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UNESCO chief condemns latest murder of Iraqi journalist

Responding to the mounting death toll of media professionals in Iraq, the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) today condemned the killing of the latest victim: Shehab Mohammad al-Hiti, editor of a new Iraqi weekly, al-Youm.

Darfur: UN-African Union peacekeeping force launches operations in El Fasher

The United Nations African Union hybrid peacekeeping operation for Darfur (UNAMID) today began operations at its El Fasher Headquarters in what the senior UN official there called a milestone for the strife-torn Sudanese region.

UN anti-drugs conference opens in Kabul

Stopping the flow of deadly drugs out of Afghanistan, where opium production has soared to record levels this year, is the focus of a two-day summit that kicked off today in Kabul, organized by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

Ban Ki-moon dispatches senior aide to DR Congo’s troubled eastern region

Voicing concern about the ongoing crisis in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), where tens of thousands of people have been displaced by recent fighting, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today announced that his senior aide will travel to the country for talks with top officials.

UN envoy to return to Myanmar on Saturday

United Nations Special Adviser Ibrahim Gambari is set to arrive in Myanmar on Saturday, his second visit to the South-East Asian nation since authorities used force in responding to a wave of peaceful protests that began in August.

Extending Sudan mission, Security Council urges consolidation of North-South peace

The Security Council today voted to extend the mandate of the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) by six months, urging all parties to fully put into the practice the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) ending a 21-year civil war between north and south Sudan.

Security Council extends UN’s Western Sahara mission through April 2008

The Security Council today extended through next April the mandate of the United Nations mission in Western Sahara (MINURSO), which has been in the Territory since 1991 to monitor the ceasefire between Morocco and the Frente Polisario.

General Assembly urges observance of ‘Olympic Truce’ during Beijing Games

The United Nations General Assembly today urged all countries to observe the Olympic Truce during the 2008 Beijing Games – a move backed by its president, who advocated greater use of sport to promote peace and development.

Low-cost technologies could ensure sanitation for all, says senior UN official

With more than 2.6 billion people – 40 per cent of the world’s population – lacking access to toilets and other sanitation facilities, the head of the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) has urged governments to adopt low-cost technology to ensure adequate sanitation for all.

Almost 88,000 Somalis displaced during weekend violence in Mogadishu – UN

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said today that up to 88,000 people have fled Mogadishu this past weekend due to increased fighting – which is more than have left the Somali capital in the past four months.