Asia Pacific

Iran execution of child offender breaks international law: UN rights office

The execution of an Iranian man for a crime allegedly committed when he was 16 years old has been condemned by the UN Human Rights Office (OHCHR) and raised concerns over violations of his right to a fair trial.

First Person: Vietnamese man finds ‘true voice’ in gay community

A Vietnamese man has told the UN he has found his ‘true voice’ in the gay community, despite the discrimination and harassment that LGBT people face in his country

FROM THE FIELD: India’s pandemic of violence against women

An increase in violence against women in India during the global COVID-19 outbreak has been described by the United Nations as a "shadow pandemic".

Young Champions of the Earth: mapping clean water in China

A mobile app which tells the inhabitants of rural China if their water is safe to drink, has won a young woman from Beijing a top UN environmental award.

Iran nuclear deal: ‘Heated rhetoric and the heightened risk of miscalculation’ widen differences

Although the landmark Iran nuclear deal could improve regional stability if fully implemented, increased tensions have highlighted the risks posed by escalation, the UN’s Political and Peacebuilding Affairs chief told the Security Council on Tuesday. 

COVID-19 hits trade in Asia-Pacific, but impact ‘less bad’ than elsewhere

Despite a sharp fall in global trade in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic and lingering trade tensions, Asia and the Pacific is expected to perform relatively less badly than the rest of the world, the United Nations development arm in the region said on Tuesday. 

Thailand: UN rights office deeply troubled by treason charges for protestors

Thailand’s decision to charge protestors with treason is deeply troubling, the UN Human Rights Office, OHCHR, said on Friday following the arrest of at least 35 activists, including a teenager, in recent weeks. 

Afghanistan: Dedicated support required for ‘bigger year’ ahead

Although Afghanistan is coming to the end of a monumental year, authorities will still require international support as they assume greater responsibility for national security while battling COVID-19 and other challenges, UN Special Representative Deborah Lyons told a virtual meeting of the Security Council on Thursday. 

China undermining human rights by locking up rights lawyers, UN independent expert says

China has mounted a "shocking" five-year assault on lawyers who stand up for human rights, putting them in prison and even torturing them, an expert mandated by the UN Human Rights Council said in a statement on Wednesday.

Cartoonist must be released on medical grounds, urge rights experts 

An ailing Bangladeshi cartoonist who has been detained for allegedly spreading fake news about the country’s response to COVID-19, should be released immediately, UN-appointed independent rights experts said on Wednesday.