This is the news in brief from the United Nations.
Women outliving men ‘everywhere’, new UN health agency statistics report shows
Average life-expectancy globally has increased by five-and-a-half years since the turn of the century, and women outlive men “everywhere”, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday.
Dr. Richard Cibulskis, main author of WHO’s World Health Statistics Overview 2019, said that whether it was homicide deaths, road accidents, suicides, whetheror cardiovascular disease, “time and time again, men are doing worse than women”.
Average life expectancy overall rose from 66.5, to 72 years. The report also shows that “healthy” life expectancy - the number of years individuals live in full health - increased from 58.5 years in 2000, to 63.3 in 2016.
Differing attitudes to healthcare between men and women, help to account for the discrepancy in life expectancy between the sexes, the report suggests.
In countries with generalized HIV epidemics, for example, men “are less likely than women to take an HIV test, less likely to access antiretroviral therapy and more likely to die of AIDS-related illnesses than women”, the study finds.
Removing deadly mines means ‘new horizons and hope’, clears a path to SDGs, says UN chief
The path towards achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development must be “clear of landmines, explosive remnants of war and improvised explosive devices”, the UN chief said on Thursday, International Mine Awareness Day.
“All people have the right to live in security, and not fear their next step”, António Guterres spelled out in his message, lauding mine action, and the UN teams who put their lives on the line every day.
Moreover, the UN chief described it as “giving people and communities new horizons and hope”.
For more than 20 years, the UN has helped States free themselves from the threat of mines, explosive remnants of war and improvised explosive devices.
This year, the Organization launched “Safe Ground”, a new strategy and campaign to “ensure that no one, no State, and no war zone is left behind”.
UN agencies urge Brunei to ‘suspend or repeal’ strict new penal code
UNAIDS, and the UN reproductive health agency, the UNFPA, have called on Brunei to either suspend or repeal its strict new penal code, based on Islamic Sharia law, which came into force across the small southeast Asian monarchy on Wednesday.
The provisions, which impose the death penalty on those caught having same-sex relations, adulterers, and for those having children outside wedlock, breach a number of “international human rights norms” the agencies said on Thursday.
“These extreme and unjustified punishments will drive people underground and out of reach of life-saving HIV treatment and prevention services,” said Michel Sidibé, Executive Director of UNAIDS.
The head of UNFPA, Natalie Kanem, said that “every person…has an equal right to live free from violence, persecution, discrimination and stigma of any kind.”
The agencies said they were concerned by increasingly punitive and discriminatory policies and rhetoric in a number of countries, which may potentially give rise to violence, stigma and discrimination.
Matt Wells, UN News.