UN and South Sudan in joint effort to reduce maternal mortality

A joint initiative of the United Nations and South Sudan is aiming to reduce maternal mortality by deploying midwives throughout the country, providing locals with the necessary skills to safely deliver babies, and improving the health facilities available to the wider population.

Security Council welcomes planned regional anti-piracy strategy in Gulf of Guinea

The Security Council today condemned all acts of maritime piracy and armed robbery at sea in West Africa’s Gulf of Guinea and welcomed the intention by States in the region to convene a summit to consider a comprehensive response to the menace.

Current efforts to stem piracy off Somali coast must be strengthened – UN official

It is vital that Member States strengthen efforts to tackle piracy off the Somali coast, a senior United Nations official stressed today, adding that current initiatives, while laudable, are insufficient.

Darfur: New chief of UN peacekeeping makes first visit to field operation

The new head of United Nations peacekeeping today paid his first visit to one of the 16 field operations worldwide, choosing the largest -- the joint African Union-UN mission (UNAMID) in the troubled Sudanese region of Darfur.

As South Sudan joins UNESCO, major challenges in education lie ahead

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) today welcomed the recently independent country of South Sudan -- which has some of the worst indicators for education levels in the world -- as its newest Member State.

Aerial bombings driving more refugees from Sudan’s Blue Nile into Ethiopia – UN

Aerial bombings in Sudan’s Blue Nile state are driving a new wave of refugees into Ethiopia, with nearly 2,000 arriving in the last four days alone, the United Nations refugee agency reported today.

Deadly outbreak of kala-azar disease continues in South Sudan, UN agency says

At least 720 people have died in South Sudan from a protracted outbreak of visceral leishmaniasis, a parasitic disease, and the number of deaths could be much higher, the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) reported today.

ICC Prosecutor in contact with Qadhafi’s son on possible surrender

The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) said today his office is in indirect contact with Saif al-Islam Qadhafi, son of the former Libyan leader, on his possible surrender to face charges for crimes against humanity.

DR Congo: UN envoy concerned over fatal shooting as poll campaign begins

The head of the United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) today voiced deep concern over reports that one person was shot dead and three others wounded during a demonstration in the south-central province of Kasai Oriental to mark the beginning of campaigning for next month’s general elections.

Guinea-Bissau: UN official calls for multilateral cooperation to combat organized crime

Regional and global partnerships are urgently needed to combat organized crime in Guinea-Bissau and other countries in West Africa affected by the illegal drug trade, a United Nations official has said, calling for a more integrated approach in the region.