This is the News in Brief from the United Nations.
Food insecurity plagues South Sudan
Despite improving conditions in South Sudan, more than half the country struggles to survive, according to three United Nations agencies working on the ground there.
A so-called “Integrated Food Security Phase Classification” update was released on Wednesday by the UN Children's Fund, (UNICEF) Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and World Food Programme (WFP) together with the South Sudanese Government.
It spelled out that not only do acute malnutrition levels among children exceed emergency thresholds, but more than 6.3 million people do not know where their next meal is coming from.
The report estimates that 10,000 people are currently at a catastrophic level of acute food insecurity, about 1.7 million at emergency level and another 4.6 million people are experiencing official crisis level.
UNRWA chief appeals to Arab League for support
Turning to the Middle East, at the Arab League Summit, the head of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees, known as UNRWA, has urgently called on Arab States to continue their financial and political support to Palestine refugees.
Addressing the Council of Arab Foreign Ministers, Pierre Krähenbühl highlighted that UNRWA’s work remains vital, especially without a “just and lasting solution” to the plight of Palestine refugees.
He thanked the League for its support and asked members to maintain the same level of commitment to the UN agency, particularly in the run-up to the renewal of its mandate in November.
Mining should boost development and human rights in Mongolia: UN expert
And finally, to Mongolia where after a 10-day visit, the Independent Expert on Foreign Debt and Human Rights said that the mining sector there should play a transformative role for economic, social and cultural rights, and spur human development.
Juan Pablo Bohoslavskysaid mining activities “have been associated with serious adverse human rights impacts”, affecting housing, health, water and sanitation.
After visiting one mine in the Gobi Desert, where water consumption is a major issue, he encouraged conversations with local communities, particularly herders, to find a satisfactory solution or consider other alternative water sources.
The UN expert also recommended that the Government establish a permanent platform for involved parties to discuss environmental claims in the mining sector.
“For herder communities accessing water in the desert is the basis of their livelihood,” he stressed.
Liz Scaffidi, UN News