Middle East

Yemeni peace talks extended for another week – UN envoy

With all eyes on Yemeni peace negotiations, the United Nations envoy for the country announced today that the UN-supported talks under way in Kuwait have been extended for an additional week.

UN envoy cites urgent need to establish 48 hour pause for humanitarian access to Aleppo

As the humanitarian crisis reaches distressing levels in Syria, particularly in and around battle-torn Aleppo, the United Nations envoy for the country welcomed today initiatives aimed at assisting the civilian population trapped amid the fighting and, “under the right circumstances,” the implementation of humanitarian corridors.

UNICEF deplores ‘shocking’ attacks in northern Syria towns that leave scores of civilians dead

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has deplored recent shocking attacks in northern Syrian cities of Qamishli and Idlib, which killed more than 60 people including many children; reiterating that all parties to the conflict should respect international humanitarian law and protect children and civilians.

Proposed humanitarian corridors in Aleppo must be guaranteed by all sides, says UN relief chief

Amid reports that Aleppo is ‘de facto besieged,’ as the war-battered city is now almost completely encircled by Syrian troops, the United Nations Emergency Relief Coordinator today reiterated his demand for safe, regular and sustained access to the quarter of a million people trapped behind the front lines, and stressed that “all options must be considered.”

Turkey: In call with Foreign Minister, Ban seeks update on current probe into attempted coup

In a telephone call with the Turkish Foreign Minister today, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon sought an update on current investigations and measures to hold those responsible for the attempted coup to account, and reiterated his expectation that Turkey adhere to its international human rights obligations.

Yemen: Amid rising tensions in Taiz, senior UN official calls for humanitarian pause

Extremely concerned by reports of rising tensions in Yemen’s Taiz governorate, the United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator for the crisis-gripped country has called for a “humanitarian pause” to protect civilians.

Recent attacks on hospitals in Aleppo 'can amount to war crimes' – UNICEF

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) reiterated today that attacks on health facilities are a blatant violation of international humanitarian law and can amount to war crimes, in response to the recent airstrikes on four hospitals and a blood bank in eastern Aleppo city in Syria.

Temperature in Kuwait hits 54 Celsius, sets possible record amid Middle East heatwave – UN

The World Meteorological Organization (WMO), a United Nations specialized agency, will set up a committee to examine whether a 54 degrees Celsius temperature recently recorded in Kuwait, has set the new highest temperature for Asia, as well as for the entire Eastern hemisphere.

Syria: UN envoy aims for peace talks to resume in late August

The United Nations envoy mediating a resolution to the five-year crisis in Syria said today he aims to convene a new round of intra-Syrian peace talks towards the end of August, and expressed hope that the United States and Russia would make “concrete progress” in order to improve the atmosphere for the resumption of the discussions.

UN agency condemns Israel's closures in Hebron as 'collective punishment'

The United Nations relief agency charged with the well-being of Palestinian refugees has said that a closure imposed by Israeli authorities in Hebron district is creating serious challenges for humanitarian access, including the delivery of medical supplies, the removal of refuse, and the daily movement of the agency's staff working inside refugee camp.