This is the news in brief from the United Nations.
‘Dramatic rise’ in economic losses due to disasters: UN agency
Climate and other related natural disasters such as earthquakes and tsunamis have killed 1.3 million people over the last 20 years and left a further 4.4 billion injured, homeless or in need of emergency assistance, UN experts said on Wednesday.
In terms of the impact of disasters on the global economy between 1998 and 2017, affected countries reported direct losses of 2.9 trillion US Dollars. That’s more than twice what was lost in the previous two decades.
Illustrating the growing threat from climate change, extreme weather events now account for 77 per cent of total economic losses.
This represents a “dramatic rise” of 151 per cent compared with losses reported between 1978 and 1997.
Here’s senior UNISDR official, Ricardo Mena:
“The report shows that because of much higher vulnerability, people in low and middle income countries have seven times greater probabilities of being killed by a disaster than people in developed nations. This puts a big emphasis on the need to curb greenhouse gas emissions climate-related hazards, and the need to invest more in disaster risk reduction measures so that we do not allow for countries to create new risk, and we emphasise on the need to reduce existing risk to strengthen the resilience of people and nations. Otherwise the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals is going to be a very elusive target.”
UN chief “deeply disturbed by execution of juvenile offenders
In a statement issued on the World Day Against The Death Penalty, the UN Secretary-General has said that he is “deeply disturbed” by the number of juveniles sentenced to death this year.
Hundreds have been executed without being able to receive legal assistance, which may have spared them from the death penalty, due to being poor, women or from minority groups.
António Guterres added that, in some countries, people are sentenced to death in secret trials, without due process, increasing the potential for error or abuse, as is sometimes later demonstrated.
Almost 3,000 civilian deaths in Afghanistan this year
Civilians in Afghanistan continue to suffer high casualties, with the leading cause continuing to be the combined use of suicide and non-suicide improvised explosive devices by non-government fighters.
This is according to a new report from the UN Mission in Afghanistan, UNAMA, which documents nearly 3,000 deaths and more than 5,000 wounded between January and October of this year.
The UN Special Representative for Afghanistan, Tadamichi Yamamoto, called for an immediate and peaceful settlement to the conflict to end the suffering of the Afghan people.
In New York this is Connor Lennon for UN News.