This is the News in Brief from the United Nations.
Secretary-General nominates next UN Human Rights High Commissioner
The UN Secretary-General has announced former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet as his preferred choice to be the next United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.
Bachelet has previous UN experience, having been appointed as the first Executive Director of UN Women in 2010. She served two terms as President of Chile, from 2006 to 2010, and then from 2014 to 2018.
If her nomination is approved by the General Assembly on Friday, she will succeed Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, whose four-year term comes to a close at the end of August.
Casualties in Israel and Gaza following overnight violence
Despite calls from Nickolay Mladenov, the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, for all concerned parties to reduce tensions in Gaza, there has been renewed violence in the region, with several reported casualties.
Three Palestinians are reported dead following dozens of Israeli air strikes, with at least seven people in Southern Israel injured by a barrage of rocket fire from militants.
Working with all parties in the region, the UN is continuing efforts to de-escalate the current crisis, address humanitarian issues and work towards intra-Palestinian reconciliation.
Syrian aid to East Ghouta hampered by access restrictions
In the formerly rebel-held suburb of East Ghouta, near the Syrian capital Damascus, the United Nations and Syrian Arab Red Crescent are delivering essential supplies for 35,000 inhabitants in need of assistance in Arbin and Zamalka.
Conditions in the region remain dire, with severe damage to civilian infrastructure and insufficient services to meet the needs of an estimated 200,000 people living in the area.
Access to East Ghouta continues to prove a challenge. Speaking in Geneva, Jan Egeland, Senior Advisor to the UN Special Envoy for Syria, called for peaceful negotiations that protect civilians:
“The Member States have to help us get the humanitarian lifeline continuing, two million people are served ever month. That lifeline has to be expanded because there will be new people in need, because there is some fighting happening continuously .”
The United Nations is urging all warring parties to allow safe, sustained and unimpeded humanitarian access to those in need.
Conor Lennon, UN News.