Asia Pacific

Afghanistan: maternal health factors improve, but high death rate continues – UN report

Despite a sharp increase in the number of midwives, health facilities, female health workers and educated girls in Afghanistan, the strife-beset country still has the world’s second highest maternal mortality rate, United Nations officials said today.

UN rushing aid to hundreds of thousands of civilians trapped in Sri Lanka fighting

The United Nations and other aid agencies are working to urgently provide humanitarian aid to some 250,000 civilians trapped in areas of northern Sri Lanka where fighting continues between Government forces and the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

China to ring in New Year with UN-backed anti-tobacco campaign

The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) is helping China – home of some 350 million smokers – celebrate the New Year through a campaign seeking to bring an end to the tradition of giving cigarettes as gifts.

UN explores closer ties between Afghanistan, Tajikistan

The top United Nations to Afghanistan has been in neighbouring Tajikistan to explore further cooperation between the two nations.

Citing increasing attacks, UNICEF calls for increased protection of Pakistani schools

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) today voiced its concern about increasing numbers of attacks on school buildings in north-western Pakistan, and called for greater efforts to protect what are supposed to be safe spaces for children.

Lack of funding prevents UN from helping most vulnerable in Kyrgyzstan

Just over 10 per cent of a United Nations appeal to help 800,000 of the most vulnerable people in Kyrgyzstan, which is in need of back-up power supplies and food, has been funded, the world body’s humanitarian office announced today.

Security Council extends UN presence in Nepal for further six months

The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) for a further six months, and endorsed Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s proposals for a phased, gradual drawdown and withdrawal of the world body’s staff.

Australians to highlight carbon neutrality on national day – UN

For some of Australia’s best-known cities, companies and organizations that are part of a United Nations low-carbon initiative, this year’s Australia Day will be celebrated, not by barbecues or beach parties, but by going ‘green.’

Sri Lanka: UN calls on Tamil rebels to ensure free passage for world body’s staff

The United Nations has issued its strongest possible protest to the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) for refusing to allow the world body’s national staff and dependents who were travelling with a UN aid convoy to return from Sri Lanka’s northern Vanni area.

Nepal: UN worried over risk to victim, others after conviction in domestic abuse case

The United Nations human rights office has urged Nepalese authorities to ensure the safety of the wife and others involved in a domestic violence case, who have reportedly received threats after the victim’s husband was convicted of trying to kill her by setting her on fire.