Middle East

UN launches initiative to support returnees trapped in Syria camps

When the extremist militant group ISIL, or Da’esh, collapsed in Iraq and Syria, thousands of foreign nationals were hastily detained in prisons and camps. At least 42,000 foreign women and children, most under the age of 12, currently remain in squalid and overcrowded conditions inside camps in northeast Syria.  

Top UN envoy 'encouraged’ by recent engagement of Israeli and Palestinian officials 

The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process told the Security Council on Wednesday that he was “encouraged” by the recent engagement of senior Israeli and Palestinian officials. 

Now is the time to push for political resolution in Syria: UN envoy

Following a decade of appalling suffering and losses in Syria, and amid a current period of relative calm, now is the time to push for a political process to end the fighting, UN Special Envoy Geir Pedersen told the Security Council on Tuesday.

Syria committed to ‘combating and eradicating terrorism’, General Assembly hears

In his speech to the high-level debate at the UN General Assembly on Monday, Fayssal Mekdad, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Expatriates of Syria, reaffirmed his country’s commitment to combat terrorism and aim to ‘restore security and stability’.

Iran nuclear programme at ‘critical point’, Israeli Prime Minister warns

With Iran’s nuclear programme at a “watershed moment”, the country must be stopped from acquiring a nuclear weapon, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Monday in his inaugural speech to the UN General Assembly.

Iraqi President warns against complacency in the fight against terrorism

International cooperation and solidarity are the only way to combat terrorism, Iraqi President Barham Salih said in his speech to the UN General Assembly on Thursday, warning against complacency. 

King of Saudi Arabia says peace is top priority for his country 

The King of Saudi Arabia, Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, said on Wednesday that promoting peace is his Kingdom’s top priority in international affairs. 

First Person: The ‘bravery’ of Afghanistan's girls and women

Afghanistan’s girls and women are showing “bravery” in the face of real “fears and pressures” following the formation of the new, de facto authorities in Afghanistan,  according to a UNICEF member of staff, one of the few westerners to remain in Kabul.

Sanctions are ‘US way of war’, Iranian President at UN

In his speech to the high-level General Debate at the UN General Assembly on Tuesday, Iranian President Seyyed Ebrahim Raisi called for an end to United States sanctions against his country, describing them as a method of waging war.

Afghanistan: Security Council resolution calls for ‘equal and meaningful participation of women’  

The Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution renewing the mandate of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) on Friday, specifying the importance of “equal and meaningful participation” of women in public life.