Middle East

Those responsible for war crimes in Syria ‘will be held accountable for what they have done,’ says UN rights chief

War crimes, potentially crimes against humanity, are likely being committed in east Ghouta and elsewhere in Syria, and the United Nations human rights chief warned on Friday that the perpetrators of these acts must know they are being identified and will be held accountable.

UN ‘will not give up’ on push for ceasefire, says Syria envoy

The United Nations mediator for the Syrian conflict on Thursday said the world body has not given up on the implementation of a recent Security Council resolution demanding a 30-day ceasefire across the war-ravaged country.

Airstrikes, shelling continue in Syria despite Security Council’s ceasefire call – top UN officials

Despite the Security Council’s demand for a ceasefire throughout Syria, violence continues to plague the war-ravaged country, worsening the humanitarian situation and the suffering of its people, top United Nations political and relief officials said Wednesday, calling on all parties to the conflict to “fulfil their obligations to end the fighting.”

UN Security Council agrees 30-day ceasefire in Syria

The United Nations Security Council voted unanimously on Saturday in favor of a 30-day cease-fire in Syria, and demanded immediate lifting of sieges on war-ravaged enclaves like eastern Ghouta, where,  Secretary-General António Guterres warned earlier this week, some 400,000 people are living “in hell on earth.”

‘You can still save lives’; UN aid chief urges Security Council action to halt violence in Syria’s war-battered east Ghouta

The United Nations humanitarian chief on Thursday called for action by the Security Council to halt the appalling destruction of Syria’s eastern Ghouta, where nearly 300 people have reportedly been killed in just the past few days, as “bombs and mortars have rained down on bakeries and medical facilities.”

‘There is no plan B,’ says Guterres, reiterating UN’s commitment to two-state solution to Israeli-Palestinian conflict

After over a century of hostilities including 50 years of continued military occupation, Israelis and Palestinians are still no closer to peace, a United Nations special envoy said on Tuesday, warning that even as many in the region have lost hope for positive change, the enemies of peace are growing more confident by the day.

Syria negotiations may not yield breakthrough, but momentum needs to be maintained – UN envoy

A day before negotiations on the crisis in Syria kick off in Geneva, the United Nations Special Envoy for the war-torn country acknowledged that while he is “not expecting a breakthrough,” the proactive momentum needs to be sustained, and the top United Nations relief official told the Security Council that the country’s humanitarian needs would remain critical for a long time.

INTERVIEW: Robert Serry on the ‘Endless Quest’ for Middle East peace, reflections from no man’s land

The United Nation’s former point person for Middle East negotiations has said that Israelis and Palestinians need at least the prospects of a two-state solution, and urged the international community to create conditions for more effective discussions in the future.

INTERVIEW: Despite ISIL’s terrorist tactics, Iraqi government forces are gaining more ground – Ján Kubiš, UN Special Representative in Iraq

Thursday, 17 November 2016, presented an uncomely anniversary for the inhabitants of Mosul, the second largest Iraqi city, located about 400 kilometres north of Baghdad. It was one month since the Battle of Mosul began, with Iraqi government forces under Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi seeking to recapture the city from ISIL, also known as Da’esh. The extremist group has held control over the city for more than two years now, subjecting civilians there to despicable atrocities and untold suffering.

FEATURE: Music for the children of Yarmouk – and all refugees

“I took my piano and made it everything: my work, and my studies at university; to teach children music,” begins Aeham Ahmad, in an interview with United Nations Radio, ahead of a UN summit on large movements of refugees and migrants on 19 September 2016.