Asia Pacific

China announces support for Secretary-General's second term in office: UN

China, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, today announced its intention to support Secretary-General Kofi Annan's bid for a second term in office, a UN spokesman reported.

East Timor: new panel to seek input from civil society on truth commission

The National Council of East Timor today set up a 15-member panel that will help to gather input from civil society as part of an ongoing effort to establish a "truth commission" on human rights violations committed during the territory's 25-year struggle for independence.

At UN centre, Pakistani students donate funds to help Afghan child mine victims

Dozens of Pakistani students in Islamabad today donated funds to be channelled through the United Nations for Afghan children who have been victimized by landmines.

UN's Asia-Pacific commission ends session with call to reduce region's disparities

The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) ended its annual session today in Bangkok with a call to bridge the region's poverty gap.

East Timor National Council endorses draft on truth commission

The National Council of East Timor today endorsed a draft regulation on the establishment of a Reception, Truth and Reconciliation Commission to deal with the human rights violations committed during the territory's 25-year struggle for independence.

Afghanistan: UN food agency warns of grim prospects for this year's harvest

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today warned that millions of poor Afghans are facing the spectre of another low harvest because of seed and water shortages which have left some 40 per cent of the country's normally cultivated land fallow.

Afghanistan has world's fastest growing crisis of internal displacement: UN

A top United Nations humanitarian official returning from an assessment mission in Afghanistan warned today that the country had the world's fastest growing problem of internal displacement.

China's ratification of Bangkok accord makes it world's largest trade pact, UN says

China's ratification of the Bangkok Agreement has made one of Asia's oldest trade accords the world's largest in terms of market potential, the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) announced today.

East Timor: Ramos-Horta resigns from National Council

Resigning today from the National Council of East Timor, independence leader and Nobel laureate José Ramos-Horta appealed to the Council and all East Timorese to continue supporting the presence of the United Nations in the territory.

Afghan sides prepare for heavy fighting as 'hungry season' nears: Annan

Afghanistan, already facing a "humanitarian crisis of alarming proportions," could see increased fighting during the summer months, coinciding with the country's "hungry season," according to a new report by Secretary-General Kofi Annan.