Top UN envoy to Somalia praises ‘open and transparent’ election of new President

After a long night of voting the newly expanded Somali parliament elected opposition leader Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed as the new president of the Horn of Africa nation, as the United Nations envoy to the country applauded the “open and transparent” nature of the voting.

UN role restricted to planning joint DR Congo/Rwanda operation against rebels

The top United Nations official to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) stressed today that the world body is only involved in planning and coordinating the joint DRC/Rwanda military offensive targeting ethnic Rwandan Hutu militias.

DR Congo: offensive against Hutu rebels sends thousands fleeing, UN reports

The military operation by the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Rwanda against ethnic Rwandan Hutu militias is heightening tensions in South Kivu province, driving at least 5,000 people from their homes and threatening to impede the repatriation of Congolese refugees from neighbouring Tanzania, the United Nations reported today.

Ban hails unity government deal in Zimbabwe

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today welcomed the agreement reached between the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), led by Morgan Tsvangirai, and President Robert Mugabe''s ruling Zanu-PF to form a government of national unity in Zimbabwe.

Chad sees new influx of refugees from Central African Republic, UN says

More than 4,500 refugees from the northern Central African Republic (CAR), fearing attacks from armed groups and fighting between Government forces and rebels, have recently arrived in south-eastern Chad, the United Nations refugee agency said today.

Somali capital still volatile but displaced beginning to return – UN agency

The United Nations refugee agency said today there are signs that, for the first time in two years, Somalis displaced by fighting in Mogadishu are beginning to return to their devastated neighbourhoods, but warned that the situation in the capital remains very volatile.

Rwanda: UN-backed unit charged with pushing gender equality to fore

Rwanda has appointed three officials to a new government body charged with putting gender equality at the forefront of Government planning and ensuring that necessary data is readily available to inform policy decisions, the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) said today.

Regional States sign pact to fight piracy off Somali coast – UN

Indian Ocean and Red Sea countries have pledged to cooperate in seizing, investigating and prosecuting pirates off the coast of war-ravaged Somalia in a stepped-up campaign to curb a scourge that has wrought havoc with international shipping, including United Nations delivery of emergency food aid.

Joint UN, African Union mediator for Darfur calls for end to renewed clashes

The United Nations and African Union (AU) joint chief mediator for the peace process in Sudan’s strife-torn Darfur region today expressed grave concern over renewed combat in the southern part of the vast region, saying it undermines hopes for a peaceful settlement of the conflict.

Madagascar: Ban calls on Government to protect civilians in face of deadly unrest

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today offered United Nations support to help foster reconciliation in Madagascar where serious unrest has led to the death of dozens of people.