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News in Brief 24 May 2023

News in Brief 24 May 2023

This is the News in Brief from the United Nations.

Türk to Sudan’s warring generals: stop the ‘senseless violence’

The “senseless” fighting in Sudan must stop, and the warring generals should insist on zero tolerance for sexual violence, UN rights chief Volker Türk said on Wednesday.

Here he is speaking at a press conference in Geneva:

“General al-Burhan, General Dagalo, you must issue clear instructions – in no uncertain terms – to all those under your command, that there is zero tolerance for sexual violence, and that perpetrators of all violations will be held accountable. Civilians must be spared. And you must stop this senseless violence now.”

Mr. Türk also stressed that efforts to put an end to the conflict must have human rights at their core “for any peace to be sustained”.

Meanwhile, UN refugee chief Filippo Grandi tweeted that more than 300,000 people have now fled Sudan to neighbouring countries, with many crossing over the borders to Chad and Egypt in the last few days. He called for urgent funding to support countries hosting the refugees.

On Tuesday, the UN’s partners on the ground warned about an impending humanitarian disaster in eastern Chad’s Borota camp, which recently welcomed 30,000 new refugees in just a couple of days, adding to already soaring aid and protection needs.

Climate shocks, Sudan conflict worsens Horn of Africa hunger crisis

The effects of the conflict in Sudan are also being felt in the Horn of Africa, where millions of people are trapped in a hunger emergency, the UN World Food Programme (WFP) warned on Wednesday.

The longest drought on record in the region has given way to rains, flash flooding, and shattering livelihoods, WFP said. Limited humanitarian resources are being stretched further by increasing numbers of people fleeing Sudan into “desperately” food insecure Ethiopia and South Sudan.

The agency said that the last three years of drought brought severe hunger to more than 23 million people across parts of Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, along with “unacceptable” levels of mortality and malnutrition.

Food and energy prices remain “stubbornly” high. According to WFP, the average price of essential goods in eastern Africa in March 2023, was 40 per cent higher than a year ago.

The agency said that it urgently requires funding to the tune of $810 million over the next six months for life-saving assistance and long-term resilience-building in the Horn of Africa.

Green light for global greenhouse gas tracking network

A hundred and ninety-three countries have unanimously approved the creation of a global greenhouse gas monitoring mechanism, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) announced on Wednesday.

The landmark decision comes as heat-trapping greenhouse gas concentrations are at record levels – “higher than at any time over the last 800,000 years”, WMO warned.

The new Global Greenhouse Gas Watch will combine observations from Earth and from space with modelling, to fill critical information gaps. It will build on WMO’s experience in coordinating international collaboration on weather prediction.

The agency said that the exchange of data will be “free and unrestricted”, in support of the Paris Agreement on climate change.

According to WMO, between 1990 and 2021, the warming effect on our climate from the main greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide, rose by nearly 50 per cent.

Dominika Tomaszewska-Mortimer, UN News.

Audio Credit
Dominika Tomaszewska-Mortimer, UN News - Geneva
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© WFP/Geneva Costopulos