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Europe not deluged by ‘bogus’ asylum-seekers, new UN statistics show

Responding to what it described as “somewhat frenzied” political debate in a number of European countries concerning migrants, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) today issued new statistics showing a sharp drop in the number of people seeking asylum on the continent.

UN hands over police duties and public broadcasting services to East Timor

As the United Nations today handed over key police duties and public broadcasting services to the authorities in East Timor, UN officials hailed these steps as evidence of progress in the world’s newest country.

UN-backed study finds cheap drug can prevent deaths among pregnant women

An inexpensive drug can halve the risk of life-threatening convulsions and the risk of death in pregnant women with problems of high blood pressure, according to the findings of a major international clinical trial backed by the United Nations and published today in The Lancet.

Next round of UN-Iraq talks set for 4-5 July in Vienna

The next round of talks between Secretary-General Kofi Annan and senior representatives of the Government of Iraq will be held on 4 and 5 July at the United Nations offices in Vienna, a spokesman for the world body announced today.

New UN humanitarian coordinator in Iraq appointed

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today appointed Ramiro Armando de Oliveira Lopes da Silva of Portugal as the new United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator in Iraq.

Annan hails EU ratification of Kyoto treaty on global warming

As 15 countries of the European Union (EU) and the European Commission today ratified the Kyoto Protocol - a binding international treaty designed to combat global warming - Secretary-General Kofi Annan hailed the move as a welcome development and called on other nations to follow suit.

Annan pays tribute to late Swedish diplomat Gunnar Jarring, veteran of UN affairs

The United Nations Secretary-General, Kofi Annan, today paid tribute to Gunnar Jarring, a distinguished Swedish diplomat and veteran of UN affairs who died on Thursday at the age of 94.

Effort under way to safeguard Afghanistan's cultural heritage, UNESCO says

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has announced plans to coordinate an international effort aimed at safeguarding Afghanistan's cultural heritage.

Annan names close aide to head UN's communications department

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today confirmed Shashi Tharoor - a close aide with extensive experience in communications, peacekeeping and troubleshooting - as the head of the Department of Public Information, a key branch of the UN Secretariat responsible for informing the public and the media about the work of the world body.

At Bali talks, negotiators hammer out text for adoption at Johannesburg summit

Negotiators meeting in Bali, Indonesia, today reported progress in their efforts to hammer out draft final documents for adoption by the World Summit for Sustainable Development, which will convene this August in Johannesburg.