This is the news in brief from the United Nations.
Libya: clashes intensified in southern Tripoli, UN health agency deploys emergency teams
Clashes have reportedly further intensified in southern parts of the Libyan capital, with fighting in the past 24 hours the heaviest since hostilities began in and around Tripoli.
According to humanitarian partners in the country, families who have become stranded in conflict areas, not only fear for their safety but are also starting to run out of supplies, said UN Spokeperson, Stéphane Dujarric, briefing reporters on Thursday.
He said that “emergency service providers are operating with great personal risk, with three medical staff reportedly killed and four first responders reportedly injured.”
The World Health Organization (WHO) has deployed emergency medical teams to help hospitals cope with the casualties, and support surgical staff, in collaboration with the country’s Ministry of Health.
Here’s Stéphane Dujarric:
“WHO plans to deploy additional emergency teams and supplies, to support first-line responders and has activated contingency stocks which were strategically pre-positioned before the fighting began. The agency is also working with partners to support the medical needs of the displaced and migrants.”
According to humanitarian affairs coordination office OCHA, multiple civilian shelters have been set up in various areas of Tripoli, but at least two have already been evacuated, due to intensifying fighting.
The UN continues to call for an immediate humanitarian truce to allow access for emergency services and the voluntary passage of civilians, away from conflict areas.
Nigeria: Urgent humanitarian aid needed, to support 10,000 forced to relocate
The UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon, has called on the Government of Nigeria to provide urgent humanitarian assistance to 10,000 women, men and children who were forced to relocate to Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State, from a town 40 kilometers away.
The civilians were ordered to leave their homes in Jakana town, in the middle of Monday night by the Nigerian military, without any prior warning.
According to the military, the civilians have been relocated to the Bakassi camp for internally displaced people for security reasons, ahead of planned operations in the area.
“The entire town of Jakana was emptied, and people were forced to move to Maiduguri with very little time to collect personal belongings,” said Mr. Kallon. Some had arrived without even the shoes on their feet, he added.
He said the UN was “urging the government to urgently provide safety, shelter, food, water and medical care to the displaced civilians”, in addition to information about when they will be allowed to return home.
Escalation of fighting in Syria’s Idlib could have ‘catastrophic’ consequences
And finally, an update on Syria: amid reports of intensifying clashes, and increased civilian casualties, the UN’s newly appointed humanitarian advisor for the country called for an immediate de-escalation of the ongoing violence on Thursday.
Najat Rochdi took office as the Senior Humanitarian Advisor to the UN Special Envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen, only last month.
In her first media briefing in Geneva, she said immediate action was required in order to facilitate access for humanitarian aid and offer protection to its civilians.
“The conflict in Syria is now in its ninth year, and massive humanitarian needs persist,” she told journalists, while noting that “active conflict continues in some areas as does the risk of further escalation in Idlib with potentially catastrophic humanitarian consequences.”
Ms. Rochdi stressed that the UN needs around $27 million to sustain the humanitarian response “for the next several months.”
Matt Wells, United Nations.