Asia Pacific

DPR Korea willing to accept emergency aid for flood victims, says UN food agency

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) has agreed to accept emergency rations to help the victims of last month’s devastating floods and landslides in the central and southern regions, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced today.

UN’s Timor-Leste mission extended briefly while Council mulls future options

As the Security Council weighs requests from Secretary-General Kofi Annan and the Government of Timor-Leste to create a new, expanded United Nations mission in the South-East Asian country, the 15-member body today briefly extended the current mission there.

UNICEF working to help quake-affected school children in Tajikistan

With thousands of children returning to school in Tajikistan in the first week of September as usual, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is working to ensure that those living in areas hit by a recent earthquake will be able to learn despite the devastation wrought by the disaster.

UN opens new offices in Afghanistan’s troubled southern region

The United Nations Assistance Mission to Afghanistan (UNAMA) has opened a new regional office in Qalat, Zabul, in the south of the country, where a growing insurgency threatens stability, as part of its efforts to work with Afghans to boost development and monitor human rights.

Reported execution of Afghan prompts UN envoy to take stand against death penalty

The top United Nations envoy in Afghanistan today condemned the death penalty as reports emerged that Iranian authorities recently executed an Afghan national living in Iran.

Timor-Leste: UN Special Representative chairs election meeting

As a first step toward helping Timor-Leste hold free and fair elections next year, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative in that country today convened a meeting of the major political parties to negotiate a new law that would govern those elections.

Bird flu virus becoming endemic in parts of Asia – UN

Laboratory results show that a recent wave of bird flu in poultry in Thailand and Laos was the result of both old and new strains of the H5N1 virus, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said today, calling for vigorous implementation of control measures to prevent further spread of the disease.

As drought and floods strike different Afghan regions, UN agencies rush to help

The United Nations humanitarian arm has stepped in to assist Afghanistan, where the population is suffering on two fronts – drought is devastating large swathes of the country and recent floods have caused damage to two provinces.

UN agency praises Kazakh decision not to extradite refugee to Uzbekistan

The United Nations refugee agency today warmly welcomed a decision by Kazakhstan’s authorities not to extradite an Uzbek refugee, despite a request from Uzbekistan, but instead to hand him over to the UN for immediate permanent resettlement with his family.

More UN officials deplore violence in Sri Lanka as toll on children rises

Reacting to a bombing in Sri Lanka on Monday that reportedly killed dozens of children and wounded many more, two senior United Nations officials added their voices to growing international calls for the Government and separatist rebels to lay down their arms and resume talks.