Asia Pacific

Time running out to prevent ‘worst case scenario’ arising in Afghanistan

With all the major indicators for Afghanistan’s security and development looking “negative or stagnant” as international troops withdraw, the threats that lie ahead cannot be overstated, the top UN official in the country told the Security Council on Tuesday. 

Amidst COVID surge, Asia-Pacific region needs ‘immediate and stronger support’ 

With the coronavirus still raging in many parts of the world, the UN’s refugee agency, UNHCR, warned on Tuesday of vaccine shortages, especially in the Asia-Pacific region, and urged “immediate and stronger support” for the global COVAX initiative for equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines, “including for refugees and asylum-seekers”. 

UN chief appeals for dialogue in Samoa amid prime ministerial stand-off

The UN has called for dialogue in Samoa, where the first woman elected as Prime Minister was locked out of Parliament on Monday amid a bitter power struggle with the country’s long-standing leader.

Afghanistan: Top UN officials strongly condemn ‘heinous’ attack on girls school 

Two senior UN officials on Wednesday, condemned in the strongest terms, a terrorist attack targeting girls and their families outside a high school in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan. 

What can the UN do to support India through its deadly COVID-19 surge?

The UN is at the forefront of efforts to help India extricate itself from the almost unimaginable scale of suffering its citizens are undergoing, as a result of a devastating wave of COVID-19 infections. Earlier this week, UN News spoke to the country chiefs based in India, for the World Health Organization (WHO) and the UN Children’s Fund, to get their take on the crisis. Here are some key excerpts from the interviews.

South Asia: ‘Real possibility’ health systems will be strained to a breaking point, UNICEF warns

Impacts of the deadly new surge in COVID-19 cases across South Asia are unlike anything the region has seen before, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has said, warning of a “real possibility” that health systems there will be strained to a breaking point, leading to even more loss of life. 

UN atomic energy agency to work with Japan on Fukushima water disposal

The International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA, said on Tuesday that it will work closely with Japan which is preparing to release a million tonnes of treated seawater used to cool the stricken Fukushima nuclear power plant.

India donates 200,000 vaccines to protect UN blue helmets against COVID

India shipped out 200,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines on Saturday to inoculate UN blue helmets serving in peacekeeping missions.

Amidst ‘heightened intensity’ actions toward peace must be ‘in the best interests’ of Afghans

Amidst a period of “heightened intensity”, the UN Special Representative told the Security Council on Tuesday that the killing, displacement and suffering of the Afghan people “must end now”. 

UN teams assisting tens of thousands of refugees, after massive fire rips through camp in Bangladesh

United Nations humanitarian personnel are on the ground evacuating tens of thousands of Rohingya refugees, after a devastating fire tore through the Kutupalong camp, in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, the world’s largest refugee camp.