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Secretary-General welcomes release of political detainees in Myanmar

Secretary-General Kofi Annan today welcomed the recent release of a number of political detainees in Myanmar and stressed the need to pursue national reconciliation talks between the Government and the opposition.

Disturbed at reported attacks in Afghanistan, Annan urges international response

Secretary-General Kofi Annan reacted with dismay today to reported attacks against civilians in Afghanistan and urged the international community to explore ways to prevent further rights violations there.

Annan heads to United Kingdom next week for meetings with top officials

Secretary-General Kofi Annan will travel to the United Kingdom early next week to deliver a lecture at Oxford University and hold meetings with top officials in London, a United Nations spokesman announced today.

Top UN envoy in Sierra Leone satisfied with deployment of national army

The head of the United Nations Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL) has expressed satisfaction with the smooth deployment of the national army in Kambia district following the completion of the disarmament process in the area.

UN envoy to discuss rights abuses with President of Central African Republic

The Secretary-General's Special Envoy to the Central African Republic is expected to discuss reported human rights abuses with the country's President in Bangui today, according to a United Nations spokesman.

Exodus of ethnic Albanians from FYR of Macedonia continues: UNHCR

Ethnic Albanians continue to flee the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia for Kosovo and southern Serbia, the United Nations refugee agency said today.

Shooting incident prompts UN emergency relief flights to abort mission in Angola

The World Food Programme (WFP) has suspended all cargo flights in Angola pending investigation of a shooting incident involving two agency planes carrying relief food, a United Nations spokesman said today.

UNDP Administrator urges businesses to join battle against AIDS

The Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) today urged business leaders meeting in France to support the global battle against AIDS through donations, advocacy and action.

UN rights official welcomes US opposition to death penalty for mentally disabled

The top United Nations human rights official today welcomed United States President George W. Bush's recent statement that the death penalty should never be applied to any individual who is 'mentally retarded.'

Over 90 per cent of East Timorese registered for election: UN mission

Nearly 91 per cent -- more than 738,000 people -- of East Timor's population had been registered for the upcoming elections in the Territory, the United Nations mission in East Timor announced today.