Asia Pacific

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.

More study needed on Asian brown haze, global warming and ozone: UNEP

In the wake of an international meeting on climate change, the head of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) today emphasized the need to develop a more complete picture of the roles and interactions of greenhouse gases, aerosols and ozone.

Misery increasing in western Afghanistan, UN relief coordinator warns

The situation in western Afghanistan continues to deteriorate as summer approaches, with about 1,000 people leaving their homes each day to escape drought, conflict, or both, according to a statement issued today by the Office of the United Nations Coordinator for Afghanistan.

Myanmar: UN human rights expert reports cautious optimism among parties

A United Nations human rights expert who has just returned from Myanmar after three days of talks with government and opposition party leaders said today that there appeared to be cautious optimism about the latest developments in the country.

Security Council discusses elections, leadership and civil unrest in East Timor

Civil disturbances in East Timor, the forthcoming elections and the resignation of Xanana Gusmão as president of the National Council dominated discussions in the Security Council today as members heard a briefing by a top United Nations peacekeeping official.

Afghanistan: responding to UN appeal, Japan donates additional $7 million in aid

Responding to an appeal by the United Nations Emergency Relief Coordinator, Japan has donated an additional $7 million to help the beleaguered people of Afghanistan, where the combined forces of war and drought have forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes.

East Timor: Transitional Cabinet endorses establishment of police service

The East Timor Transitional Cabinet today endorsed a draft regulation formally establishing the territory's first Police Service and Police Academy, the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET) said in a statement issued in Dili.

UN refugee agency awaits full access to Afghans in rain-soaked camps

The United Nations refugee agency reported today that it was still awaiting full access to tens of thousands of Afghans encamped in a makeshift site in Pakistan, where conditions have deteriorated recently under the force of heavy rains.