regina De Dominicis who said in a statement on Monday that bombardment was “particularly unrelenting” in the east and south of the country. The UNICEF official said the past week provided a concerning trend with an increase in ballistic missiles and mass drone attacks, including widespread… Continue reading World News in Brief: Wave of ‘fear and dread’ in Ukraine, UN expert slams Navalny disappearance, youth leaders for nuclear disarmament meet

Gaza hospital destroyed, WHO chief reiterates ceasefire call

18 December 2023Peace and Security The head of the UN health agency Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has spoken out against the “effective destruction” of a hospital in northern Gaza by Israeli forces over the weekend, leading to the deaths of eight patients including a nine-year-old child. Kamal Adwan Hospital was raided by the Israeli military over… Continue reading Gaza hospital destroyed, WHO chief reiterates ceasefire call

Security Council condemns deadly terror attack on Iran police station

17 December 2023Peace and Security The members of the Security Council have condemned Friday’s assault on a police station in southern Iran, in which 11 Iranian police officers were killed, and eight critically wounded. The attack on the Rasak police station in the southeastern Sistan and Baluchistan province, which is prone to unrest, was claimed… Continue reading Security Council condemns deadly terror attack on Iran police station

UN workers delivering aid to Gaza hospital describe ‘bloodbath’ in overflowing emergency department

16 December 2023Health UN workers delivering medical supplies to the Al-Shifa Hospital in north Gaza on 16 December have described the emergency department as a “bloodbath”, with hundreds of injured people inside, and a constant flow of new patients. According to the team, Patients with trauma injuries were being sutured on the floor, limited to no… Continue reading UN workers delivering aid to Gaza hospital describe ‘bloodbath’ in overflowing emergency department

Over 700 a day dying from small arms fire; main ‘weapons of choice’ for criminals and terrorists

15 December 2023Peace and Security Amidst a multitude of global crises and escalating of armed conflicts, small arms and light weapons remain a silent killer, having claimed over 260,000 lives during 2021, amounting to 45 per cent of all violent deaths. That’s according to Izumi Nakamitsu, High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, who briefed the Security… Continue reading Over 700 a day dying from small arms fire; main ‘weapons of choice’ for criminals and terrorists

Gaza: UN welcomes Kerem Shalom border crossing announcement

Until the Hamas-led terror attacks of 7 October and Israel’s full-scale military response which has devastated much of the enclave, the crossing from Israel was the main route for commercial goods into Gaza. Until now, limited humanitarian aid has only been allowed to pass through the Rafah crossing with Egypt, which serves mainly as a… Continue reading Gaza: UN welcomes Kerem Shalom border crossing announcement

South Sudan: No basis for free and fair 2024 elections, warns Haysom

14 December 2023Peace and Security South Sudan is in no position to hold free, fair, or secure elections slated for December next year, the head of the UN Mission in the country (UNMISS) said on Thursday, stressing that there’s still time to catch up. Briefing ambassadors at the UN Security Council, Nicholas Haysom outlined key… Continue reading South Sudan: No basis for free and fair 2024 elections, warns Haysom

‘Desperate, hungry, terrified’: Gazans stopping aid trucks in search of food

14 December 2023Peace and Security Some Gazans are so desperate for food that they are now stopping aid trucks and immediately eating what they find, the head of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees warned on Thursday. Briefing journalists in Geneva uon his return from Rafah governorate, Philippe Lazzarini, Commissioner-General of UNRWA, explained that people… Continue reading ‘Desperate, hungry, terrified’: Gazans stopping aid trucks in search of food

Gaza flooding latest disaster to hit desperate Palestinians

14 December 2023Peace and Security Heavy rains created new misery in Gaza as UN humanitarians repeated deep concerns on Thursday over the deteriorating health situation in the Strip, amid ongoing Israeli bombardment and fighting with Palestinian armed groups. UN humanitarian affairs coordination office OCHA said that many areas in the enclave have been flooded, “worsening… Continue reading Gaza flooding latest disaster to hit desperate Palestinians

Explainer: How Darfur became a ‘humanitarian calamity and catastrophic human rights crisis’

Close to nine million people need humanitarian assistance and reports suggest that some 4000 people have been targeted and killed because of their ethnicity. There are now concerns that Darfur is returning to the years of brutal fighting and increasing atrocities last witnessed two decades ago that left some 300,000 people dead and millions of… Continue reading Explainer: How Darfur became a ‘humanitarian calamity and catastrophic human rights crisis’

Stories from the UN Archive: Kissing trees and protecting the natural world

Global perspective Human stories Famed primatologist and environmental activist, Jane Goodall kisses a tree just planted by Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Mrs. Annan, in Soweto, South Africa in 2002. (file) 14 December 2023Peace and Security A pioneer in the study of chimpanzees and a vocal environmental activist, Jane Goodall became a UN Messenger of Peace in… Continue reading Stories from the UN Archive: Kissing trees and protecting the natural world

World News in Brief: Kyiv under attack, Sudan peace talks, progress on hunger in Europe

That’s according to UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric, briefing reporters in New York who said critical infrastructure in at least four of the capital’s 10 districts have been damaged, including homes, a hospital and a kindergarten. “Water and electricity systems were also hit, but authorities managed to quickly restore these vital supplies”, he added, quoting UN humanitarians… Continue reading World News in Brief: Kyiv under attack, Sudan peace talks, progress on hunger in Europe

Gaza ceasefire ‘in everybody’s interest’: UN humanitarian coordinator

Lynn Hastings stressed that the intensifying hostilities have pushed almost half of the population of the Strip, or about a million people, into Rafah in the south, compounding the dire health and hunger crisis.   “The reason why Gaza is not safe is not just because of the airstrikes but also because of these conditions created by… Continue reading Gaza ceasefire ‘in everybody’s interest’: UN humanitarian coordinator

COP28 ends with call to ‘transition away’ from fossil fuels; UN’s Guterres says the industry will phase out ‘whether they like it or not’

13 December 2023Climate and Environment With an unprecedented reference to fossil fuels, the UN climate conference in Dubai, COP28, in its final document called on countries to work towards “transitioning away from fossil fuels in energy systems” but fell short of making the much-anticipated call for a “phaseout”. Reacting to the adoption of the outcome… Continue reading COP28 ends with call to ‘transition away’ from fossil fuels; UN’s Guterres says the industry will phase out ‘whether they like it or not’

INTERVIEW: ‘Climate of division’ creating more challenging environment for UN peacekeeping

The 10-year-old mission in Mali, MINUSMA is currently winding down ahead of its end of December deadline to leave. In his speech to the UN General Assembly in September this year, Félix-Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombohe, President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, called for the UN peacekeeping mission, MONUSCO, to begin its withdrawal from the… Continue reading INTERVIEW: ‘Climate of division’ creating more challenging environment for UN peacekeeping

UPDATING LIVE: UN General Assembly resumes emergency session on Gaza crisis

The Emergency Special Session of the General Assembly is scheduled to start at 3 PM (New York time). 1:40 PM So far there are 21 co-sponsors of the resolution and two amendments tabled. Some 79 speakers are scheduled to address the Assembly so far and the session is expected to continue beyond this evening. The… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: UN General Assembly resumes emergency session on Gaza crisis

‘Humanitarian disaster zone’: Gaza hospital capacity decimated – WHO

Briefing reporters from Gaza, Dr. Richard Peeperkorn, WHO’s representative in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, described corridors overflowing with trauma patients at Al-Ahli Hospital in Gaza City, where doctors treat people on the floor and fuel, oxygen, food and water are scarce. In just 66 days of fighting, the Strip has been transformed from a “reasonably… Continue reading ‘Humanitarian disaster zone’: Gaza hospital capacity decimated – WHO

DR Congo: Elections looming, amid worsening insecurity

Briefing ambassadors at the UN Security Council, Bintou Keita, Special Representative of the Secretary-General noted steady progress in the electoral process despite significant logistical, financial, and security challenges.  However, the resurgence of the crises related to the M23 group in the east, and new pockets of insecurity in the Greater Katanga region, Mai-Ndombe and Tshopo… Continue reading DR Congo: Elections looming, amid worsening insecurity

UN launches $46 billion appeal to respond to worsening crises in 2024

Launching the Global Humanitarian Overview, Martin Griffiths, UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, praised the heroic efforts of humanitarians but emphasized that international support is falling far short of the escalating needs.  “We thank all donors for their contributions, which amount to $20 billion so far this year – but that is just a third of what was… Continue reading UN launches $46 billion appeal to respond to worsening crises in 2024

Gaza humanitarian crisis deepens as fighting rages on across the Strip

Speaking in Doha at the launch of the Global Humanitarian Overview, Mr. Griffiths said that the situation was “getting worse”, while efforts to secure “moments of peace” remained of the “greatest importance”.   According to the latest update on the emergency from UN relief coordination office (OCHA), tens of thousands of people “in desperate need of food, water, shelter,… Continue reading Gaza humanitarian crisis deepens as fighting rages on across the Strip

Stop ‘kicking the can down the road,’ UN chief urges COP28 deal on phaseout of fossil fuels

As COP28 entered its final 48 hours, the UN chief delivered a clear message to government negotiators: “We must conclude the conference with an ambitious outcome that demonstrates decisive action and a credible plan to keep 1.5-degree goal alive, protecting those on the frontlines of the climate crisis.”  ‘The clock is ticking’ Negotiators are engaged… Continue reading Stop ‘kicking the can down the road,’ UN chief urges COP28 deal on phaseout of fossil fuels

Gaza: WHO adopts resolution on access for lifesaving aid

This is the first time since 7 October that a resolution on this conflict has been adopted by consensus within the UN system, the UN health agency noted. It underscores the importance of health as a universal priority, in all circumstances, and the role of healthcare and humanitarianism in building bridges to peace, even in… Continue reading Gaza: WHO adopts resolution on access for lifesaving aid

COP28: The UN’s net-zero food plan to save the 1.5-degree goal, combat climate ‘doomisim’

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has identified 10 priority areas – such as livestock, soil and water, crops, diets and fisheries – where following the roadmap can help push the world closer to achieving ‘Zero Hunger’, the second of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)  The aim: to transform agrifood systems – which… Continue reading COP28: The UN’s net-zero food plan to save the 1.5-degree goal, combat climate ‘doomisim’

‘I will not give up’ on push for Gaza humanitarian ceasefire: Guterres

“The preeminent forum for the peaceful resolution of international disputes is paralysed by geostrategic divisions”, António Guterres told the Doha Forum taking place in Qatar, following Friday’s meeting in New York during which the United States vetoed a resolution demanding that Israel and Palestinian militants end the intense fighting across the enclave which erupted on… Continue reading ‘I will not give up’ on push for Gaza humanitarian ceasefire: Guterres

World News in Brief: Nearly a million children displaced in Gaza, Guatemala ‘coup’ concerns, ‘enduring menace’ of genocide

Women and children are bearing the brunt in terms of deaths and injuries as Israeli troops battle Palestinian militants across the enclave, with nowhere safe to go, and aid distribution stymied by war, insufficient access and supplies crossing into the Strip. Adele Khodr, UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa, said in… Continue reading World News in Brief: Nearly a million children displaced in Gaza, Guatemala ‘coup’ concerns, ‘enduring menace’ of genocide

COP28: UN says staggering $7 trillion spent every year on investments that fuel climate change

The report from the UN’s environmental wing, UNEP, also revealed that despite decades of calls for ending finance flows towards sectors that harm some of humanity’s most valuable assets, those investments currently account for a whopping 7 percent of global GDP. Saturday’s report launch comes as negotiations on the conference’s outcome text are shifting into… Continue reading COP28: UN says staggering $7 trillion spent every year on investments that fuel climate change

Fighting engulfs over two-thirds of Myanmar, fuelling humanitarian needs

8 December 2023Peace and Security Over half a million people have been displaced in Myanmar amid a surge in fighting between the military and armed groups that stated in late October and has spread to over two-thirds of the country, the UN humanitarian affairs office reported on Friday. Among those fighting the military are a… Continue reading Fighting engulfs over two-thirds of Myanmar, fuelling humanitarian needs

World News in Brief: Haiti’s humanitarian crisis, disease outbreaks in Sudan, UK sentencing reform

Ulrika Richardson, the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Haiti, who is also the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, told journalists in Geneva that 5.2 million Haitians need humanitarian assistance and over 4.3 million face acute food insecurity – that’s a staggering two out of five people in a country which used to be… Continue reading World News in Brief: Haiti’s humanitarian crisis, disease outbreaks in Sudan, UK sentencing reform

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to meet on Gaza in wake of UN chief’s Article 99 letter

8 December 2023Peace and Security The UN Security Council is set to meet this morning at 10 AM New York time to discuss the catastrophic situation in Gaza. This follows Wednesday’s urgent letter by Secretary-General António Guterres – one of the most powerful tools at his disposal – urging the body to help end carnage… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to meet on Gaza in wake of UN chief’s Article 99 letter

Stories of courage and dedication: Humanitarians on Gaza’s front line

Mouhammed, the director of emergency and disaster management at the Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS), wakes up at 6:30 AM, catching only about three hours of sleep these days. He shares a room in the emergency operation centre in the north of Gaza Strip with 25 PRCS volunteers. Since 7 October, intensified hostilities in Gaza… Continue reading Stories of courage and dedication: Humanitarians on Gaza’s front line

Our voices and needs must be put first in climate talks, young people tell COP28

8 December 2023Climate and Environment Young climate advocates at COP28 in Dubai on Friday said they will not sit idly by while climate change threatens their futures. They demanded that government policymakers put the needs of the world’s nearly 2 billion children first – their voices and ideas can help rescue the planet. With negotiations… Continue reading Our voices and needs must be put first in climate talks, young people tell COP28

Gaza humanitarian disaster heralds ‘breakdown’ of society

The people of Gaza are being “forced into a horrible scenario” amid a “cruel campaign” by Israel against the population of the Strip in retaliation for Hamas’ terror attacks on 7 October, UN health agency WHO spokesperson Christian Lindmeier said.   “The situation in Gaza is beyond belief” he stressed, insisting that the enclave “cannot afford… Continue reading Gaza humanitarian disaster heralds ‘breakdown’ of society

COP28 in Dubai enters final week, negotiations ahead on emissions cuts, fossil fuels

7 December 2023Climate and Environment After a break, COP28 continues its work on Friday, also the day talks on an outcome text kick into high gear. Negotiators are trying to agree on how to bolster emissions-cutting targets set by the Paris Agreement and what to do about the future of fossil fuels, like oil, gas… Continue reading COP28 in Dubai enters final week, negotiations ahead on emissions cuts, fossil fuels

Global cooperation critical to combat transnational organized crime

António Guterres urged countries to strengthen cooperation, the rule of law and prevention efforts against this “vicious threat to peace, security, and sustainable development” that operates everywhere, including cyberspace – “a virtual El Dorado for criminals.” Different crimes, same outcomes Transnational organized crime is a multi-billion-dollar industry that encompasses illicit financial flows, the illicit trade… Continue reading Global cooperation critical to combat transnational organized crime

Gaza fighting further compromises aid amid near ‘apocalyptic’ conditions: UN humanitarians

7 December 2023Peace and Security Two months to the day since Hamas’ terror attacks in Israel prompted a massive Israeli military retaliation in Gaza, the situation in the war-torn enclave is becoming “apocalyptic” with hostilities making meaningful humanitarian efforts “nearly impossible”, UN humanitarians warned on Thursday. In a joint statement 27 aid organisations including UN… Continue reading Gaza fighting further compromises aid amid near ‘apocalyptic’ conditions: UN humanitarians

Countries uphold commitment to UN Peacekeeping at 2023 Ministerial in Ghana

The 2023 United Nations Peacekeeping Ministerial also saw new pledges, including of personnel and training, to meet current and future challenges and needs. Peacekeepers serve in the world’s most volatile environments and the threats they face are greater than ever, with rising geopolitical tensions, more complex conflict, and the weaponization of digital tools against them… Continue reading Countries uphold commitment to UN Peacekeeping at 2023 Ministerial in Ghana

Ukraine: Lasting toll of war, ‘beyond measure’, Security Council hears

Briefing ambassadors at the Security Council, Miroslav Jenča, Assistant Secretary-General for Europe, said that like the previous year, the year 2023 has been devastating for the people of Ukraine. The UN human rights office (OHCHR) has verified 10,065 civilians killed and a further 18,679 injured since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine began in February 2022.… Continue reading Ukraine: Lasting toll of war, ‘beyond measure’, Security Council hears

Guterres urges Security Council to act over Israel-Palestine crisis as threat to international peace and security

In a letter to the Council, Mr. Guterres invoked Article 99, contained in Chapter XV of the Charter. This says that the UN chief “may bring to attention of the Security Council any matter which in his opinion, may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security.” In a statement to journalists along with the… Continue reading Guterres urges Security Council to act over Israel-Palestine crisis as threat to international peace and security

UN’s Türk urges probe into alleged sexual violence during Hamas terror attacks

The High Commissioner also rejected allegations of double standards regarding the UN’s position on the crisis in Gaza, noting that he had been made aware of allegations of sexual violence during the Hamas attack on communities in southern Israel.  It was “painfully clear” that the “atrocious” attacks should be fully investigated, independently “because that is… Continue reading UN’s Türk urges probe into alleged sexual violence during Hamas terror attacks

COP28 is about action, not politics, ‘posturing or point scoring,’ says UN climate chief

6 December 2023Climate and Environment UN climate chief Simon Stiell said on Wednesday that COP28 delegates are not in Dubai to “score points” and play at “lowest-denominator politics”; they must take ambitious action on curbing global warming and ending the climate crisis. Mr. Stiell’s strong message to government negotiators comes as the latest UN climate… Continue reading COP28 is about action, not politics, ‘posturing or point scoring,’ says UN climate chief

Renewable energy boosts safety of UN peacekeepers

Global perspective Human stories Peacekeepers serving with the Indian military contingent of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) during a “stand to” drill in Pibor, Jonglei State (file). 5 December 2023Climate and Environment The transition to renewable energy at UN peacekeeping missions helps to ensure the safety and security of uniformed personnel serving in… Continue reading Renewable energy boosts safety of UN peacekeepers

COP28: Over 60 countries pledge to slash cooling emissions amid rising temperatures

5 December 2023Climate and Environment With rising temperatures leading to demand for more air conditioners and other cooling equipment, a new UN report launched Tuesday at COP28 climate talks in Dubai lays out a pathway to cut emissions across the cooling sector worldwide.  Over 60 countries signed up to a so called ‘cooling pledge’ with… Continue reading COP28: Over 60 countries pledge to slash cooling emissions amid rising temperatures

Desperation intensifies in Gaza amid uncertainty of ‘safe zones’

Speaking from the southern city of Rafah, Dr. Rick Peeperkorn, World Health Organization (WHO) Representative on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, described further bloodshed after the resumption of Israeli bombing last Friday. “The situation is getting worse by the hour,” Dr. Peeperkorn told journalists in Geneva via video link. “I mean…there’s intensified bombing going on all… Continue reading Desperation intensifies in Gaza amid uncertainty of ‘safe zones’

COP28: Tuesday’s climate action in Dubai

5 December 2023Climate and Environment The UN climate conference will continue its work on Tuesday focusing on issues that include scaling up financing for the Paris Agreement, slashing emissions in the cooling sector, ensuring a climate resilient energy sector and a dialogue with indigenous peoples. Will COP28 go down in history as a turning point… Continue reading COP28: Tuesday’s climate action in Dubai

UN says climate change surged alarmingly over the past decade as COP28 pushes for global emissions cuts

Marked by record breaking land and ocean temperatures, the decade between 2011-2020 saw continued rising concentrations of greenhouse gasses that “turbo charged” dramatic glacier loss and sea-level rise, according to a new report from the UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO).  The report comes as the latest annual UN climate conference, COP28, reaches its midway point… Continue reading UN says climate change surged alarmingly over the past decade as COP28 pushes for global emissions cuts

COP28: Women and climate advocates driving forward change together

This year’s UN climate conference, underway in the United Arab Emirates’ largest city, Dubai, opened its second full week hearing a diverse cross-section of women leaders and activists raise their voices to call for ending existing gender gaps and mitigating the worsening impacts of climate change on women and girls. Prevailing gender norms, existing inequalities… Continue reading COP28: Women and climate advocates driving forward change together

World News in Brief: Somalia floods, Sudan cholera update, genocide prevention

Rising waters caused by torrential downpours have affected more than 2.4 million in the east African nation, while UN aid teams are increasingly concerned about the spread of waterborne diseases, said aid coordination office, OCHA.  Suspected cases of cholera have already been reported and humanitarians have highlighted how much of a threat this poses to… Continue reading World News in Brief: Somalia floods, Sudan cholera update, genocide prevention

UN chief calls on Israel to ‘spare civilians from more suffering’ in Gaza

Mr. Guterres is extremely alarmed by the resumption of hostilities between Israel and Hamas this past Friday, including rocket fire towards Israel from Gaza and Israel’s renewed ground operations and intensified airstrikes, increasingly in the south of the enclave. “The UN continues to appeal to Israeli Forces to avoid further action that would exacerbate the already catastrophic humanitarian situation in Gaza… Continue reading UN chief calls on Israel to ‘spare civilians from more suffering’ in Gaza

Ghana meeting seeks to boost political support to strengthen UN Peacekeeping

They are taking part in the 2023 UN Peacekeeping Ministerial, which opens in the capital, Accra, on Tuesday. The two-day meeting aims to secure vital political support and concrete commitments to strengthen UN Peacekeeping efforts to meet current and future challenges and needs, in line with ongoing reform under the Action for Peacekeeping (A4P) framework… Continue reading Ghana meeting seeks to boost political support to strengthen UN Peacekeeping

Gaza: Aid access to north now entirely blocked amid escalating bombing raids in south

The latest update from the UN aid coordination office, OCHA, confirmed rising casualties and devastation amid “heavy Israeli bombardment from air, land and sea”. “From the afternoon of (Saturday) 2 December to the afternoon of (Sunday) 3 December, at least 316 people were killed and at least another 664 injured in Gaza,” OCHA’s situation update… Continue reading Gaza: Aid access to north now entirely blocked amid escalating bombing raids in south

COP28: Bring the vulnerable to ‘front of the line’ for climate funding

Among them is young Senegalese singer and rapper Oumy Gueye, who goes by OMG and was triggered to embrace climate action when her grandparents’ home in Bargny east of the Senegalese capital Dakar was destroyed by rising seas.  She has been collaborating with UN humanitarian affairs coordination office OCHA to advocate for humanitarian causes in the Sahel… Continue reading COP28: Bring the vulnerable to ‘front of the line’ for climate funding

COP28: The climate crisis is also a health crisis

Our planet has logged higher mean temperatures each year, with 2023 set to be the hottest on record. Ice sheets are melting and an unprecedented rate. Wildfires have made the air hazardous in some regions, while in other floods regularly threaten to contaminate drinking water. Against this backdrop, more and more people are being affected… Continue reading COP28: The climate crisis is also a health crisis

Gaza: UN rights chief appeals for end to violence and a return to dialogue

“Silence the guns and return to dialogue – the suffering inflicted on civilians is too much to bear. More violence is not the answer. It will bring neither peace nor security,” Volker Türk said in a statement, voicing deep concern that negotiations towards a continuation of last week’s pause had reportedly stalled. Fighting resumed on… Continue reading Gaza: UN rights chief appeals for end to violence and a return to dialogue

COP28: Methane pledge by the ‘giants behind the climate crisis’ falls short, says Guterres

As the fourth day of this year’s UN climate conference got under way, the UN chief stated: “The fossil fuel industry is finally starting to wake up, but the promises made clearly fall short of what is required.” Reacting to the pledge announced on Saturday by several major oil and gas companies to reduce methane… Continue reading COP28: Methane pledge by the ‘giants behind the climate crisis’ falls short, says Guterres

Tackling health impacts of climate change and scaling up digital climate action in the spotlight at COP28

Ahead of the first ever ‘Health Day’ at a UN climate conference, delegates signed onto a new declaration on climate and health and separately considered the role of digital technology can play in climate action.  The UN World Health Organization (WHO) welcomed the new declaration, which aims to help accelerate actions to protect people from… Continue reading Tackling health impacts of climate change and scaling up digital climate action in the spotlight at COP28

World News in Brief: Engagement with Sudan, Red Sea vessel attacks, SDGs disabilities promise

On Friday, the Security Council adopted a resolution to close the UN Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS) following a request last month from the authorities. UNITAMS was established in June 2020 to provide support to Sudan for an initial 12-month period during its transition to democratic rule following the overthrow of President Omar… Continue reading World News in Brief: Engagement with Sudan, Red Sea vessel attacks, SDGs disabilities promise

COP28: UN chief previews panel on management of minerals essential for green energy transition

The UN chief made this announcement in an address to a summit of developing country leaders taking place at the latest UN climate conference, COP28, now under way in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Mr. Guterres, who has been a strong proponent of moving away from fossil fuels, told leaders of the Group of 77 Developing… Continue reading COP28: UN chief previews panel on management of minerals essential for green energy transition

Security Council agrees to terminate UN mission in Sudan

Sudan’s military Government, whose forces have been battling the RSF militia for control of the country since April, has said that the UN mission was failing to meet expectations. The end of the UN Integrated Transitional Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS) comes against the backdrop of the continuing war raging between rival militaries that has… Continue reading Security Council agrees to terminate UN mission in Sudan

Unprecedented drought emergency demands urgent action

The Global Drought Snapshot report, released by the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) on Friday, coinciding with COP 28, paint a grim picture of the scale of lives and livelihoods lost to droughts. Ibrahim Thiaw, UNCCD Executive Secretary, emphasized the urgency of the situation. “Unlike other disasters that attract media attention, droughts happen silently,… Continue reading Unprecedented drought emergency demands urgent action

Global agrifood systems are the climate solution, new FAO report highlights 

1 December 2023Climate and Environment Agrifood systems and the communities that support and depend on them are on the front lines of loss and damage linked to climate change, a new report released on Friday by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has revealed. The current climate crisis is affecting the world’s capacity to produce sufficient… Continue reading Global agrifood systems are the climate solution, new FAO report highlights 

Shock and terror in Gaza as bombardment of shattered enclave resumes

The sound of shells exploding shortly after 7am Gaza time was clearly audible at Nasser hospital in the south, where terrified and traumatised youngsters immediately reacted by clinging to their mothers in fright, said James Elder from the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF). “The bombs started just a few seconds after the ceasefire (ended),” Mr. Elder… Continue reading Shock and terror in Gaza as bombardment of shattered enclave resumes

COP28: As ‘humanity’s fate hangs in the balance’, UN chief calls for urgent action to prevent planetary crash

1 December 2023Climate and Environment Earth’s vital signs are failing and to prevent planetary crash and burn, “we need…cooperation and political will”, United Nations Secretary General António Guterres said on Friday, challenging world leaders gathered in Dubai for COP28 to show real global climate leadership. The UN chief delivered his impassioned appeal at the high-level… Continue reading COP28: As ‘humanity’s fate hangs in the balance’, UN chief calls for urgent action to prevent planetary crash

Needs rise as flooding spreads in Somalia

Global perspective Human stories File photo from May 2023 when Beledweyne town was flooded after the Shabelle River burst its banks. 30 November 2023Climate and Environment Deadly torrential rains and floods have affected more than two million people in several areas of Somalia, with over 100 killed and 750,000 displaced from their homes, the authorities… Continue reading Needs rise as flooding spreads in Somalia

Civil society an ‘unwavering force’ for peace: UN official

30 November 2023Peace and Security Civil society organizations are on the “frontlines” of peacebuilding, a senior UN official said on Thursday, as the Organization convened the inaugural dialogue with grassroots organizations aimed at building and nurturing peace initiatives on the ground. Elizabeth Spehar, UN Assistant-Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support, emphasized the importance of civil society. “Civil… Continue reading Civil society an ‘unwavering force’ for peace: UN official

Climate change risks upending global fight against malaria

Releasing its 2023 World Malaria Report as nations gather at the UN climate change conference, COP28, the health agency warned that despite expanding access to malaria prevention, more people are getting sick with the disease. WHO documented 249 million cases in 2022, an increase of two million from 2021 and exceeding the pre-pandemic level of… Continue reading Climate change risks upending global fight against malaria

World News in Brief: New relief window in Gaza, sexual violence in Sudan, new action against chemical weapons

The latest update from UN aid coordination office OCHA indicated that two hospitals in Gaza City, Al Ahli and As Sahaba, had received a total of 10,500 litres of fuel, which is enough to operate their generators for about seven days. But humanitarians have warned that despite the pause in fighting, much more aid is… Continue reading World News in Brief: New relief window in Gaza, sexual violence in Sudan, new action against chemical weapons

COP28 gets underway in Dubai with call for ‘terminal decline’ of the fossil fuel era

30 November 2023Climate and Environment The latest round of UN-facilitated climate talks opened on Thursday in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, with a warning that the world is taking “baby steps” in the face of a terrifying planetary crisis that requires bold action now. “We are taking baby steps and stepping far too slowly to work… Continue reading COP28 gets underway in Dubai with call for ‘terminal decline’ of the fossil fuel era

Science points to ‘climate collapse’ as UN chief calls COP28 to action

While 2023 is not yet over, a provisional report from the UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO) confirmed that it is set to be the warmest on record, with global temperatures rising 1.4 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. Mr. Guterres said that the race is on to keep alive the 1.5-degree limit agreed by world leaders… Continue reading Science points to ‘climate collapse’ as UN chief calls COP28 to action

Impact of ‘failed promises’ on climate, evident in Antarctica: A UN Resident Coordinator blog

Maria José Torres Macho travelled to Antarctica with the UN chief, Antonio Guterres, ahead of the global climate conference, COP28, which is getting underway in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates: “The sleeping continent hides under its beauty, its undeniable role as a key climate regulator for the planet. While we enjoyed the majestic and… Continue reading Impact of ‘failed promises’ on climate, evident in Antarctica: A UN Resident Coordinator blog

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council due to meet on Israel-Palestine crisis

29 November 2023Peace and Security The UN Security Council is due to meet once again on Wednesday morning in New York on the Middle East crisis. This will be the first open meeting since the 15-member body passed a resolution in mid-November calling for the immediate release of hostages held by Hamas and extended humanitarian corridors… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council due to meet on Israel-Palestine crisis

Israel-Palestine crisis: Gaza City a ‘ghost town’, reports UN aid agency

29 November 2023Peace and Security Amid hopes of a deal to extend the pause in fighting in Gaza between Israel and Hamas on Wednesday, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) reported that humanitarian assistance had reached its shelters in northern Gaza for first time since war erupted last month. “As we drove through Gaza… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: Gaza City a ‘ghost town’, reports UN aid agency

Syria: ‘A dozen different powder kegs’

Najat Rochdi, UN Deputy Special Envoy for Syria, told ambassadors at the Security Council that Israeli airstrikes hit Damascus airport this weekend, following several other airstrikes and artillery fire on locations across the country, reportedly killing one civilian airport worker. She added that the airstrikes coincided with reports of rocket and missile launches from southern… Continue reading Syria: ‘A dozen different powder kegs’

UN and African Union sign new human rights agreement

At the meeting, UN Secretary-General António Guterres and AU Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat signed a framework agreement on human rights, which follows a previous accord on peace and security, and another on development.  Speaking afterwards to reporters, they underscored the need to reform the global financial architecture to reflect current realities. “What Africa needs… Continue reading UN and African Union sign new human rights agreement

Francis calls for longer-term humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza

Addressing the Assembly’s annual debate on the Question of Palestine, Dennis Francis urged UN Member States to find common ground, engage with each other in good faith, and increase collective resolve to end the crisis. “The longer the fear, distrust, appetite for revenge, hatred, and anxiety fester and deepen further – the more lethal the… Continue reading Francis calls for longer-term humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza

Haiti: Gangs move into rural areas as Türk says new force ‘must be deployed’

The report, published on Tuesday by the UN human rights office (OHCHR) and the UN political mission in Haiti (BINUH), calls for the urgent deployment of the multinational security support mission authorized by the UN Security Council in October. But alongside that, greater efforts will need to be made to strengthen the institutions of the… Continue reading Haiti: Gangs move into rural areas as Türk says new force ‘must be deployed’

Explainer: What’s COP28 and why is it important?

Here’s what you need to know: The last COP was held in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, in November 2022. What is a ‘COP’? UN climate conferences are government-level large-scale annual gatherings focused on climate action. They are also referred to as COPs – Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The UNFCCC… Continue reading Explainer: What’s COP28 and why is it important?

Gaza doctors ‘terrified’ of deadly disease outbreak as aid teams race to deliver

28 November 2023Humanitarian Aid As the pause in fighting in Gaza appeared to enter a fifth day on Tuesday, UN humanitarians warned that aid deliveries needed to multiply immediately to save the lives of the injured and stem the risk of a deadly disease outbreak that has left doctors “terrified”. Priorities include transporting fuel to… Continue reading Gaza doctors ‘terrified’ of deadly disease outbreak as aid teams race to deliver

First Person: Trauma, stress and sadness take root in Gaza

Mr. Elder met with children and their families in Gaza, during the humanitarian pause in fighting, which was called after weeks of intense shelling and bombardment that killed and injured thousands and displaced 1.7 million Palestinians. The conflict erupted on 7 October, when Hamas attacked Israel, killed over 1,200 people and captured more than 200 hostages.… Continue reading First Person: Trauma, stress and sadness take root in Gaza

DPR Korea: Military satellites, ‘serious risk’ to civil aviation and shipping

27 November 2023Peace and Security The recent launch of a reconnaissance satellite by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), presents a ‘serious risk’ to international civil aviation and shipping, the Security Council heard on Monday.  The UN’s Assistant Secretary-General for the Middle East, Asia and the Pacific, Mohamed Khaled Khiari, told ambassadors the satellite had been loaded onto… Continue reading DPR Korea: Military satellites, ‘serious risk’ to civil aviation and shipping

Hopes for a sustainable planet must not ‘melt away’: Guterres

27 November 2023Climate and Environment World leaders at this week’s climate conference, COP28, must break the deadly cycle of global warming before a “deadly tipping point” is reached, said the UN chief on Monday. UN Secretary-General António Guterres was briefing reporters in New York after seeing for himself over the weekend the “profoundly shocking” speed at… Continue reading Hopes for a sustainable planet must not ‘melt away’: Guterres

World News in Brief: Delivering on health at COP28, aid for north Darfur, food standards watchdog turns 60

That’s the message from UN health agency WHO, which said on Monday that negotiators at the upcoming meeting must recognize their responsibility “for the health of populations worldwide”. “Leaders must deliver in Dubai, providing the strong health outcomes their peoples expect and their economies urgently need,” said WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.  According to the… Continue reading World News in Brief: Delivering on health at COP28, aid for north Darfur, food standards watchdog turns 60

Gaza: Vital aid reaches shattered north as halt to fighting enters fourth day

And as the UN emergency relief coordination office, OCHA, reported that people in the south were queuing for kilometres to obtain cooking gas and resorting to burning window frames and doors for cooking, it added that the four-day humanitarian pause agreed upon by Israel and Hamas has been “largely maintained”. Under the agreement, Hamas released 17… Continue reading Gaza: Vital aid reaches shattered north as halt to fighting enters fourth day

Hitching a ride to a better future: Sustainable Transport Day

26 November 2023Climate and Environment There is an urgent need for a transformative shift towards more sustainable transport the UN chief said on Sunday, emphasizing the importance of cleaner energy to combat climate change. “This first World Sustainable Transport Day reminds us that the road to a better future depends on cleaner and greener transportation systems,”… Continue reading Hitching a ride to a better future: Sustainable Transport Day

UN confirms more aid entering Gaza as humanitarian pause holds for second day

25 November 2023Humanitarian Aid Sixty-one trucks hauled aid to northern Gaza on Saturday – the largest number since 7 October, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. The freight included food, water and emergency medical supplies. Eleven ambulances, 3 coaches and a flatbed were delivered to Al Shifa hospital to be used… Continue reading UN confirms more aid entering Gaza as humanitarian pause holds for second day

From the Field: A destroyed Ukrainian village rebuilds

24 November 2023Humanitarian Aid On a sunny day, Ivan, a burly retired welder in his fifties, stood in front of his ruined house in Posad-Pokrovske, in the Kherson region of Ukraine. A landmine warning sign behind a fence of a destroyed house in Posad-Pokrovske in the Kherson region of Ukraine. “Blackberries grew in front of… Continue reading From the Field: A destroyed Ukrainian village rebuilds

In visit to Antarctica, Guterres appeals for action to end ‘climate anarchy’

24 November 2023Climate and Environment Antarctica has been called the sleeping giant, but it is now being awoken by climate chaos, the UN Secretary-General has warned. António Guterres is in Antarctica this week, where he saw first-hand how climate change is impacting the world’s southernmost continent, which is mostly covered in ice. The heat is… Continue reading In visit to Antarctica, Guterres appeals for action to end ‘climate anarchy’

Clashes in eastern DR Congo displace 450,000 in six weeks

24 November 2023Humanitarian Aid Humanitarians are urgently scaling up aid in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) where an escalating crisis is again unfolding, the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, and the UN Children’s Fund, UNICEF, said on Friday. Violent clashes between non-state armed groups and government forces have displaced more than 450,000 people… Continue reading Clashes in eastern DR Congo displace 450,000 in six weeks

Gaza: start of truce feeds hopes for respite, access to people in need: UN humanitarians

They reiterated calls for access to all parts of the war-shattered enclave where the death toll inched towards 15,000 and many displaced people were sleeping in the streets. UN humanitarian affairs coordination office (OCHA) spokesperson Jens Laerke told reporters in Geneva that the hope regarding the agreement between Israel and Hamas announced earlier this week… Continue reading Gaza: start of truce feeds hopes for respite, access to people in need: UN humanitarians

With Gaza truce on horizon, UN relief teams stand ready to ramp up aid

According to media reports, ongoing negotiations over the Israel-Hamas agreement on a four-day humanitarian pause and the freeing of hostages held by the Palestinian armed group since its 7 October terror attacks indicated that the deal’s entry into force was believed to be unlikely before Friday. Amid rising hunger, UN World Food Programme (WFP) chief… Continue reading With Gaza truce on horizon, UN relief teams stand ready to ramp up aid

UN agency heads unite in urgent plea for women and children in Gaza

Briefing the Security Council, Sima Bahous, Catherine Russell and Natalia Kanem – heads of UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and UN Population Fund (UNFPA), respectively – also welcomed the agreement on the release of some of the hostages taken during the Hamas attack on… Continue reading UN agency heads unite in urgent plea for women and children in Gaza

Guterres urges G20 to lead the way in financial and climate justice

22 November 2023SDGs At a time when people are hurting and the planet is burning, the world’s advanced economies can take the lead in ensuring financial, structural and climate justice, the UN Secretary-General said in remarks to the virtual G20 Summit convened by India on Wednesday.  António Guterres said the world, particularly developing countries, is… Continue reading Guterres urges G20 to lead the way in financial and climate justice

World News in Brief: DPR Korea missile launch, malaria vaccines in Cameroon, solidarity with Haiti

The country, known colloquially as North Korea, claimed to have carried out a third attempt to launch a ballistic missile on Tuesday, according to media reports. Comply with obligations Any such launch is contrary to relevant Security Council resolutions, Mr. Guterres said in a statement issued later that day by his deputy spokesman Farhan Haq.… Continue reading World News in Brief: DPR Korea missile launch, malaria vaccines in Cameroon, solidarity with Haiti

Gaza: UN welcomes deal for pause in fighting, hostage-release pact

“This is an important step in the right direction, but much more needs to be done,” Mr. Guterres said via a statement from his spokesperson Farhan Haq.   The top UN official leading efforts to secure a lasting peace in the Middle East, Tor Wennesland, echoed those comments and also welcomed the announced 96-hour “humanitarian… Continue reading Gaza: UN welcomes deal for pause in fighting, hostage-release pact

Ukraine: Civilian casualties mount, as war enters second winter

The Monitoring Mission stated that the casualty figure represents deaths verified according to its methodology, cautioning that the actual figure may be significantly higher given the challenges and time required for verification. “Ten thousand civilian deaths is a grim milestone for Ukraine,” said Danielle Bell, head of the Monitoring Mission, adding that the war, now… Continue reading Ukraine: Civilian casualties mount, as war enters second winter

General Assembly resolution upholds the Olympic Truce

Global perspective Human stories The United Nations and the Olympic flags raised at UN Headquarters. (file) 21 November 2023Peace and Security Ahead of the Summer Olympics in Paris next year, the UN General Assembly has urged countries to maintain the ancient Greek tradition of observing peace worldwide before, during and after the Games. This follows… Continue reading General Assembly resolution upholds the Olympic Truce

UN agencies urge action to safeguard maternal, child health amidst climate crisis

21 November 2023Health UN agencies on Tuesday issued an urgent call for action, emphasizing the severe health risks faced by pregnant women, babies and children due to worsening climate catastrophes. In Protecting maternal, newborn and child health from the impacts of climate change, the World Health Organization (WHO), UN Population Fund (UNFPA), and UN Children’s… Continue reading UN agencies urge action to safeguard maternal, child health amidst climate crisis

Secure peace with inclusive, sustainable development, UN chief says

Addressing an open debate of the Security Council on the link, António Guterres said that while development alone cannot guarantee peace, it is an essential component. “No peace is secure without inclusive and sustainable development that leaves no one behind,” he said, drawing parallels to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable… Continue reading Secure peace with inclusive, sustainable development, UN chief says

Children’s rights in jeopardy 34 years after landmark UN treaty

Catherine Russell made the appeal in a statement to mark World Children’s Day, which commemorates the adoption of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) – the most widely ratified human rights treaty in history.  “At no time since the CRC was adopted 34 years ago have children’s rights been in greater… Continue reading Children’s rights in jeopardy 34 years after landmark UN treaty

UN urges dramatic climate action as records keep tumbling

20 November 2023Climate and Environment With global temperatures soaring and greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) reaching unprecedented levels, dramatic climate action is needed to steer the world away from runaway climate change and align it to the objectives of the Paris Agreement, a major UN report has found. The 2023 Emissions Gap Report, released on Monday… Continue reading UN urges dramatic climate action as records keep tumbling

Gazans have ‘no options’ for safety as offensive continues

20 November 2023Peace and Security In Gaza, where two UN-run schools received direct hits over the weekend amid intensified fighting, the plight of civilians continues to worsen as heavy rain falls across the enclave. A tweet by the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, UNWRA on Monday, described the situation in shelters as “unliveable”. It said… Continue reading Gazans have ‘no options’ for safety as offensive continues

‘This must stop,’ UN chief says as deaths, displacement ripple across Gaza

“This war is having a staggering and unacceptable number of civilian casualties, including women and children, every day,” UN Secretary-General António Guterres said in a statement on Sunday. “This must stop. I reiterate my call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire.” Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), said in a statement on Sunday… Continue reading ‘This must stop,’ UN chief says as deaths, displacement ripple across Gaza

Restricted fuel deliveries curtail aid efforts in Gaza amid fresh attacks on schools

Fuel restrictions are curtailing aid efforts, the UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA) said amid reports of fresh attacks on schools and other civilian infrastructure and rising needs among more than 1.5 million displaced Gazans. Fuel deliveries for aid operations have been largely prohibited since Hamas’ attack on Israel on 7 October left at least… Continue reading Restricted fuel deliveries curtail aid efforts in Gaza amid fresh attacks on schools

‘Six days of terror’ in West Darfur: Ethnically-based attacks on the rise

17 November 2023Human Rights The UN human rights office, OHCHR, has voiced alarm over reports of another ethnically motivated mass attack in the Darfur region of Sudan, amidst the ongoing conflict between the national army and a rival military known as the Rapid Support Forces (RSF).  Hundreds of ethnic Masalit civilians were reportedly killed earlier… Continue reading ‘Six days of terror’ in West Darfur: Ethnically-based attacks on the rise

UPDATING LIVE: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza could get far worse, warns UN relief chief

More than 1.5 million Gazans are displaced, 18 hospitals have shut down, and hundreds of thousands are living in fear and under continuing Israeli bombardment. “Casualties continue to mount, with the dead reportedly exceeding 11,000 people – the majority of them children and women,” said Emergency Relief Coordinator and Humanitarian Affairs chief, Martin Griffiths. “The… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Humanitarian crisis in Gaza could get far worse, warns UN relief chief

Myanmar: Intense fighting spreads to cities, as civilians seek shelter

In the fighting so far, about 70 civilians – and combatants who are out of action – have reportedly been killed and over 90 wounded, according to the UN human rights office (OHCHR). The fighting has also fuelled a fresh wave of displacement, driving over 200,000 people from their homes since 27 October. In all,… Continue reading Myanmar: Intense fighting spreads to cities, as civilians seek shelter

Gaza: ‘Endless needs’ reflect spiralling situation as hospitals shut down, WHO warns

“What we do know is that the health system is on its knees,” said Dr. Richard Peeperkorn, World Health Organization Representative in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, in the wake of Hamas militants’ terror attack on Israel on 7 October that left 1,200 dead and the heavy bombardment of the enclave by the Israeli military in response.   ‘Endless need’  Speaking from Jerusalem… Continue reading Gaza: ‘Endless needs’ reflect spiralling situation as hospitals shut down, WHO warns

Sudan: Deadly spiral of violence continues between military rivals

16 November 2023Peace and Security The war between rival militaries in Sudan, which has been raging for over seven months has further intensified in recent weeks, particularly in the volatile Darfur region, a senior UN official said on Thursday. Martha Ama Akyaa Pobee, Assistant Secretary-General for Africa, informed ambassadors on the Security Council that the… Continue reading Sudan: Deadly spiral of violence continues between military rivals

UN’s top Woman Police Officer ‘a young agent of change’

First Sergeant Renita Rismayanti received the prestigious Woman Police Officer of the Year Award during a ceremony at UN Headquarters in New York. At 27, she is the youngest recipient in the Award’s 13-year history. Working for change  Ms. Rismayanti is deployed as a crime database officer at MINUSCA, which has a mandate that includes… Continue reading UN’s top Woman Police Officer ‘a young agent of change’

World News in Brief: Ethiopia food aid resumes, ‘Stop the Lies’ campaign against big tobacco, Syria ruling, climate action – key to peace

WFP food aid in the country, which was suspended in June, will aim to reach 3.2 million people after the relaunch. ‘Working around the clock’ WFP chief Cindy McCain said that the agency’s teams and partners “have been working around the clock to get to this point.” The UN agency’s new approach will rely on… Continue reading World News in Brief: Ethiopia food aid resumes, ‘Stop the Lies’ campaign against big tobacco, Syria ruling, climate action – key to peace

Security Council reform a must, to end ‘paralysis’

Speaking at the Assembly’s annual debate assessing the UN’s premier forum for peace and security, Dennis Francis said that without structural reform, the Council’s performance and legitimacy will inevitably continue to suffer. “Violence and war continue to spread in regions across the world, while the United Nations seems paralyzed due largely to the divisions in… Continue reading Security Council reform a must, to end ‘paralysis’

Gaza: Lack of fuel threatening to shut down ‘entire’ humanitarian operation

In a wide-ranging briefing to journalists in Geneva, UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini reiterated calls for a ceasefire and addressed misinformation targeting the agency, including claims that aid is being diverted. He said he has also received reports of UN schools being used “for military purposes”. Commitment in crisis During the briefing, Mr. Lazzarini said he had received reports that Gaza was under… Continue reading Gaza: Lack of fuel threatening to shut down ‘entire’ humanitarian operation

Gaza: UN’s Türk urges ‘political path out of horror’

Speaking in Geneva, the High Commissioner for Human Rights urged Hamas commanders and Israel to seize a “political path out of this horror”.  Mr. Türk condemned the widespread targeting of civilians in the past five weeks of hostilities and urged accountability for gross rights violations. He stressed that attacks directed at “hospitals, schools, markets and… Continue reading Gaza: UN’s Türk urges ‘political path out of horror’

Explainer: How aid reaches Gaza

Barricaded for two weeks at the outset of the conflict, the Rafah crossing re-opened on 21 October following an Israel-Egyptian deal for limited entry of humanitarian aid deliveries. Still, only a trickle is getting across the border. While media reports announce fresh efforts to get aid to Gaza, like French and Italian hospital ships and… Continue reading Explainer: How aid reaches Gaza

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council due to meet again on Israel-Palestine crisis

15 November 2023Peace and Security The Security Council is poised to meet again at 3:00 PM New York time on Wednesday to attempt to find unity in its response to the worsening Israel-Palestine crisis, which began on 7 October with terror attacks by Hamas fighters, and the retaliatory siege and offensive launched against their Gaza… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council due to meet again on Israel-Palestine crisis

‘No end in sight’ to rising greenhouse gas emissions, UN weather agency warns

15 November 2023Climate and Environment Greenhouse gas emissions reached a record high in 2022 with “no end in sight to the rising trend”, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said in a report published on Wednesday.  The Greenhouse Gas Bulletin comes ahead of the UN climate change conference COP28 which opens in Dubai in two weeks.… Continue reading ‘No end in sight’ to rising greenhouse gas emissions, UN weather agency warns

Israel-Palestine crisis: UN emergency relief chief unveils 10-point plan ‘to rein in the carnage’

15 November 2023Peace and Security The UN’s top emergency relief official unveiled a 10-point plan “to rein in the carnage” in Gaza on Wednesday which focuses on a major expansion of aid into into the wartorn enclave, along with a new call for humanitarian ceasefires and the release of hostages taken during Hamas’s 7 October… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: UN emergency relief chief unveils 10-point plan ‘to rein in the carnage’

‘Close the climate ambition gap’ says UN chief ahead of COP28

14 November 2023Climate and Environment The COP28 climate conference held in Dubai later this month “must be the place to urgently close the climate ambition gap”, as emissions continue to rise and climate chaos intensifies, UN chief António Guterres insisted on Tuesday. Mr. Guterres was commenting on the latest report by UN climate change body… Continue reading ‘Close the climate ambition gap’ says UN chief ahead of COP28

Security Council: Police need greater support amid ‘many challenges’

Ambassadors met for their annual briefing with the heads of UN Police Components serving at field missions. Jean-Pierre Lacroix, Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations, opened the meeting by highlighting the importance of continuously enhancing and adapting peacekeeping to match changing conditions. Unique responses required “Many challenges to global peace, security and development today – such as,… Continue reading Security Council: Police need greater support amid ‘many challenges’

World News in Brief: Diabetes on the rise, UN prisoners in Yemen, Ukraine war fuels rise in landmine casualties

Diabetes is a chronic disease which occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin, or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. WHO said that more than 460 million people worldwide live with diabetes and millions more are at risk. The UN health agency stressed that people with the condition require… Continue reading World News in Brief: Diabetes on the rise, UN prisoners in Yemen, Ukraine war fuels rise in landmine casualties

Humanitarians step up response to deadly cholera outbreak in Sudan

14 November 2023Health Cholera vaccines are expected to arrive in Sudan this month as the country continues to face a deadly outbreak of the disease amidst the ongoing war, the UN humanitarian affairs office, OCHA, said on Tuesday.  UN agencies and partners are scaling up response to the outbreak, which was first declared in Gedaref… Continue reading Humanitarians step up response to deadly cholera outbreak in Sudan

Besieged Gaza hospital misery continues while rainfall prompts new health scare

“Rain will just add further to the suffering” of people in the Strip, WHO spokesperson Margaret Harris told reporters in Geneva, at a time when disruptions in sewage pumping and water shortages have caused a spike in waterborne diseases and bacterial infections.  The World Health Organization warned last week that since mid-October, over 33,500 cases of… Continue reading Besieged Gaza hospital misery continues while rainfall prompts new health scare

New round of plastics pollution treaty talks underway in Nairobi

13 November 2023Climate and Environment Negotiators from around the world gathered in Nairobi, Kenya, on Monday for fresh talks over a landmark international treaty to combat plastic pollution.  The urgency of this effort is underscored by the ongoing global plastic pollution crisis, where approximately 430 million tonnes of plastic are produced annually.  Around two-thirds of it… Continue reading New round of plastics pollution treaty talks underway in Nairobi

Fuel shortage could put the brakes on trucks delivering aid to Gaza

The situation is unfolding as “lives are hanging by a thread”, including those of babies in incubators at hospitals that depend on fuel for electricity, Andrea De Domenico, Head of OCHA’s office in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, told journalists in New York on Monday. “Humanitarian ceasefire, fuel supplies – all of these should be happening now. We are running out… Continue reading Fuel shortage could put the brakes on trucks delivering aid to Gaza

World News in Brief: Water crisis for children, hunger in East Africa, new Yazidi memorial

The double burden of dwindling availability – and inadequate water for drinking and sanitation services – is compounding the challenge, putting children at even greater risk. The Climate Changed Child – released ahead of the COP28 UN climate change summit later this month in Dubai – throws a spotlight on the threat facing vulnerable children. It… Continue reading World News in Brief: Water crisis for children, hunger in East Africa, new Yazidi memorial

UN honours 101 staff killed in Gaza conflict

The fallen colleagues worked for the UN agency that assists Palestine refugees, UNRWA, providing life-saving aid to Gaza’s 2.2 million people, amid constant bombardment and a complete siege of the enclave. They included school principals, teachers, doctors, engineers, guards, and support staff. Many were killed along with their family members. Minute of silence UN officials… Continue reading UN honours 101 staff killed in Gaza conflict

Indonesian peacekeeper wins UN Woman Police Officer of the year award

12 November 2023Peace and Security Police First Sergeant Renita Rismayanti of Indonesia, who serves with the UN peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), has been named this year’s winner of the prestigious Woman Police Officer of the Year Award. She will receive the honour at a special ceremony at UN Headquarters in New… Continue reading Indonesian peacekeeper wins UN Woman Police Officer of the year award

Gaza City: Babies dying in hospital amid scenes of devastation

The UN’s health agency WHO said on Sunday night that according to the Gaza health authorities, 37 premature babies at the hospital were relocated over the weekend to an operating room without their incubators, with health workers trying to heat the room. According to the latest media reports on Monday, six babies at Al-Shifa have… Continue reading Gaza City: Babies dying in hospital amid scenes of devastation

Gaza: UN agencies make plea for international action to end hospital attacks

The regional directors of the UN sexual and reproductive health agency (UNFPA), children’s agency UNICEF and health agency WHO, said they were “horrified” at latest reports which indicate many have been killed – including children – in facilities across Gaza city and other northern areas of the Strip. The Palestinian Red Crescent Society is reporting… Continue reading Gaza: UN agencies make plea for international action to end hospital attacks

Attacks on or near Gaza hospitals ‘unconscionable, reprehensible and must stop’: Relief chief

In a statement, the Israeli military denied that it had targeted Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City, which they claim is above a Hamas command post, but have acknowledged that fighting is happening “around” the facility. UN relief and humanitarian affairs chief, Martin Griffiths, tweeted that in light of “horrific reports of attacks”, there could be… Continue reading Attacks on or near Gaza hospitals ‘unconscionable, reprehensible and must stop’: Relief chief

‘Genuine prospect of Palestinian statehood is critical’, UNRWA chief tells emergency summit in Saudi Arabia

Philippe Lazzarini was addressing an emergency summit convened by the League of Arab States and Organisation of Islamic Cooperation where he called for urgent support for civilians in the Occupied Palestinian Territory on three fronts. He called on leaders at the Arab-Islamic summit to “act now to change the trajectory” of the crisis that began… Continue reading ‘Genuine prospect of Palestinian statehood is critical’, UNRWA chief tells emergency summit in Saudi Arabia

70 UN Ambassadors in Geneva urge international action on Gaza

10 November 2023Peace and Security  The international community must act now to end the bloodshed and suffering in Gaza, scores of UN Ambassadors in Geneva said in a joint call on Friday.  More than 11,000 Palestinians have been killed in just one of month of conflict, they said, citing local health authorities. Children, women and… Continue reading 70 UN Ambassadors in Geneva urge international action on Gaza

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council due to meet again on Israel-Palestine crisis

10 November 2023Peace and Security The UN Security Council is due to meet at 3pm (New York time) on Friday to discuss the ongoing Israel-Palestine crisis as negotiations continue behind the scenes to reach some consensus position over the war raging in Gaza, within the 15 member body. Join us here for live updates. 2:20… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council due to meet again on Israel-Palestine crisis

Gaza conflict could spark rise in poverty, UN agencies warn

The assessment by the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) looks at preliminary socio-economic impacts, warning that poverty could spike while Gross Domestic Product (GDP) could plummet by 8.4 per cent, which translates into a loss of $1.7 billion. Lamenting the loss of life, suffering and ongoing… Continue reading Gaza conflict could spark rise in poverty, UN agencies warn

Israel-Palestine crisis: Amid war crimes fears, UN rights chief renews calls to stop violence, free hostages 

“Water is scarce and fear is pervasive” in Gaza, Mr. Türk told journalists in Amman, recounting a conversation he had minutes earlier with a colleague in Gaza who had to flee Israeli bombardments with his family. “His children, aged nine and seven, are asking him questions he does not know how to answer: ‘Why is… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: Amid war crimes fears, UN rights chief renews calls to stop violence, free hostages 

Gaza: ‘Humanitarian pauses’ will need coordination with the UN

Global perspective Human stories Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the UN Secretary-General (file). 9 November 2023Peace and Security Any plans for short-term pauses in the fighting in Gaza must be carried out in coordination with the UN and following agreement by all sides, the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General said on Thursday during his regular press briefing… Continue reading Gaza: ‘Humanitarian pauses’ will need coordination with the UN

$20 million appeal to support Palestine labour market

The funding appeal – launched on Thursday in Geneva – will be used to implement a three-phase programme to provide immediate relief and support longer-term job and business recovery, as well as social protection. “The hostilities have resulted in – and continue to cause – both a tragic loss of human life, and an unprecedented… Continue reading $20 million appeal to support Palestine labour market

Israel-Palestine crisis: Silence the guns, UN relief chief tells Paris forum

Echoing his remarks with French President Emmanuel Macron looking on, the head of the UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA), Philippe Lazzarini, stressed the “heart-breaking” plight of children in the territory, whom he saw last week “pleading for a piece of bread and a sip of water”. Mass displacement has led to severe overcrowding in… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: Silence the guns, UN relief chief tells Paris forum

Ukraine: Near-daily attacks deepen suffering

8 November 2023Peace and Security The war in Ukraine, which has raged on for over 20 months, shows no signs of ending soon, leaving a trail of devastation and immense suffering in its wake, a senior UN official told the Security Council on Wednesday. Miroslav Jenča, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, voiced concern over… Continue reading Ukraine: Near-daily attacks deepen suffering

Mali: UN convoy concludes treacherous 350 kilometre journey

The development is the latest step in the accelerated withdrawal process of the Mission, known as MINUSMA, which is due to leave the West African country by the end of the year after a decade in operation. The 143 vehicles left Kidal on 31 October and travelled nearly 350 kilometres, transporting 848 peacekeepers from Bangladesh,… Continue reading Mali: UN convoy concludes treacherous 350 kilometre journey

At Rafah crossing, Türk says both Israel and Hamas have committed war crimes

8 November 2023Human Rights The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights reiterated the call for an urgent ceasefire between Israel and Hamas during a visit to the Rafah crossing and El Arish Hospital in Egypt on Wednesday.  Volker Türk highlighted the dichotomy at the border crossing, describing it as a “lifeline” for the 2.3 million… Continue reading At Rafah crossing, Türk says both Israel and Hamas have committed war crimes

2023 likely hottest year on record; further spike expected with El Niño

That’s the message from UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO), which said on Wednesday that for the calendar year to date, the global mean temperature is the highest ever recorded, 1.43 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, and sea ice in the Antarctic remains at record low levels. WMO expects the warming El Niño climate pattern to last… Continue reading 2023 likely hottest year on record; further spike expected with El Niño

Fossil fuel producers ‘literally doubling down’, new UNEP report warns

8 November 2023Climate and Environment Contrary to pledges to cut fossil fuel production, government policies worldwide will add up to a doubling of production in 2030, a new report from the UN environment agency (UNEP) revealed on Wednesday. “The 2023 Production Gap report is a startling indictment of runaway climate carelessness,” the UN Secretary-General António Guterres said… Continue reading Fossil fuel producers ‘literally doubling down’, new UNEP report warns

Sudan war turning ‘homes into cemeteries’: UNHCR

“The war that erupted without warning turned previously peaceful Sudanese homes into cemeteries,” said Dominique Hyde, Director of External Relations at UNHCR. She visited the country last week, and witnessed a surge in human suffering. “Away from the eyes of the world and the news headlines, the conflict in Sudan continues to rage. Across the… Continue reading Sudan war turning ‘homes into cemeteries’: UNHCR

Israel-Palestine crisis: UN humanitarians plead for ‘access, access, access’

“Every day, you think it is the worst day and then the next day is worse,” UN health agency spokesperson Christian Lindmeier said, quoting a colleague in Gaza, which remains under almost complete blockade. “Access, access, access is necessary.” 160 children killed daily The level of death and suffering is “hard to fathom”, Mr. Lindmeier… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: UN humanitarians plead for ‘access, access, access’

Gaza: ‘Unfolding catastrophe’ makes humanitarian ceasefire more urgent

“The nightmare in Gaza is more than a humanitarian crisis.  It is a crisis of humanity,” he said, speaking to journalists at UN Headquarters in New York. He also voiced ongoing grave concern over rising violence and an expansion of the conflict between Israeli forces and Hamas militants, stating that “the occupied West Bank, including… Continue reading Gaza: ‘Unfolding catastrophe’ makes humanitarian ceasefire more urgent

Sudan crisis has ‘effectively put on hold’ political dispute over Abyei

“With the conflict in Sudan, the conditions are not conducive for talks on the final status of Abyei. The progress that was made [earlier this year] unfortunately was not something that we could build upon,” Hanna Serwaa Tetteh, Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Horn of Africa, told ambassadors. “Key Sudanese and South Sudanese leaders… Continue reading Sudan crisis has ‘effectively put on hold’ political dispute over Abyei

FAO report reveals hidden costs of agrifood systems

The figure represents nearly 10 per cent of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to the 2023 edition of The State of Food and Agriculture (SOFA) – the agency’s flagship report – which covers 154 countries.  Acknowledgment and action It introduces the concept of the hidden costs and benefits of agrifood systems, offering a framework through which… Continue reading FAO report reveals hidden costs of agrifood systems

World News in Brief: Sudan and South Sudan updates, Ukraine heritage under fire in Odesa

With the civil war between rival militaries now in its 200th day, children “continue to pay the highest price for a crisis not of their making – increasingly with their own lives”, said the agency in a statement. There are more children now displaced there than anywhere in the world, with three million fleeing the… Continue reading World News in Brief: Sudan and South Sudan updates, Ukraine heritage under fire in Odesa

Israel-Palestine crisis: ‘Enough is enough’ say UN humanitarians

Among those uniting behind the message that “enough is enough”, UN relief chief Martin Griffiths renewed earlier pleas for the immediate and unconditional release of the more than 240 hostages captured by Hamas and held in Gaza since 7 October. All parties should respect their obligations under international humanitarian and human rights law, the UN… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: ‘Enough is enough’ say UN humanitarians

WFP appeals for urgent expanded access to Gaza as food supplies ‘dangerously low’

Global perspective Human stories WFP Executive Director Cindy McCain. 5 November 2023Humanitarian Aid The head of UN’s emergency food relief agency on Sunday issued an urgent appeal from the Rafah border crossing for safe, expanded humanitarian access to Gaza as critical food supplies in the ravaged enclave reach dangerously low levels. “Right now, parents in… Continue reading WFP appeals for urgent expanded access to Gaza as food supplies ‘dangerously low’

Guterres ‘horrified’ by strike on ambulance convoy in Gaza

4 November 2023Peace and Security UN Secretary-General António Guterres said he was “horrified” by a strike on an ambulance convoy outside a hospital in the Gaza Strip on Friday, reiterating his appeal for a humanitarian ceasefire. “I am horrified by the reported attack in Gaza on an ambulance convoy outside Al Shifa hospital. The images… Continue reading Guterres ‘horrified’ by strike on ambulance convoy in Gaza

Explainer: How AI helps combat climate change

The recent launch of the UN-led AI Advisory Body advanced a growing global trend to harness machine learning to find solutions to common challenges. AI is upping the data crunching game and a growing number of governments, businesses and civil society partners are working together to reap its many benefits. That includes speeding up and scaling efforts… Continue reading Explainer: How AI helps combat climate change

Sharp uptick in fighting in Myanmar, UN humanitarians report

3 November 2023Peace and Security Myanmar witnessed a sharp escalation in fighting between the military and opposition groups this week fuelling a surge in new displacements, the UN humanitarian wing has said. Clashes intensified on Sunday and continued through the week, significantly impacting northeast and southeast Myanmar and forcing over 48,000 people from their homes,… Continue reading Sharp uptick in fighting in Myanmar, UN humanitarians report

World’s diverse biospheres ‘making peace with the natural world’

3 November 2023Climate and Environment Spanning from city to savannah, and from mountaintops to mangroves, the world’s 748 biosphere reserves are being celebrated this Friday for their diversity and contribution to a green global future.  These sites promote biodiversity conservation with sustainable use and are located across 134 countries, with 21 new reserves added in… Continue reading World’s diverse biospheres ‘making peace with the natural world’

Ukraine: UN condemns latest wave of Russian attacks

3 November 2023Peace and Security Russia has bombarded more than 100 Ukrainian towns across nearly half of its regions in the past two days according to the Ukrainian Government, many near the frontlines. UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric strongly condemned “the latest wave of attacks against critical infrastructure in various parts of the country, which reportedly… Continue reading Ukraine: UN condemns latest wave of Russian attacks

Sudan: Women and girls abducted, held ‘in slave-like conditions’ in Darfur

The stark report comes against the backdrop of a sharp uptick in fighting between the Government’s Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and RSF and heightened intercommunal tensions in the restive region. The rival militaries plunged the country into a brutal civil war more than six months ago. Thousands have died and more than 5.7 million are… Continue reading Sudan: Women and girls abducted, held ‘in slave-like conditions’ in Darfur

Israel-Palestine crisis: ‘It’s the innocent civilians who are losing’

Briefing reporters in Geneva on Friday UN health agency (WHO) spokesperson Christian Lindmeier said that in Israel, where 1,400 people have been killed so far, and in Gaza, where over 9,000 have been killed according to Hamas run authorities, 70 per cent of the victims are women and children. “It’s the innocent civilians that are… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: ‘It’s the innocent civilians who are losing’

World News in Brief: Russia pulls out of nuclear test ban treaty, climate ‘health crisis’, pushback against bullying

It opened for signatures in 1996 and has been ratified by 178 countries. Some major powers including the US and China have not done so, and it has yet to come into force, lacking the required support. According to the Kremlin, say media reports, the move levels the nuclear playing field given the failure of… Continue reading World News in Brief: Russia pulls out of nuclear test ban treaty, climate ‘health crisis’, pushback against bullying

Day highlighting journalists under fire focuses on protection during elections

Between January 2019 and June 2022, the agency documented 759 individual attacks against journalists, including five killings, during 89 elections in 70 countries. Most of these attacks – which included beating and arbitrary arrest – were committed by police and security forces. Attacked from all around  The findings come in a report published in tandem with the International Day to End… Continue reading Day highlighting journalists under fire focuses on protection during elections

Climate action: ‘Take steps to close the adaptation gap, now’

The Adaptation Gap Report 2023 issued by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), says the world is underprepared, under invested and lacking the necessary planning, leaving us all exposed. It warns that instead of speeding up, progress on adapting to climate change is stalling. The slowdown extends to finance, planning and implementation, says UNEP, with massive… Continue reading Climate action: ‘Take steps to close the adaptation gap, now’

Israel-Palestine crisis: Gaza’s north cut off from aid; death toll rising

2 November 2023Peace and Security The number of people killed in Gaza is nearing the 9,000 mark amid mounting concerns over the aftermath of Israeli airstrikes on a densely-populated refugee camp near Gaza City, while a key hospital has stopped operations and UN humanitarians are unable to deliver aid to the north as the ground… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: Gaza’s north cut off from aid; death toll rising

Rise in intimidation, settler violence in the West Bank, warns OCHA

1 November 2023Peace and Security More than 820 Palestinians in the occupied West Bank have been displaced amid settler violence and increased movement restrictions since the Hamas terror attacks of 7 October and the start of Israel’s assault on Gaza, the UN relief wing said on Wednesday. Israeli settler violence has increased significantly, from an… Continue reading Rise in intimidation, settler violence in the West Bank, warns OCHA

Israel-Palestine crisis: UN welcomes first medical evacuations from Gaza

“We have been working with Egypt’s Health Ministry on planning for medical evacuations and will continue to support,” said the World Health Organization (WHO) head. His comments came amid reports that the Rafah passenger terminal between Egypt and Gaza had been allowed to opened on an exceptional basis Wednesday morning for the first time since… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis: UN welcomes first medical evacuations from Gaza

On sacred ground in Nepal, UN chief calls for global action for peace

“It is an honor to be here in Lumbini – a site of spirituality, serenity, and peace,” Mr. Guterres began.   “I am deeply moved to have been invited to pay tribute to Lord Buddha.” A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Lumbini in southern Nepal, is known as the birthplace of Lord Buddha. It holds immense… Continue reading On sacred ground in Nepal, UN chief calls for global action for peace

Guterres blasts ‘completely inadequate’ levels of aid for Gaza civilians

Secretary-General António Guterres also reiterated his call for an “immediate humanitarian ceasefire” between Israeli forces and militants from Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, and other militant groups. Consistent flow of aid essential In a statement, Mr. Guterres said depriving Gaza’s people basic supplies was only “compounding the human tragedy” of the conflict, calling for… Continue reading Guterres blasts ‘completely inadequate’ levels of aid for Gaza civilians

Amid Middle East crisis, ‘brutal and far-reaching’ war continues in Ukraine

31 October 2023Humanitarian Aid As the world’s attention focuses on the unfolding emergency in the Gaza Strip, a senior UN aid official on Tuesday urged the Security Council not to overlook the equally “brutal and far-reaching” crisis in Ukraine. Ramesh Rajasingham, Director of the Coordination Division at the UN relief wing OCHA, addressed ambassadors, highlighting… Continue reading Amid Middle East crisis, ‘brutal and far-reaching’ war continues in Ukraine

Toll of Israel-Palestine crisis on children ‘beyond devastating’

UN relief chief Martin Griffiths, who has been visiting Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory, spoke to families in Gaza over the phone from east Jerusalem on Tuesday and said that what they have endured since the start of Israel’s retaliation for Hamas’ deadly 7 October attacks is “beyond devastating”. “When an eight-year-old tells you… Continue reading Toll of Israel-Palestine crisis on children ‘beyond devastating’

Upcoming COP28 summit must ‘respond decisively’ to gaps in global climate action

30 October 2023Climate and Environment Next month’s UN climate summit in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) must respond decisively to the gaps in the intranational community’s response climate crisis, Deputy-Secretary-General Amina Mohamed said on Monday. Ms. Mohammed, delivering opening remarks to a preparatory meeting, or Pre-Cop, being held in Abu Dahbi, underscored that the next… Continue reading Upcoming COP28 summit must ‘respond decisively’ to gaps in global climate action

Immediate de-escalation ‘only antidote’ to conflict in Syria

Briefing the Security Council, Geir Pedersen said the country had been in a “strategic stalemate” since March 2020, with the brutal conflict now marked by static front lines, persistent violence, and sporadic escalation in fighting. De facto authorities are strengthening control, while foreign armies remain active, he told ambassadors. The lack of a meaningful political… Continue reading Immediate de-escalation ‘only antidote’ to conflict in Syria

UPDATING LIVE: UN Security Council to meet again on Gaza crisis

30 October 2023Peace and Security Following four failed efforts to reach consensus on a Gaza resolution, the UN Security Council is set to meet on Monday afternoon (New York time) to discuss the ongoing crisis, amid continuing Israeli bombardment and reported ground incursions. We will have the live coverage of the meeting here as soon… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: UN Security Council to meet again on Gaza crisis

‘Stop the madness’ of climate change, UN chief declares

30 October 2023Climate and Environment UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Monday called on the world to “stop the madness” of climate change as he visited the Everest region in Nepal where melting glaciers are putting entire communities at risk of extinction. Nepal has lost almost a third of its ice volume in 30 years, with… Continue reading ‘Stop the madness’ of climate change, UN chief declares

Tackling climate mis/disinformation: ‘An urgent frontier for action’

Scientists agree that climate change is real and is caused by unsustainable human activity such as the burning of fossil fuels, yet certain actors continue to spread mis- and disinformation, creating harmful misperceptions that can stifle effective climate action. Climate action is one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. In a discussion Tackling mis/dis-information: An urgent… Continue reading Tackling climate mis/disinformation: ‘An urgent frontier for action’

Gaza hospitals hanging on by a thread: UN humanitarians

The vicinities of Shifa and Al Quds hospitals in Gaza city and of the Indonesian hospital in northern Gaza, have been bombarded over the weekend, UN humanitarian affairs coordination office OCHA said. “This followed renewed calls by the Israeli military to evacuate these facilities immediately,” OCHA added. Evacuation remains ‘impossible’ According to OCHA, some 117,000… Continue reading Gaza hospitals hanging on by a thread: UN humanitarians

UN seeks end to ‘colossal’ humanitarian tragedy as Sudan’s military factions resume Saudi-hosted talks

29 October 2023Peace and Security The United Nations has welcomed the resumption of talks in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, to end the months-long conflict between the Sudanese army and its rival paramilitary force which lefts scores dead and sent the northeast African country spiraling into humanitarian crisis. “The Jeddah talks cannot have started soon enough. More… Continue reading UN seeks end to ‘colossal’ humanitarian tragedy as Sudan’s military factions resume Saudi-hosted talks

Thousands in Gaza storm UN warehouses; a sign of desperation after weeks-long ‘siege’

The United Nations agency dealing with Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, and the UN World Foord Programme (WFP) were among the humanitarian organizations reporting the incidents, which follow a harrowing 24-hour communication blackout and persistent access challenges. One of the warehouses that was stormed, in Deir al-Balah, is where UNRWA stores supplies from the humanitarian convoys coming… Continue reading Thousands in Gaza storm UN warehouses; a sign of desperation after weeks-long ‘siege’

Israel-Palestine crisis has ‘reached an unprecedented level of dehumanisation’: Independent rights expert

In an interview with UN News, UN Human Rights Council-appointed expert Francesca Albanese, said it was “impossible to describe the pain and suffering that Israelis are going through because of what happened to them because there are not only those who were killed, those who were taken hostage, but there is an entire population that… Continue reading Israel-Palestine crisis has ‘reached an unprecedented level of dehumanisation’: Independent rights expert

Gaza Crisis: UN ramps up calls for humanitarian truce as Israeli bombardments cut communications, cripple healthcare

28 October 2023Humanitarian Aid United Nations agencies and officials on Saturday reiterated calls for a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza after another night of heavy bombing left hospitals and healthcare facilities without electricity and civilians across the enclave virtually “cut off from the outside world”.  Secretary-General António Guterres said on X, formerly Twitter: “I reiterate my… Continue reading Gaza Crisis: UN ramps up calls for humanitarian truce as Israeli bombardments cut communications, cripple healthcare

World News in Brief: Ukraine aid convoy, attacks in South Sudan, radioactive discharge update

A UN inter-agency convoy reached the front-line community of Huliaipole, located in the Zaporizhzhia region, bringing medicine, shelter kits, hygiene items and other assistance to support some 2,000 people. The town has suffered large-scale destruction and remains without power, water and gas, said UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric, speaking from New York. “Today’s humanitarian convoy was… Continue reading World News in Brief: Ukraine aid convoy, attacks in South Sudan, radioactive discharge update

Gaza crisis: General Assembly adopts resolution calling for ‘humanitarian truce’, civilian protection

27 October 2023Peace and Security The United Nations General Assembly on Friday adopted a major resolution on the Gaza crisis, calling for an “immediate, durable and sustained humanitarian truce leading to a cessation of hostilities.” The resolution breaks the deadlock at the UN over a response to the Israel-Palestine crisis which erupted on 7 October,… Continue reading Gaza crisis: General Assembly adopts resolution calling for ‘humanitarian truce’, civilian protection

Explainer: Fighting for facts amid crisis in Israel and Gaza

Harmful disinformation about the ongoing conflict in the wake of the 7 October attacks by Hamas against Israel continues to circulate online, with potentially dangerous consequences on the ground. While misinformation refers to the accidental spread of falsehoods, disinformation can be circulated intentionally by State or non-State actors, including during an armed conflict, to influence… Continue reading Explainer: Fighting for facts amid crisis in Israel and Gaza

Explainer: What is a UN General Assembly emergency special session and why it matters

What’s an emergency special session? When the UN Security Council is unable to shoulder its primary responsibility to maintain international peace and security, as has thus far been the case following the 7 October outbreak of the latest Israel-Palestine crisis, the General Assembly can consider the matter immediately in an emergency special session. UN Member… Continue reading Explainer: What is a UN General Assembly emergency special session and why it matters

Syrian war at ‘worst point’ in four years, says Commission of Inquiry head

27 October 2023Human Rights The world cannot forget about Syria, the Head of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the country has said, while also highlighting how the war there is connected to the conflict raging in the Middle East.  Paulo Pinheiro spoke to UN News this week after presenting his latest report to… Continue reading Syrian war at ‘worst point’ in four years, says Commission of Inquiry head

‘History is judging us all,’ Guterres says in fresh appeal for Gaza aid access

27 October 2023Humanitarian Aid With the humanitarian system in Gaza on the verge of “total collapse”, UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Friday again appealed for greater aid access to the besieged enclave, where “misery is growing by the minute.”  “Life-saving humanitarian aid – food, water, medicine, fuel – must be allowed to reach all civilians… Continue reading ‘History is judging us all,’ Guterres says in fresh appeal for Gaza aid access

Gaza: Testimonies highlight grim plight of civilians expecting to die

Volker Türk’s appeal came as UN humanitarians continued to issue dire warnings about the full scale of the humanitarian crisis in the enclave. ‘Crumbs’ of aid The head of the UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA), said that the “few (aid) trucks” which have come in from Egypt since 21 October are “nothing more than… Continue reading Gaza: Testimonies highlight grim plight of civilians expecting to die

World News in Brief: Ukraine dam disaster update, childcare investment, healthcare under fire in Sudan

These are the grim findings of an assessment published by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) on Thursday, which calls for both immediate and long-term remediation measures. Hundreds of square kilometres were flooded in the disaster, and thousands of square kilometres of reservoir and wetlands were desiccated. UNEP’s preliminary assessment carried out at the request of… Continue reading World News in Brief: Ukraine dam disaster update, childcare investment, healthcare under fire in Sudan

International support critical to forge lasting peace in Central African Republic

Ms. Rugwabiza, who also heads the UN Mission in the country, MINUSCA, presented its latest report covering developments in the wake of the 31 July constitutional referendum. She said MINUSCA continues to support Government efforts to “decentralize” the peace process with armed groups, including recent initiatives to extend state presence in areas that have been… Continue reading International support critical to forge lasting peace in Central African Republic

UPDATING LIVE: UN General Assembly convenes emergency meeting on Gaza

26 October 2023Peace and Security The United Nations General Assembly on Thursday morning, in New York, is convening an emergency special session on the Israel-Gaza conflict, amid a continuing deadlock at the Security Council, and the situation in the enclave getting more dire by the hour. 09:00 (New York) The tenth Emergency Special Session of… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: UN General Assembly convenes emergency meeting on Gaza

Israel-Palestine: Gazans ‘left with nothing but impossible choices’

Reports of an overnight Israeli military incursion using tanks in northern Gaza followed another series of calls by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) for civilians in Gaza City to evacuate – warnings which “make no difference” because “people have nowhere to go or are unable to move”, according to the UN’s top humanitarian official in… Continue reading Israel-Palestine: Gazans ‘left with nothing but impossible choices’

More action needed to advance women’s role in global peace and security

Addressing the Council’s annual debate on resolution 1325, he appealed for countries to “urgently bridge the gap between rhetoric and reality” through concrete action in the areas of participation, financing and leadership. “Of 18 peace agreements reached last year, only one was signed or witnessed by a representative of a women’s group or organization,” he… Continue reading More action needed to advance women’s role in global peace and security

First Person: Israel’s health system responds to October attacks

Dr. Thieren spent almost two weeks travelling across the country to meet with survivors, authorities and families of more than 200 hostages held captive in Gaza. WHO offered humanitarian support to Israel’s health response immediately after the attacks. At the time, Israel’s Health Ministry replied that the system was coping, but that it would not… Continue reading First Person: Israel’s health system responds to October attacks

Israel-Palestine: Security Council to vote on new resolutions over Gaza crisis

25 October 2023Peace and Security With the failure of two resolutions calling for a humanitarian pause in Gaza, the Security Council is expected to take up two new proposals, led by Russia and United States, aimed at bringing relief to civilians in the besieged enclave. Last Monday, a previous Russian-led draft resolution calling for an… Continue reading Israel-Palestine: Security Council to vote on new resolutions over Gaza crisis

‘Tipping points’ of risk pose new threats, UN report warns

25 October 2023Climate and Environment No ground water available? No access to satellite data because of where you live or home insurance due to recent natural disasters? A new UN report launched on Wednesday has some useful insights on the “risk tipping points” which are becoming an increasing challenge worldwide.  Tipping points are reached when… Continue reading ‘Tipping points’ of risk pose new threats, UN report warns

UN chief hits back at ‘false’ claim he justified Hamas terror attacks

25 October 2023Peace and Security The UN Secretary-General on Wednesday firmly rebuked what he described as the “false” claim by top Israeli diplomats that he had sought to justify the terror attacks of 7 October by Hamas in a speech he delivered to the Security Council.  Addressing Tuesday’s debate in the Council on the worsening… Continue reading UN chief hits back at ‘false’ claim he justified Hamas terror attacks

Israel-Palestine: Blockade puts Gaza aid on the line, WHO spotlights soaring mental health needs in Israel

An alert from Gaza’s main hospital in the south of the enclave that lifesaving operations would stop on Wednesday evening because of fuel shortages followed an appeal from UN chief António Guterres for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire. A truce was needed, he told the Security Council on Tuesday, “to ease epic suffering, make the delivery… Continue reading Israel-Palestine: Blockade puts Gaza aid on the line, WHO spotlights soaring mental health needs in Israel

UPDATING LIVE: Security Council meets on Israel-Palestine as Gaza crisis deepens

Members of the UN Security Council vote on a draft resolution draft resolution on the situation in the Middle East (file photo).. 24 October 2023Peace and Security 0945: The UN Security Council meets again within the next few minutes at UN Headquarters in New York for what was a scheduled quarterly meeting on the ongoing… Continue reading UPDATING LIVE: Security Council meets on Israel-Palestine as Gaza crisis deepens