News in Brief 16 March 2017 (AM)

16 March 2017

Families fleeing West Mosul in Iraq get frontline emergency aid from UN

In an effort to assist Iraqi families fleeing western Mosul, the UN is providing frontline emergency interventions in the camps for internally displaced persons.

Iraqi forces and their allies are fighting to liberate the area from the extremist group ISIL, also known as Daesh.

Around 97,000 individuals have fled the city so far, according to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

In the Qayarra and Jadaa camps, the agency is supporting a 24-hour delivery room as well as a mobile reproductive health clinic.

Attached to the delivery room is what’s being termed a “woman safe space” that also includes counselling and support services for survivors of gender-based violence.

In addition, hourly shuttles to facilitate transportation for women and girls seeking health and psycho-social support are being arranged.

Attack on humanitarian convoy in South Sudan condemned

An attack on a humanitarian convoy in South Sudan that took place on Wednesday has been strongly condemned by the Director-General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), William Lacy Swing.

Two people were shot dead and three others were injured in the assault.

The convoy was returning from a field mission to Yirol East County, in the central part of the country, when one of the vehicles was ambushed by unknown armed gunmen.

IOM’s health team is supporting four cholera treatment units in the area and providing assistance to communities affected by an outbreak that began in early February.

Across South Sudan, IOM is responding to the emergency needs of millions affected by the crisis that erupted in December 2013.

Insecurity and problems of access continually hinder the ability of aid agencies to reach the most vulnerable in many parts of the country.

Terrorist attacks in Syria “plainly designed” to thwart talks: UN special envoy

The terrorist attacks that took place in Syria’s capital Damascus on Wednesday were “plainly designed to spoil attempts to sustain political talks.”

UN Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura made the remarks shortly after the incident, which he said, coincided with the sixth anniversary of the conflict.

According to media reports, suicide bombers attacked the old palace of justice building and a restaurant, killing “more than two dozen” people.

Staffan de Mistura deplored the loss of innocent civilian lives.

He called for an end to all attacks against civilians “from any quarter in Syria”, and reiterated his call for the ceasefire to be fully observed, which is being challenged by violations on the ground.

The UN Special Envoy for Syria announced last week that he expects to convene intra-Syrian negotiations on 23 March.

In advance of the Geneva talks, actions designed to undermine the political track must not be allowed to succeed, he said.

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.

Duration: 2'56"


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