Asia Pacific

Disaster risk awareness key to preventing casualties, says UN ambassador

Better disaster risk preparations may have helped avert casualties when tropical storm Washi slammed into the Philippines this month, a United Nations champion for disaster risk reduction said today.

Philippines: UN grant enables agencies to give help to storm survivors

A $3 million allocation from the United Nations relief fund has enabled agencies to provide initial assistance to survivors of the tropical storm that devastated parts of the Philippines 11 days ago, as the death toll rose to nearly 1,250, the UN humanitarian office reported today.

UN refugee agency distributes winter supplies to needy Afghan families

The United Nations refugee agency today began distributing urgently needed winter supplies to more than 200,000 displaced people in Afghanistan as night-time temperatures have plummeted to below freezing across the Asian country.

Philippines: UN targets children’s needs in areas hit by deadly tropical storm

As the death toll in the Philippines from the impact of tropical storm Washi passes 1,100, the United Nations continues to both rush aid to storm-affected areas and stress the need to focus renewed attention on the thousands of children hit by the disaster.

China: UN deeply concerned by conviction of human rights activist

The United Nations human rights chief voiced today her deep concern about the verdict and extremely harsh sentencing in the trial of leading activist Chen Wei, adding that it represents a serious setback for the protection and promotion of human rights in China.

UN experts denounce ongoing detention of Chinese human rights lawyer

A group of independent United Nations experts today denounced the continued secret detention of Chinese human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng, who was arrested in 2006 for allegedly spotlighting abuses in his country.

Philippines: UN tackling maternal health issues in areas affected by tropical storm

The needs of more than 12,000 pregnant and lactating women in areas affected by tropical storm Washi in southern Philippines are the main focus of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), which said today it is mobilizing funds and supplies to provide medical services.

Kyrgyzstan: UN official urges judges to respect defendants’ civil rights

Judges in Kyrgyzstan must ensure that the civil rights of defendants are protected, a top United Nations official stressed today, after the Supreme Court upheld the conviction and life sentence of an activist who reported being tortured in detention and whose right to a fair trial was violated.

Philippines: UN and partners appeal for additional $28 million to help storm victims

The United Nations and its humanitarian partners are seeking an additional $28.6 million to what was already requested earlier this month to support victims of the Sendong tropical storm in southern Philippines.

Top UN aid official calls for scaling up of humanitarian efforts in Philippines

The United Nations relief chief called today on countries and international organizations to scale up humanitarian efforts in the Philippines, which was ravaged by a storm last weekend, leaving almost half a million people in need of assistance.