Asia Pacific

Afghan development pact working well but international support still needed – UN

A multi-billion dollar blueprint for partnership between the Government of Afghanistan and the international community to bolster security, economic development and counter-narcotics efforts has achieved solid progress since its adoption in January, but continued global support is needed to consolidate gains, an expert panel including the United Nations said today.

In Nepal, UN delegation holds talks with Communist Party leaders

A high-level United Nations team visiting Nepal to explore UN support for the country’s peace process today met senior leaders from the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) and welcomed news that they will extend their ceasefire for another three months.

More than $15 million needed to help Azerbaijan’s displaced – UN food agency chief

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) will run out of supplies in a month for more than 130,000 Azerbaijanis displaced by the conflict with neighbouring Armenia over the disputed region of Nagorny-Karabakh unless it receives an urgent injection of funds, the agency said today.

Fighting to curb drugs from Afghanistan, UN agency to help train officers in Central Asia

In the battle against the heroin trade from Afghanistan, which produces almost all the world’s supply, the United Nations drug agency is joining an international effort to train Afghan and Central Asian enforcement officers, as around one fifth of the total output of the illicit narcotic is smuggled through these neighbouring five republics to Russia and elsewhere in Europe.

In Sri Lanka, UN refugee chief calls on all sides to allow displaced to return home

Sri Lanka’s Government and separatist Tamil Tigers should resume peace talks and create the conditions necessary for more than 300,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) to return home because they have been enduring a conflict that has lasted over 20 years, the head of the United Nations refugee agency said while visiting the country.

Mongolian sumo star becomes UNESCO Artist for Peace

The professional sumo wrestler known as Hakuho has become the first Mongolian to be designated an Artist for Peace by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), in recognition of his work helping young people in East Asia.<

Nepal: UN team arrives to forge ‘common understanding’ on peace process role

A high-level United Nations team has arrived in Nepal aiming to forge a “common understanding” about the scope and nature of a UN role in the peace process in the strife-torn Himalayan kingdom, with the head of the mission stressing it will take into account views from all sectors of society.

In Central Asia, UN-backed water project paves the way for further cooperation

Water relations in Central Asia take a significant step forward today with the inauguration of the United Nations-supported Chu-Talas Rivers Commission involving Kazakhstan and landlocked Kyrgyzstan, with the world body saying the agreement provides a model for cooperation for other trans-boundary river basins in the region.

Afghanistan: Security Council voices fear on violence as UN envoy talks of insurgency

Expressing concern over the worsening violence in Afghanistan, the Security Council today reaffirmed its support for the Government and the armed forces as they battle what the top United Nations envoy to the impoverished nation called an “insurgency” that seeks to restore life under the Taliban.

UN refugee chief visits Sri Lanka to discuss fate of 300,000 displaced by conflict

The head of the United Nations refugee agency begins a three-day mission to war-ravaged Sri Lanka today where he plans to meet representatives of the more than 300,000 people displaced by the conflict between the Government and the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).