UN chief salutes “courage and leadership” of DPRK and Republic of Korea
The UN chief António Guterres has applauded the historic summit on Friday which took place between the leaders of the Republic of Korea, otherwise known as South Korea, and its northern neighbour, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, or DPRK.
The leader of DPRK, Kim Jong-un, and President Moon Jae-in, formally agreed to work towards ridding the Korean Peninsula of nuclear weapons, and push towards a full peace treaty, cementing the armistice which ended the Korean War in 1953.
Here’s UN Spokesperson, Stéphane Dujarric:
“Many around the world were moved by the powerful imagery of the two leaders coming together to advance harmony and peace on the Korean Peninsula. The Secretary-General salutes the courage and leadership that resulted in the important commitments and agreed actions outlined in the Panmunjom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification of the Korean Peninsula. The Secretary-General counts on the parties to build on their first meeting and swiftly implement all agreed actions to further inter-Korean trust-building and reconciliation; sincere dialogue; and progress towards sustainable peace and verifiable denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula.”
Mr. Guterres added that he was looking forward to further progress in advance of a planned summit between the President of the United States and Kim Jong-Un, due to take place in late May or June.
Innocent civilians caught in crossfire as violence surges: South Sudan mission chief
A surge in violent clashes across several states in South Sudan is having a “devastating impact” on thousands of civilians and disrupting humanitarian efforts, said the head of the UN mission there (UNMISS) on Friday.
Special Representative David Shearer, said that there was “deep concern” over the uptick in fighting across Unity State, Jonglei and Central Equatoria.
South Sudan’s been wracked by violence and a humanitarian crisis since factional fighting broke out between the President and former Vice-President’s forces in 2013.
The UNMISS chief said that more than 30 humanitarian workers had been relocated in the past two weeks, due to the escalating fighting.
“Innocent civilians are being caught in crossfire, including many women, children and elderly people and our teams on the ground are reporting incidents of killing, sexual violence, homes being burnt to the ground, cattle raiding, and the looting of hospitals and schools.”
Mr. Shearer said the success of upcoming peace talks at a regional so-called Revitalization Forum, depended on all parties laying down arms, and coming together “in good faith”.
Concern rises for thousands living in and around besieged Palestinian camp in Syria
Concern is rising for the well-being of tens-of-thousands of civilians trapped in and around the Yarmouk camp in Syria, which is home to the largest Palestine refugee community in the country.
That’s according to UN humanitarian workers who reported an intensification in the fighting around the besieged area, and surrounding areas of the capital Damascus.
After a period of calm on Thursday, hostilities resumed and the crossings from Syrian government-controlled areas to the town of Yalda, Babilla, and Beit Sahm, remain closed.
More details from Stéphane Dujarric again.
"Since hostilities escalated in the besieged area of Yarmouk on 19 April, shelling has reportedly resulted in nine deaths and left 65 people injured, and caused displacement. The UN in Syria stands ready to scale up the humanitarian response for people in need in southern Damascus.”
Matt Wells, UN News.