This is the News In Brief from the United Nations.
Ebola fight ongoing amid evidence of ‘several massacres’ in DRC’s Ituri province
The vital work of tracing people infected with deadly Ebola virus disease in north-east Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is progressing, despite evidence of “several” massacres in the affected area earlier this month, the UN said on Friday.
In an update on the situation in Ituri and North Kivu provinces, nearly 11 months after the outbreak began, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported 2,284 cases of infection and 1,540 deaths.
At the same time, the UN human rights office, OHCHR, announced that a “robust” probe found that 117 people had been killed in villages in gold-rich Ituri between 10 and 13 June.
Here’s spokesperson Marta Hurtado: “The investigative team confirmed that at least 94 people had been killed in Djugu territory and 23 in Mahagi territory, including an as yet undetermined number of women and children. Some of the victims were beheaded. Homes and warehouses were burned down after being looted. The ferocity and scorched-earth nature of the attacks suggests the assailants intended to prevent survivors from being able to return to their villages.”
The development echoes an earlier alert from the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, that thousands of people displaced by violence in DRC’s Ituri province have arrived in Uganda.
An average of 311 people cross the border every day, double the number last month.
Earth is set to experience its five warmest years on record
Now for some hot weather news, and while it’s perhaps no surprise to hear that the last five years may soon be announced as the warmest on record, UN experts have warned that higher concentrations of CO2 and other gases, will also fuel global over-heating for generations to come.
The announcement by the World Meteorological Organization comes ahead of the Abu Dhabi Climate Meeting this weekend.
Its objective is to take stock of progress made by countries to limit greenhouse gas emissions, and galvanize initiatives, in advance of September’s Climate Action Summit in New York, called by UN Secretary-General António Guterres.
According to WMO, global temperatures have risen to close to 1 degree Celsius above the pre-industrial period, and time is running out to keep it to well under 2 degrees Celsius by the end of the century.
In a statement, WMO head, Petteri Taalas, said that it is important to realize what warnings about a climate emergency actually mean.
“Climate change impacts the ocean, water resources, food security, ecosystems and the sustainable development of the entire planet,” he said.
One migrant child reported dead or missing every day, UN calls for more protection
Around 1,600 children were reported dead or missing between 2014 and 2018 – an average of almost one every day – and many more go unrecorded, a UN report revealed on Friday.
“Fatal Journeys 4”, produced by the International Organization for Migration and UN children’s fund, UNICEF, highlights the need for better data on migrant deaths and disappearances.
There’s a particular need for more information on children, who constitute one of the most vulnerable groups of migrants.
From 2014 to 2018, IOM reported 32,000 migrant deaths.
Over half died or went missing in the Mediterranean Sea, and the remains of almost two-thirds of these victims have not been recovered.
In Myanmar, Rohingya Muslims fleeing conflict and persecution made up the vast majority of deaths recorded during migration in South-East Asia over the reporting period – more than 1,700 out of a total of 2,200.
In North America, meanwhile, the widely reported influx of migrants at the United States-Mexico border has seen an increasing number of deaths every year since 2014, totalling 1,907 over the five-year period.
Daniel Johnson, UN News.