Asia Pacific

Despite new bird flu cases, no evidence so far of easy spread in humans – UN

Despite three more human cases of bird flu in Viet Nam, bringing the total there since mid-December to 28, there is currently no evidence that the virus is spreading easily from person to person, according to the United Nations health agency’s latest update on a disease that in a worst-case scenario could kill tens of millions people worldwide.

UN steps up relief operations to quake-ravaged Indonesian islands

United Nations agencies stepped up relief operations today on the Indonesian islands ravaged by Monday night's earthquake, with a dedicated fleet of aircraft and boats delivering emergency aid and evacuating the critically injured. Water purification, food and logistics are among the current priorities.

UN mission in Bougainville scheduled to end on 30 June, after elections

With elections for the first autonomous government in the Papua New Guinea province of Bougainville scheduled for late May and early June, the United Nations mission there plans to fold its tent at the end of June, a report to the Security Council says.

Without fresh pledges, UN will have to halt food aid for millions in DPR of Korea

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) will have to halt distribution to millions of hungry people in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) within weeks unless fresh pledges are made soon.

Delegates at UN meeting pledge green-friendly approach to development in Asia and the Pacific

Ministers and senior officials from 52 Asian and Pacific countries meeting under United Nations auspices today pledged to alter current patterns of production, consumption and distribution to promote cleaner, environmentally sustainable growth as they fight to eradicate poverty.

UN health agency offers aid to DPR of Korea in bird flu epidemic

The United Nations health agency has offered assistance to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) in preparing a response to an epidemic of bird flu among chickens.

UN agencies swing into action with relief missions after Indonesian quake

United Nations agencies sprang into action today in Indonesia after last night’s undersea earthquake, sending observation helicopters and boats with relief supplies to islands off the coast of Sumatra, where preliminary reports described the situation as serious with many injured and dead and people buried under tons of rubble.

Ministers at UN-backed Asia-Pacific meeting seek ‘green-friendly’ development

Ministers from Asia and the Pacific opened a two-day meeting under United Nations auspices today in Seoul, Republic of Korea, to draw up a strategy to enhance development without hurting the environment.

Afghan opium cultivation dropping, according to preliminary UN survey

Farmers in Afghanistan, which accounts for 87 per cent of the world's opium and heroin products, are growing fewer opium poppies this year than last and overall output is expected to drop for the first time since 2001, according to the latest United Nations survey released ahead of a detailed annual report in the autumn.

UN peacekeeping capabilities stretched to capacity, Annan says

The demands for multi-faceted United Nations peacekeeping today have stretched the world body's resources "to the limit of our capacity," UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said today in a renewed call for strategic reserves and on-call regional resources at a conference on peacekeeping and nation-building.