Narrow window of opportunity opens to avert potential Africa locust plague - UN

The period between now and the end of February is crucial for a well coordinated locust control campaign to protect crops in North Africa and reduce the risk of swarms reinvading sub-Saharan countries next summer in the worst upsurge of the scourge in 15 years, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said today.

UN, partners seek $1.5 billion in urgent aid for war-torn Sudan for 2005

The United Nations and its partners in Sudan today appealed for $1.5 billion in urgent aid for 2005, more than double this year’s amount, including $600 million for life-saving and sustaining activities in the strife-torn western Darfur region, which the international organization has called the world’s current worst humanitarian crisis.

Renewed violence in eastern DR of Congo threatens relief operations - UN

The targeting of humanitarian organizations in the northeast of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) by armed militias, including violent attacks and looting, could cause serious disruption of relief operations, according to the latest update by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

Security Council mission both heartened and wary on peace prospects for Central Africa

The United Nations Security Council mission to Central Africa has returned home heartened by the progress made in efforts to bring peace to the war-torn Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Burundi, but fully aware of the considerable difficulties on the road ahead, its leader said today.

Additional troops from India, Pakistan to bolster UN peacekeeping force in DR of Congo

Thousands of soldiers from India and Pakistan are heading to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to bolster the United Nations peacekeeping operation there.

Tensions ease in latest Côte d’Ivoire violence, some refugees return – UN

The situation in Côte d’Ivoire was reported calm and small numbers of Ivorian refugees have been returning home from neighbouring Liberia as tensions eased in the West African country following an upsurge in fighting between the rebels and the Government earlier this month, the United Nations mission said today.

Latest fighting has subsided in most areas of Darfur, UN mission in Sudan says

After a week of considerable insecurity, fighting has subsided in most locations in Sudan where 300,000 displaced people have been cut off from all aid by the latest violence, the United Nations mission in Africa’s largest country reported today.

Secretary-General voices hope for access to safe drinking water for all

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today voiced his hope to an international meeting on water, sanitation and hygiene that one day the world will no longer have to face the dire consequences of inadequate access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation.

Over 100,000 Liberians have turned in weapons to UN

Over 100,000 Liberians have turned in guns, ammunition, rocket propelled grenades and other weapons to the United Nations peacekeeping force in their country, the head of the mission said today.

Darfur: 300,000 displaced persons cut off from all aid following rebel attack

The United Nations emergency feeding agency said today that the security situation in western Sudan’s Darfur region was deteriorating rapidly with 300,000 displaced people cut off from all aid following a rebel attack earlier this week in breach of ceasefire accords signed with the government.