Asia Pacific

Attacking a nuclear plant ‘suicidal,’ UN chief tells journalists in Japan

UN Secretary-General António Guterres condemned a recent attack on a nuclear power station in southern Ukraine during a meeting in Tokyo on Monday with the Japan National Press Club.

Talking to the Taliban ‘only way forward’ in Afghanistan

The devastating earthquake on Wednesday is just one of several emergencies facing Afghanistan, and continued dialogue with the Taliban de facto authorities remains the only way to address ongoing challenges in the country, the Security Council heard on Thursday. 

UN agencies rush to aid Afghanistan following deadly quake

The UN and partners have rushed to support Afghanistan following a devastating earthquake that hit two provinces in the east of the country early on Wednesday morning. 

Sri Lanka: UN appeals for $47 million for life-saving aid to 1.7 million people

Sri Lanka is experiencing a multidimensional economic crisis, which is compounded by food insecurity, rising protection concerns and shortages threatening lives and livelihoods, the UN said on Thursday, appealing for $47.2 million to provide life-saving assistance.

The dangers of defending women accused of sorcery in Papua New Guinea

In Papua New Guinea, defending women accused of sorcery, has become a life-threatening occupation. The UN and European Union run Spotlight Initiative, is promoting legislation that will protect threatened human rights defenders in the country, who risk violence, torture, and death.

World can end ‘downward humanitarian spiral’ of Afghanistan

As the world focuses its attention on the war in Ukraine, the UN reminded the international community on Thursday to remember Afghanistan as it kicked off a pledging conference to save the lives and livelihoods of those in the landlocked country. As the conference drew to a close, it was announced that a total amount of $2.4 billion had been promised.

Call for unity in Security Council over latest DPR Korea missile test

The top UN political affairs official urged the Security Council on Friday to be united in its response to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea’s (DPRK) latest intercontinental ballistic missile launch – the country’s first long-range test since 2017 – as delegates met on Friday afternoon in emergency session, to discuss the matter.

Taliban’s backtracking on girls’ education, ‘deeply damaging’

Following a U-turn over re-opening girls’ secondary schools in Afghanistan on Wednesday, the UN human rights chief shared her “profound frustration and disappointment” that six months after the Taliban seized power, high school girls have yet to return to the classroom.

Drag queen story hour: tales of acceptance and dreams

In full costume and make-up, drag queen Madame Bonjour JohnJ, is teaching children that it’s ok to be different, during storytelling sessions in their native Tokyo.

‘Window of opportunity’ for unity opens in Myanmar

One year on from Myanmar’s military coup, violence and brutality has only intensified, but “a window of opportunity” does exist, “to build upon a unique unity across religious, ethnic, and communal lines”, the UN’s top envoy for the country said on Monday.