DR of Congo: UN to increase peacekeepers, shore up peace process in northeast

The United Nations mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) announced today that it would increase the number of UN peacekeepers in the Ituri province, in the volatile northeast of the country.

UN envoy set to launch longer-term humanitarian appeal for Côte d'Ivoire

As sporadic violence and persistent reports of human rights abuses temper hopes that peace may finally be taking root in Côte d'Ivoire, the United Nations humanitarian envoy for the crisis in the country has arrived in Abidjan to launch a new, long-term relief plan.

UNICEF urges Angola to spend on health at launch of measles campaign

As Angola launched a nationwide measles vaccination campaign today to immunize 7 million children within a month, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) urged the government to support the nascent peace process with increased funds for health and education, and the international community to join in helping the war-ruined country.

UN administers $10.5 million project to support Nigerian electoral process

As Nigeria's nearly 61 million registered voters prepare to elect a new President this weekend, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) today said it is administering a $10.5 million effort to help strengthen the country's capacity to run the poll effectively.

Political progress in Central African Republic should quickly lead to elections - Security Council

Acknowledging the political progress thus far in the Central African Republic (CAR), the members of the United Nations Security Council today stressed that it was essential that authorities in Bangui now elaborate a plan for the national dialogue, including a timeframe, and to hold elections as soon as possible.

Security Council reiterates need for 'global approach' to peace in central Africa

In continuing ongoing efforts to strengthen cooperation between the United Nations system and central African countries, members of the Security Council today reaffirmed the importance of a comprehensive, integrated, resolute and concerted approach to the issues of peace, security and development in that region.

UN calls on Liberian Government to protect civilians, ensure safe humanitarian access

A senior United Nations relief official reported today that the violence sweeping much of Liberia has taken a grave twist as armed groups now appear to be targeting some of the most vulnerable people in the war-ravaged country - internally displaced persons (IDPs), other civilians and even humanitarian aid workers.

Burundi: Security Council pays tribute to upcoming political handover

Paying tribute again to the upcoming political transition in Burundi, the United Nations Security Council today underscored the importance of President Pierre Buyoya's commitment to handover office by 1 May, and recommended that all the country's political leaders continue working in the spirit of consensus.

UN agency steps up efforts to repatriate Sierra Leonean refugees from Guinea

The United Nations refugee agency today said it is conducting a campaign to encourage Sierra Leoneans to go back home in an effort to step up the pace of repatriations from Guinea.

General Assembly welcomes certification plan to stem trade in conflict diamonds

In support of international efforts to break the link between the illegal trade of rough diamonds and its fuelling of armed conflict, the United Nations General Assembly today welcomed the decision to implement a global certification scheme for the valuable gems.