Middle East

2018 ‘terrifying’ for Yemenis but ultimately a ‘year for hope’ says UN Special Envoy

It has been a “terrifying” year for Yemenis but ultimately one of hope, as December talks in Sweden yielded a ceasefire around a key port city with the promise of further substantive consultations between the warring parties next month, the UN Special Envoy for Yemen, told UN News in an exclusive interview on Wednesday.

UN calls for funds to ease ‘deteriorating’ humanitarian situation in Gaza and West Bank

The need for aid in the occupied Palestinian territory has increased, following a year that has seen a “serious deterioration in the humanitarian situation,” said Jamie McGoldrick, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for the region, in a statement on Monday.

Gaza: deadly violence continues to escalate, top UN officials work to restore calm

As violence in the Gaza Strip is once again flaring up reportedly following a raid and bombings by Israeli forces and multiple rocket launches from inside the Palestinian enclave, the United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, said on Tuesday that he was following developments closely, while his Special Coordinator for the region, Nickolay Mladenov, works with all sides to try and restore calm.

Despite funding crisis, Palestine refugee classrooms set to stay open, says UNRWA

The Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) looks set to keep its classrooms open for the rest of the school year, despite earlier fears that they would have to close within the next few weeks, due to steep funding cuts, the agency told UN News in the Gaza Strip on Thursday.

Aid convoy for north-east Syria postponed over security concerns – UN relief chief

A humanitarian convoy carrying relief aid for tens of thousands of “desperate” civilians in north-eastern Syria who have not received aid since January this year, has been postponed owing to security concerns along its route, the United Nations top humanitarian official said on Monday.

Dramatic funding shortages a ‘severe catastrophe’ for people of Gaza: UN Coordinator

The UN Humanitarian Coordinator for the occupied Palestinian territory, Jamie McGoldrick, has been describing how ordinary Gazans are scraping by on just four hours of electricity per day due to fuel shortages, putting many in “a terrible situation” as the winter months approach.

Restoring prospect of peace in Middle East is ‘our shared responsibility’ UN envoy tells Security Council

Violence is on the rise in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Israeli authorities are continuing to demolish and confiscate Palestinian-owned homes and property, in contravention of international law, the United Nations envoy for the Middle East Peace Process said on Thursday.

Restore hope that peace will come to the Middle East, UN negotiator urges Security Council

Negative humanitarian, security and political developments in Gaza outweigh any positive news concerning the search for peace in the Middle East, the United Nations negotiator for the process has said, urging the international community to help restore hope that a solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict can be found.

Idlib deal could save three million ‘from catastrophe’ says UN chief, as militants are urged to lay down arms

A deal reached between Russia and Turkey to create a demilitarized buffer zone protecting citizens “from catastrophe” in Syria’s Idlib region is a welcome development, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said on Thursday, before urging all parties to make a “strong commitment” to it.

Economy and living standards of Gaza ‘eviscerated’ by crippling blockade – UN trade and development report

The Occupied Palestinian Territory now suffers the highest unemployment rate in the world, with incomes and agricultural production going down, the United Nations trade and development agency said on Wednesday, noting that women and young people were worst affected, as the Israeli occupation continues.