Asia Pacific

Most workers in Afghan brick kilns are bonded child labourers – UN-backed survey

A new United Nations-backed survey has found that most workers in Afghanistan’s brick kilns are bonded child labourers, and calls for a strategy that will both provide relief to bonded families and help them escape the cycles of debt, dependence and poverty.

After President resigns in Maldives, Ban voices hope crisis will end

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon voiced hope today that the resignation of the President of the Maldives and the appointment of his deputy as the new leader will help to peacefully end the ongoing political crisis in the Indian Ocean country.

Asia-Pacific nations seek faster response against HIV at UN gathering

Although the Asia-Pacific region has witnessed widespread gains in combating the spread of HIV, experts at a United Nations meeting were told today that the epidemic is still outpacing the region’s efforts against new infections.

Myanmar: UN rights expert urges authorities to remain committed to reforms

Recent reforms in Myanmar have already had a positive impact, the United Nations expert on the human rights situation in the country said today, but warned that serious challenges remain and must be addressed to strengthen the transition to democracy.

Ban calls for more ratifications of global treaty banning nuclear tests

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today urged eight key countries that have not ratified the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) to do so and thus accelerate its entry into force, following the addition of its newest member, Indonesia.

Civilian casualty numbers in Afghanistan rise again, UN reports

The number of civilian casualties resulting from the conflict in Afghanistan has risen for a fifth consecutive year, the United Nations reported today, blaming a change in tactics by the Taliban and other anti-Government forces for the higher death toll.

After ferry sinking in Papua New Guinea, UN agency voices deep sympathy

The head of the United Nations International Maritime Organization (IMO) today expressed deep sympathy to the victims of a ferry sinking off the coast of Papua New Guinea that may have claimed more than 100 lives.

UN-backed court sentences key Khmer Rouge figure to life in prison on appeal

The appeals chamber of the United Nations-backed tribunal in Cambodia trying cases of mass murder and other crimes committed under the Khmer Rouge regime today sentenced the former head of a notorious detention camp to life in prison, upholding an earlier conviction and extending the existing jail term.

As floods continue in Fiji, UN stresses need to boost preventive measures

The United Nations disaster risk reduction agency stressed today the need to boost preventive measures in Fiji, as heavy rains are predicted to occur more frequently in the archipelago nation, which has been ravaged by severe floods over the past week.

UN political team to visit Maldives for talks on democratic transition

A United Nations political team heads to the Maldives next week for talks on how to help support the Indian Ocean archipelago in its transition to democracy.