Asia Pacific

East Timor: UN peacekeepers arrest suspects in Viqueque murders

Peacekeepers from the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) and international police officers arrested three persons today as suspects in murders committed during a riot in Viqueque on 12 March.

East Timor: UN team visits Indonesia's West Timor to encourage repatriation

A team from the United Nations mission in East Timor has held "very successful" meetings with thousands of refugees in camps in West Timor, Indonesia, to inform the East Timorese of the situation in their home territory and encourage their repatriation, the UN peacekeeping operation said today in Dili.

Afghanistan: warring sides agree to ceasefire for UN polio immunization effort

The warring factions in Afghanistan have agreed to respect a ceasefire for three days starting tomorrow to allow a United Nations polio immunization effort to go forward, according to the Islamabad-based UN Coordinator for the country.

UN Asia-Pacific forum to tackle poverty, AIDS as human security threats

Poverty, urbanization, AIDS and other threats to human security will feature high on the agenda as representatives from throughout the Asia-Pacific region gather at the United Nations centre in Bangkok this week, the UN announced today.

DPR of Korea: despite political improvements, relief aid still critical, UN says

Recent improvements in the political climate of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea have not yet had a significant impact on the country's humanitarian situation, which is still critical following a prolonged period of economic decline and a series of natural disasters, the United Nations said today.

East Timor "flexible" in talks over Timor Sea dispute, UN mission says

A high-level United Nations official in East Timor today said that the UN mission and the territory's transitional administration were "flexible" in the negotiations with Australia over a Timor Sea dispute, but that the strength of East Timor, given its small size, was in international law.

UN racism expert to examine indigenous rights during planned visit to Australia

A United Nations human rights expert will examine the rights of indigenous people in Australia during a visit to the country later this month, the UN announced today.

Annan welcomes end to US-China dispute

Welcoming the reported end to the dispute between China and the United States over an aerial incident, Secretary-General Kofi Annan said today he had spoken to Washington and be in contact with Beijing shortly.

High infant mortality rates recorded in northeast Afghanistan: UN aid coordinator

Recent assessment missions by the Office of the United Nations Coordinator for Afghanistan have documented an "alarmingly high" number of infant deaths due to disease in the northeastern part of the country, an area plagued by drought and conflict.

East Timor National Council elects business representative as new Speaker

The National Council of East Timor today elected a representative from the private sector as its new Speaker, following the recent resignation of Xanana Gusmao, the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) reported in Dili.