Asia Pacific

New citizenship law in India ‘fundamentally discriminatory’: UN human rights office

A new law in India which expedites citizenship for certain religious minorities has been criticized by the UN human rights office for being “fundamentally discriminatory in nature.” 

North Korea missile tests ‘deeply troubling’: senior UN official

Recent developments concerning North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programmes are “deeply troubling”, the UN’s Assistant Secretary-General for the Middle East, Asia and the Pacific said on Wednesday, briefed the Security Council.

Samoa measles outbreak claims 70 lives, majority are children under five

Seventy people have now died from Samoa’s measles outbreak, UN humanitarians confirmed on Tuesday, as the organization released emergency funding to help the authorities step up efforts to eradicate the preventable disease.

Aung San Suu Kyi appears at ICJ as UN rights expert urges greater protection for Myanmar activists

Authorities in Myanmar and social media companies are being urged to take greater action to protect activists in the south-east Asian country who are fighting for justice and accountability for crimes committed against the minority Rohingya population in 2016 and 2017. 

UN team aids Samoa response to deadly measles epidemic

UN teams are on the ground in Samoa as the country combats a deadly measles epidemic. So far, there have been more than 4,200 cases and 62 deaths, mainly babies, prompting authorities to declare a state of emergency on 15 November and launch a mass vaccination campaign five days later.

FROM THE FIELD: India’s plastic waste revolution

The recycling of plastic waste in India is boosting the incomes of impoverished women and helping build roads and fire cement furnaces, thanks to support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). 

One-third of Afghans need urgent humanitarian aid, millions suffer ‘acute food insecurity’

Over the last three months (August to October 2019), around one-third of the Afghan population required urgent humanitarian action, according to the latest Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) Alert, released on Monday, which declares that some 10.23 million people are living in a state of “severe acute food insecurity”.

Over $39 million earmarked by UN-backed fund to combat effects of climate change in Nepal

More than $39 million in funding was approved on Wednesday for a project that will build resilience and mitigate the effects of climate change, benefitting nearly one million Nepalis, according to the Board of the UN-backed Green Climate Fund (GCF).

Australia wildfires: communities must stay vigilant, urges UN weather agency

As Australia’s “catastrophic” and deadly wildfire emergency continues, UN weather experts on Tuesday echoed Government warnings for people to remain vigilant in the face of the fast-moving threat and tinderbox conditions.

UN human rights expert alarmed at rise in Cambodia arrests

A UN human rights expert is calling on the Cambodian Government to respect its citizens’ rights of freedom of opinion, expression and assembly, amid concerns over escalating tensions and a political crackdown across the country.