DR Congo: amid alleged army atrocities, UN cites civilian protection as top priority

The top priority for the United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is the protection of civilians from abuse, be it from the Government forces that it is mandated to support or armed rebel groups, a senior official said today.

Young people in Chadian refugee camps need hope for better future, says UN official

The top humanitarian official in Chad called for urgent attention to be paid to providing a better life for young men and women languishing in camps for refugees and displaced persons, warning that the alternatives for them would be prostitution or violence.

Djibouti forcibly repatriates 40 Somali asylum-seekers, UN reports

The United Nations refugee agency has voiced regret at Djibouti’s forced repatriation of 40 Somali asylum-seekers, including 13 women and children, who were rescued by a Dutch ship in the Red Sea last month.

Côte d’Ivoire: UN begins transporting provisional voters’ list for upcoming polls

The United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) today began transporting the provisional voters’ list to polling stations around the country as part of the latest phase of preparations for the upcoming presidential elections.

Millions of poor across Africa set to suffer deepening food crisis, warns UN report

Despite good global cereal harvests this year, millions of people in dozens of poor countries are in desperate need of emergency humanitarian aid due to stubbornly high food prices, the United Nations agricultural agency warned in a report released today.

Number of civilians escaping tribal violence in DR Congo on the rise – UN

The number of civilians fleeing tribal violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) into neighbouring Republic of Congo since last week has topped 21,800, the United Nations refugee agency reported today.

Flooding drives Somalis from their homes amid aid funding shortfall, warns UN

Around 16,000 Somalis have been forced from their homes by severe flooding in the south of the strife-torn country, the United Nations humanitarian arm said today, while underscoring that a funding shortfall is hampering relief efforts.

UNICEF chief focuses on child health, climate change on visit to Mali

The head of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said greater attention should be paid to the negative impact of climate change on the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people, especially children, as she toured the West African nation of Mali.

UN receives provisional voters’ list for much delayed Ivorian presidential poll

Côte d’Ivoire’s independent electoral commission today handed over a provisional voters’ list to the top United Nations envoy there, a step forward towards holding the much-delayed presidential poll in the West African country, split by civil war in 2002 into a Government-ruled south and a rebel-controlled north.

Home furnishings giant IKEA raises money for UNICEF

More than 500,000 children, mainly in Africa, are expected to benefit from home furnishing and accessories firm IKEA’s Holiday season fundraising campaign, which will donate one euro for every soft toy sold to the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the non-governmental organization (NGO) Save the Children.