Asia Pacific

Afghanistan: Annan deplores assassination of Ahmad Shah Massoud

Secretary-General Kofi Annan today said he was saddened at the assassination of Commander Ahmad Shah Massoud, the Vice President and Defence Minister of the Islamic State of Afghanistan.

Afghan civilians fleeing large cities, UN refugee agency reports

The United High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) today reported that civilians in Afghanistan were fleeing the country's large cities, with some of the displaced headed to small villages and others aiming to cross borders with Iran and Pakistan.

East Timor: President of pro-independence party elected as Assembly Speaker

In its first formal session today, East Timor's newly elected Constituent Assembly voted with an overwhelming majority for Fretilin President Franscico Guterres as its Speaker, according to the United Nations Transitional Administration in the territory (UNTAET).

Myanmar: UN agency set to assess country's actions on forced labour

A high-level team from the United Nations International Labour Organization (ILO) left for Myanmar today for a three-week assessment of the Government's actions concerning forced labour.

Millions of Afghan women and children in dire need of assistance: UN

The Office of the United Nations Coordinator for Afghanistan today said the humanitarian situation in the country was dramatic, with millions of civilians - mostly women and children - "too poor or unable to move" from their villages because of the armed conflict that rages over half of the territory.

Over 600 East Timorese refugees return from West Timor, UN mission reports

More than 600 East Timorese refugees returned to their homeland from camps in Indonesian West Timor today in a process facilitated by a Timorese independence leader and former militia leaders, the United Nations administration in the territory said in a statement.

Afghanistan: UN completes relocation of international staff

The United Nations today completed the temporary relocation of 75 international staff from Afghanistan, according to a UN spokesman in New York.

Afghanistan: UN staff temporarily relocated

The United Nations announced today that it would temporarily relocate scores of its aid workers from Afghanistan "due to circumstances prevailing internationally."

East Timorese leadership holds first meeting with Indonesian President

East Timorese leaders met today in Jakarta with Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri for the first time since she took office, the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) said on Wednesday.

Hailing elections in East Timor, Council urges cooperation towards statehood

The United Nations Security Council today welcomed the 30 August elections for East Timor's first Constituent Assembly and urged all parties to work together to draft a constitution that reflects the will of the East Timorese people.