Asia Pacific

Mangrove forest in Bangladesh devastated by recent cyclone – UN expert team

About 40 per cent of the Sundarbans, Bangladesh’s renowned mangrove forest, was seriously damaged by the deadly cyclone that struck the delta nation last month, according to a team of experts from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) that has just visited the area.

International community’s patience with Myanmar ‘running out’ – Ban Ki-moon

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today urged Myanmar’s authorities to step up their efforts towards democratization and the full respect of human rights, noting that the international community’s patience with the troubled South-East Asian nation is wearing thin.

Preventive diplomacy essential, Ban Ki-moon tells launch of UN regional centre

Preventive diplomacy is not an option but a necessity, given the gravity of so many situations worldwide, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today, launching the United Nations Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia.

UN’s top rights chief speaks out against execution of a minor in Iran

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has spoken out against the execution of a minor in Iran, calling on the Tehran Government to respect the international consensus against meting out capital punishment to juvenile offenders.

UN regional centre for preventive diplomacy in Central Asia set to open

The United Nations Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia will be inaugurated on Monday in an initiative by the world body to help the region’s countries respond more proactively to cross-border challenges and threats before they can become costlier and more difficult to control.

DPR Korea: independent panel making headway into reviewing UNDP activities

An independent panel announced today that it is making headway reviewing allegations about the activities of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) that are not being considered by an existing probe by the UN Board of Auditors.

Death toll in Myanmar crackdown higher than Government figures – UN expert

An independent United Nations human rights expert says that at least 31 people died during the crackdown by Myanmar authorities on peaceful protesters a few months ago – 16 more than had been acknowledged by the Government.

Top UN human rights official dismayed by execution of three Japanese prisoners

The top United Nations human rights official today deplored the execution of three prisoners – including one aged over 75 – in Osaka, Japan, and appealed to the East Asian nation to reassess its approach to the death penalty.

Killing of Afghan aid worker sparks outrage from UN agency chief

The head of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has spoken out against the killing of a humanitarian worker in southern Afghanistan, gunned down while delivering vital food aid in one of the most dangerous parts of the violence-ridden nation.

Timor-Leste faces serious challenges despite recent gains, Security Council told

While Timor-Leste has recovered well from the violent crisis that engulfed it last year, it continues to grapple with a host of challenges including the fate of about 100,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) and widespread poverty, the head of a recent United Nations Security Council mission to the tiny nation said today.