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UN, Iran mark first anniversary of earthquake that devastated Bam cultural area

Calling the Iranian Bam cultural landscape "an outstanding representation of the interaction of man and nature in a desert environment" the United Nations cultural agency today marked the first anniversary of the earthquake that devastated the area by formally inscribing Bam on the World Heritage List and the endangered heritage list.

Despite progress, Russia has much to do to improve women’s rights – UN expert

Although Russia has undergone administrative and legislative change that has contributed to improvements in the situation of women over the past decade, violence – particularly in the home – continues to cause injuries and claim the lives of thousands of women annually, according to a United Nations expert.

General Assembly votes for funds to strengthen world body's security

Noting "a new security environment," the United Nations General Assembly has approved an appropriation of nearly $54 million to strengthen and unify the world body's security system.

DR of Congo: UN mission says new security zone leading to repatriation

The presence of a United Nations-defended security zone in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has led 40,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) to return home, the deputy force commander of the UN peacekeeping mission, MONUC, says.

Annan condemns deadly bombing outside home of Iraqi political leader

Voicing his dismay at today's deadly bombing outside the Baghdad home of an Iraqi political leader, Secretary-General Kofi Annan urged the country's people to unite so that next month's national assembly elections can be peacefully and smoothly staged.

UN experts rush to Indian Ocean countries devastated by quake and tidal waves

United Nations relief experts are headed to Sri Lanka to help coordinate the international response to the massive tidal waves that struck the Indian Ocean nation after a series of earthquakes rocked the western coast of Northern Sumatra in Indonesia as well as the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

Plight of Ugandan child soldiers reveals overall neglect of children's rights - UN

Throwing a spotlight once again on the plight of thousands of children abducted as soldiers and sex slaves by Ugandan rebels, deemed one the world's most under-reported stories, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) has called for the tragedy to serve as a springboard to revamp the global approach to children's rights.

UNICEF helps bring the classroom to tens of thousands of school-less Afghans

If the children cannot get to the schools, bring the schools to the children. Such is the philosophy behind a new Afghan initiative launched with United Nations support that already serves nearly 50,000 youngsters, and which it is hoped will reach up to 500,000 children by mid-2005.

Relief aid push planned for UN-monitored buffer area in eastern DR Congo

United Nations humanitarian agencies and their partners are planning a new relief aid push aimed at helping internally displaced people (IDPs) in the troubled eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) now that a buffer zone there has restored a measure of security.

Annan calls for end to fighting in Nepal, urges talks between Government and Maoist rebels

With reports of an escalation in fighting and continued grave human rights violations emanating from Nepal, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today called for a quick end to hostilities and the start of talks between the Government and Maoist forces in the Himalayan kingdom.