Middle East

In Gaza, UN agency stores food for Palestinians affected by Israeli withdrawal

Anticipating possible logistic hurdles and uncertainty in connection with Israel’s withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced today that it had stored food supplies there to sustain tens of thousands of impoverished Palestinians through the end of October.

Top UN envoy in Iraq urges redoubled efforts to complete constitution by Monday

The senior United Nations envoy in Iraq today called upon all parties and their leaders to redouble their efforts to meet the new deadline of 22 August for producing a draft permanent constitution after they missed the original 15 August target date.

Secretary-General closely following Israeli withdrawal from Gaza

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan is following attentively the process of Israeli disengagement from Gaza and the northern West Bank and he is hopeful that it will be executed in a peaceful and smooth manner, building on the coordination efforts of James Wolfensohn, the Quartet Special Envoy for Disengagement, his spokesman said today.

Team from UN nuclear watchdog to go to Iran to discuss outstanding issues

A team from the United Nations agency entrusted with curbing the spread of nuclear weapons is set to go to Iran today to discuss outstanding issues dealing with safeguards, contamination and the extent of the country’s uranium enrichment programme.

Palestinian and Israeli children must be kept safe during Gaza pull-out – UN

With Israel's planned withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and parts of the northern West Bank set to begin early next week, the head of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) today urged that all children be kept out of harm's way during the exercise.

Annan hopeful for 'satisfactory closure' on missing Kuwaitis in Iraq

In a new report on the fate of Kuwaitis who went missing in Iraq after the 1990 invasion of their country, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan says he is hopeful that with the expanding activities of Kuwaiti investigative teams and increased cooperation by the new Iraqi authorities, more human remains will eventually be brought to Kuwait and more missing persons files can be closed.

Security Council unanimously renews UN mission in Iraq for another year

The Security Council today unanimously renewed for a further year the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), whose tasks range from coordinating various humanitarian operations to helping the war-torn country draft a new constitution and organize fresh elections by the end of the year.

UN agency's Palestinian students excel in recent exams

The main United Nations agency helping Palestinian refugees today reported examination results up to more than 30 per cent above the national average at two of its training centres in Jordan in subjects ranging from dental hygiene to industrial electronics.

UN nuclear watchdog urges Iran to reverse decision resuming uranium conversion

The United Nations agency entrusted with curbing the spread of nuclear weapons today called on Iran to reverse its decision to resume uranium conversion activities, noting that outstanding issues relating to the country's nuclear programme have yet to be resolved.

Secretary-General calls on Iraqi leaders to reach agreement on new constitution

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today called on all political, religious and civil society leaders in Iraq to exercise the vision and the political will needed to come to an agreement on the new national constitution in the next few days.