Asia Pacific

Secretary-General Ban urges all sides in Bangladesh crisis to ‘refrain from violence’

Warning that the political crisis in Bangladesh has “severely jeopardized the legitimacy” of this month’s planned elections, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today urged all sides to refrain from violence and seek compromise, adding he hopes the army will continue to play a neutral role.

Sri Lanka: 20,000 people uprooted by new Government-separatist fighting, UN reports

More than 20,000 people have fled fighting between the Sri Lankan Government and Tamil separatists in the Indian Ocean island’s eastern costal strip of Vaharai in the past three weeks, but despite reaching relative safety they still they face many problems and an uncertain future, the United Nations refugee agency reported today.

UN calls for the protection of civilians in Sri Lanka as over 20 killed and dozens maimed

Condemning the latest attacks on civilians in strife-torn Sri Lanka, which left more than 20 dead and dozens maimed, the United Nations office on the island today called for their immediate protection and warned of worsening conditions in the east, where thousands of people remain trapped by the fighting between the Government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

UN calls on Afghanistan, Pakistan to end war of words and cooperate in fighting Taliban

A senior United Nations official in Afghanistan today called on the Afghan and Pakistani governments to end their mutual recriminations and cooperate in fighting the Taliban insurgency in the south of the war-torn country, saying it is being fuelled from both sides of the border and urging greater action against the rebellion in Pakistan itself.

Ban Ki-moon calls on Myanmar to release all political prisoners

Welcoming reports that Myanmar recently released dozens of political prisoners, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today called for the freeing of all others, including democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been under house arrest for 10 of the past 16 years.

Secretary-General Ban repeats call for the reinstatement of Fiji’s ‘legitimate authority’

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today called for the reinstatement of Fiji’s “legitimate authority,” following the announcement that the leader of last December’s coup d’état has become Prime Minister of the country.

Indonesia: relief efforts contain effects of flooding, UNICEF reports

Many of the most serious effects of the flooding that killed some 100 people and left over 200,000 in need of urgent assistance in the Indonesian province of Aceh have been brought under control since the start of the year, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reports in its latest update.

UN calls for speedy action in Timor-Leste on commission report into 2006 violence

Strongly backing last year’s inquiry into deadly violence in Timor-Leste, the United Nations today called for speedy action on its recommendations, which include further investigation as well as prosecution of those responsible for the clashes that led to at least 37 deaths and forced 155,000 people – 15 per cent of the population – to flee their homes.

Ban Ki-Moon expresses condolences on death of DPR Korea minister, hopes talks not affected

Offering his condolences today on the death of the Foreign Minister of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed his hope that this would not affect the Six-Party Process aimed at achieving a denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

Sri Lanka: UN calls for warring parties to resume talks after at least 14 more are killed

Following the killing of at least 14 civilians in Sri Lanka today, the United Nations called on the Government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to stop fighting, protect the innocent and resume talks.