This is the News in Brief from the United Nations.
UN condemns double bombings in Kabul, killing first-responders, sportsmen, journalists
The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, known as UNAMA, has condemned an attack on a Kabul sports centre on Wednesday that killed at least 22 people – including first-responders, sportsmen and two journalists covering the bombing for a local news agency.
Around 75 others were wounded.
The first of two blasts occurred when a suicide bomber detonated himself inside a gym at a wrestling event. A car bomb was triggered soon after, as first responders attended the scene.
“This latest cynical act of terror targeting ordinary citizens of Kabul, along with first responders and journalists, is deeply shocking,” said Tadamichi Yamamoto, the UN Special Representative for Afghanistan, adding that the UN joined Afghans “in expressing our revulsion at such a callous attack.”
UN chief says world needs ‘legally binding’ nuclear-test ban to prevent ‘catastrophic impact’
On the annual observance of the International Day Against Nuclear Tests, Secretary-General António Guterres has highlighted the “inextricable connection” between testing and eliminating nuclear weapons across the world.
At a high-level meeting in New York, he recalled his visit in August to Japan where he met with survivors of the atomic bomb attack on Nagasaki, explaining that through their testimonies, “we are reminded of the need to ensure that nuclear weapons are never used again.”
“The catastrophic impact of nuclear testing has had profound effects on the environment, human health, food security and economic development.
And that is why we should all welcome the robust norm against nuclear testing that has developed since the end of the Cold War, including through the voluntary moratoria implemented by most States that possess nuclear weapons.”
UN applauds India’s ‘ground-breaking’ Supreme Court ruling to decriminalize gay sex
And on a more upbeat note, a landmark Supreme Court ruling in India that decriminalizes gay sex has been welcomed by the UN agency working to end AIDS, known as UNAIDS, as a “ground-breaking decision.”
Executive Director Michel Sidibé called the day one of gay pride and celebration, saying it is “a day when respect and dignity was finally restored in India for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people.”
UN Secretary-General António Guterres also welcomed the decision by India’s highest court, applauding the verdict of the Chief Justice, who said that discrimination and prejudice are always “irrational, indefensible, and arbitrary.”
For its part, the UN in India expressed hopes that the court’s ruling will be the first step towards guaranteeing the full range of fundamental rights to LGBTI people.
Liz Scaffidi, UN News.