Asia Pacific

With UN help, parliamentarians’ resource centre for women opens in Afghanistan

A new resource centre aimed at helping women Members of Parliament in Afghanistan to become strong political leaders and gain the knowledge they need to help shape the country’s future has opened thanks to support from the United Nations.

Afghanistan: UN expert voices outrage as number of attacks on Afghan schools leaps

The number of attacks by terrorist groups against Afghan schools during the first half of this year was almost three times the level for the whole of 2005, prompting a United Nations expert on the right to education to express his “profound condemnation” and to voice concern that girls are suffering the most from the terrorists’ campaign.

UN agency fears for the safety of Uzbek refugees after Kyrgyzstan sends them back

Expressing shock at Kyrgyzstan’s extradition of four Uzbek refugees and one asylum seeker back to Uzbekistan, the United Nations refugee agency said today it feared for their safety, stressed that the forced return violated the 1951 Refugee Convention and called on the Uzbek authorities to grant humanitarian access to the deportees.

UNESCO chief condemns killing of Chinese reporter beaten by police officer

Continuing his campaign to spotlight the deplorable killing of journalists worldwide, the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) today condemned the beating death of a Chinese reporter by a police officer.

Nepal’s Government and Maoists request UN involvement to end 10 years of conflict

The United Nations received separate requests today from the Government of Nepal and the country’s Maoists calling for wide-ranging UN assistance, including ceasefire and human rights monitoring, in a peace process that aims to end 10 years of conflict which has killed 15,000 people in the Himalayan kingdom.

UN refugee agency steps up aid to Sri Lankans displaced by recent fighting

Following an upsurge of violence in Sri Lanka, the United Nations refugee agency has stepped up its efforts to provide assistance to victims of the conflict between the Government and Tamil separatists, but aid workers are still unable to reach thousands of others in need of help.

UN joins forces with Asian institutions to launch environment initiative

Reduce, reuse and recycle are the watchwords of a new initiative announced today by the United Nations and key Asian institutions aimed at promoting the sustainable use of natural resources and environmental efficiency.

Afghanistan: UN mission will expand its presence in southern part of country

With Afghanistan facing a growing insurgency in its southern and southeastern provinces, the top United Nations envoy to that country today announced that the UN mission planned to step up its efforts there.

Condemning execution-style killings of aid workers in Sri Lanka, UN urges probe

The United Nations today strongly condemned the execution-style killings of 15 aid workers from French organization Action against Hunger in northeastern Sri Lanka, calling on the authorities to apprehend those responsible and urging an immediate cessation of hostilities between Tamil separatists and the Government on the strife-torn island.

Attacks on schools in Afghanistan could erode fragile progress – UNICEF

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warned today that schools in Afghanistan are the targets of increasingly dramatic attacks and called on all parties not to target any students, teachers or educational institutions.