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Bangladesh’s first ever computerized voter list completed with UN backing

As Bangladesh gears up for its first parliamentary elections in seven years on 29 December, the first ever computerized photo voter list in the south Asian country containing pictures of more than 80 million people is now complete after taking 11 months to compile with United Nations help.

UN to help Fiji hold parliamentary elections

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has agreed to work with the Commonwealth to help Fiji's interim Government and other major political forces in the Pacific archipelago hammer out the terms and date of parliamentary elections needed to restore democracy there.

UN expert urges Sri Lanka to better protect civilians displaced by conflict

An independent United Nations human rights expert has called on Sri Lanka to significantly improve access for more humanitarian relief and personnel to reach hundreds of thousands of people displaced in the northern Vanni region by the ongoing conflict between the Government and Tamil separatists.

Concerted global action needed to make schools safe from collapse, UN says

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) called today for more concerted action to make school buildings around the world safe following the collapse of thousands of schools this year, many of them deadly, due to earthquakes, cyclones and other causes.

HIV-positive youth in Namibia, Tanzania need greater support from schools – UN

Children and young people living with HIV in Namibia and Tanzania are not getting the kind of moral support they need to further their education, according to the first United Nations report commissioned specifically on the learning needs of this vulnerable group.

UN helping Philippines tackle first-ever Ebola outbreak in pigs

The Philippine Government has asked the United Nations for help in tackling what appears to be the first publicly reported outbreak of the deadly Ebola-Reston virus in pigs, which has attacked hog farms in the South-East Asian nation.

Guinea: Ban calls for peaceful, democratic power transfer after President’s death

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today extended his condolences on the passing of General Lansana Conté of Guinea, and stressed the need for a peaceful, democratic and constitutional transfer of power, following a reported coup attempt in the West African nation just hours after the President’s death.

UN peacekeepers in DR Congo on alert amid signs of new rebel build-up

The United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has put bases in war-ravaged North Kivu province on high alert and is conducting additional patrols amid increasing concern at “clear evidence” of a build-up by mainly Tutsi rebels in key areas.

Darfur: military component of UN-African Union force reaches over 60 per cent

The joint African Union-United Nations mission in the strife-torn Darfur region of Sudan received an additional 45 troops today, bringing the number of military staff to 12,242 – just over 60 per cent of the total military component of the force. However, this is still far short of the 26,000 uniformed personnel, including police, expected at full deployment.

Zimbabwe’s cholera epidemic still not under control, UN reports

The worst cholera epidemic ever recorded in Zimbabwe is still not under control after infecting nearly 24,000 people, with the death toll approaching 1,200, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reported today.