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Clarity still needed on effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccine passports, says UN health agency

Being vaccinated against COVID-19 may not prevent transmission and vaccination passports may not be an “effective strategy” for restarting travel, the World Health Organization (WHO) cautioned on Tuesday.

More climate action needed during ‘make-or-break year’ for people and planet 

The world needs “a major breakthrough” to slow the pace of climate change and build resilience to protect the most vulnerable from increasingly severe and frequent climate impacts, the deputy UN chief told a crucial high-level meeting on Wednesday, looking ahead to November’s COP26. 

Plastic pollution disproportionately hitting marginalized groups, UN environment report finds

Vulnerable communities disproportionately bear the brunt of environmental degradation caused by plastics pollution, and action is urgently needed to address the issue and restore access to human rights, health and well-being, according to a new UN report published on Tuesday.  

Syria’s decade of ‘death, destruction, displacement, disease, dread and despair’

Now is not the moment to reduce humanitarian aid to Syria, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator told the Security Council on Monday, stressing that after 10 years of conflict, more support was needed to avoid further “dramatic and widespread” deterioration. 

Action for Peacekeeping: Progress made, but the work’s ‘far from done’

Three years since the UN Secretary-General launched his Action for Peacekeeping (A4P) initiative to strengthening peacekeeping operations worldwide, “significant progress” has been made “but our work is far from done”, the peacekeeping chief said on Monday. 

Vintage French rugby pros tackle refugee integration in the vineyards

An association run by former rugby professionals in the French wine-making region of Bordeaux is supporting the integration of refugees, through career training, work opportunities and regular sports sessions.

‘Racist lie’ must end, UN chief warns on Remembrance Day for enslaved people 

Although the transatlantic slave trade ended more than two centuries ago, “the ideas of white supremacy that underpinned it remain alive”, the UN chief said on Thursday, the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade. 

Empowering women in peace operations remains top priority, says UN peacekeeping chief

Praising women’s fundamental contributions to peacekeeping and peacebuilding efforts, the UN peacekeeping chief reiterated on Thursday that empowering women in the military remains a top priority, but to achieve this goal needs “all hands on deck”.

Biodiversity at risk, threatens human survival, UN forum hears 

As the living tissue of the earth, biodiversity is “intimately linked to human health” the head of the UN’s scientific agency told a global forum on Wednesday, noting that “we are part of that living tissue”. 

Amidst ‘heightened intensity’ actions toward peace must be ‘in the best interests’ of Afghans

Amidst a period of “heightened intensity”, the UN Special Representative told the Security Council on Tuesday that the killing, displacement and suffering of the Afghan people “must end now”.