This is the News in Brief from the United Nations.
Venezuela, a ‘very real humanitarian problem’: UN humanitarian chief warns Security Council
Over a month after two competing resolutions on Venezuela failed to pass, the UN Security Council met on Wednesday to discuss the “very real humanitarian problem” facing the country, where close to 7 million people are in dire need of aid, and some 5,000 people continue to flee across borders every day.
Humanitarian Affairs chief, Mark Lowcock, told Security Council members that the United Nations is “willing and able to do more to relieve the suffering of the people of Venezuela, if it gets more help and support from all stakeholders”.
“We estimate that seven million people in Venezuela need humanitarian assistance. That is some 25 per cent of the population. There are people in need throughout the country, but needs are most severe in the three states in the south and the Zulia and Lara states in the west. People with chronic health conditions, pregnant and nursing women, children under five, indigenous people, people on the move, and those living with disabilities are among the most vulnerable.”
The UN has been expanding its humanitarian operations, releasing US$9 million from its emergency response fund, the CERF, and increasing the number of staff in the country from 210 to 400.
More than four in 10 women live in fear of refusing partner’s sexual demands, UN study finds
More than four in 10 women in 51 countries surveyed, feel they have no choice but to agree to their partner’s sexual demands, the UN sexual and reproductive health agency, UNFPA, said on Wednesday.
The findings, relating to women aged 15-49, are being published for the first time, as part of UNFPA’s State of World Population 2019 report.
Noting that they are also unable to make basic decisions about getting pregnant and accessing health care for themselves, the report highlights the needs to raise the level of consent and access to vital health services, for millions of women around the world.
Here’s Monica Ferro, Director of UNFPA in Geneva:
“More than 800 women die every day from preventable causes during pregnancy and childbirth. More than 200 million women want to prevent a pregnancy, but are not using a modern form of contraception, and one in three women will be subjected to violence at some point in their lives.”
According to the analysis, the absence of reproductive and sexual rights has negative repercussions on women’s education, income and safety, leaving them “unable to shape their own futures”.
UN ‘efforts to de-escalate the situation in Libya’ continue
And finally, UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric said that the Secretary-General was continuing to follow the situation in Libya closely.
Forces led by a rival administration in eastern Libya, have been skirmishing with troops loyal to the internationally-recognized Government on the outskirts of the capital Tripoli, leading to the postponement of a national reconciliation conference that was supposed to start on Sunday.
“The Secretary-General remains very concerned about the continued fighting in and around Tripoli, where clashes are reportedly intensifying, with increased use of artillery and airstrikes. He reminds all parties of their obligations under international humanitarian law and international human rights law to ensure the safety of all civilians. The Special Representative of the Secretary-General and his leadership team, the leadership team from the UN Mission in Libya, remain in Tripoli and continue to engage in talks with local and international interlocutors in an effort to de-escalate the situation.”
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) also said on Wednesday that a further escalation of violence in and around Tripoli has led to an upsurge in displacement, with over 5,800 fleeing their homes in recent days.
Ana Carmo, UN News.