Middle East

$158 million in Iraqi oil sold last week under UN 'oil-for-food' programme

Over the last week $158 million of Iraqi oil was sold under the oil-for-food programme, which allows Baghdad to use a portion of its petroleum revenue to purchase humanitarian relief, according to the United Nations office running the effort.

Japan contributes ¥600 million to UN relief agency for Palestine refugees

Japan today contributed ¥600 million (yen) to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) to support food assistance programmes benefiting Palestinians in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

UN official warns that Palestinian economic conditions reaching 'critical levels'

A senior United Nations Middle East envoy today said the region was experiencing "peace-building in reverse," citing the rising death toll and new studies on the economic conditions facing Palestinians.

Security Council urges Iraq to cooperate on issue of missing Kuwaitis

Expressing "deep concern" at the continuing plight of missing Kuwaitis and nationals of other countries remaining in Iraq in the aftermath of the Persian Gulf war, members of the Security Council today urged Baghdad to resume its cooperation with all bodies dealing with the issue.

General Assembly supports establishment of Middle East monitoring mechanism

Resuming its emergency special session on illegal Israeli actions in Occupied East Jerusalem and the rest of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, the United Nations General Assembly today voted in support of the establishment of a monitoring mechanism for the region.

Iraq: UN reports 'below average' exports under oil-for-food programme

The United Nations humanitarian "oil-for-food" programme said today that Iraqi petroleum exports in the second week of the current Phase XI remained well below average.

Annan urges Iraq to cooperate with his envoy on Kuwaiti missing persons

Secretary-General Kofi Annan has urged the Baghdad authorities to reverse their "unfortunate" stance against cooperation with the United Nations official designated to deal with persons missing as a result of Iraq's 1990 invasion of Kuwait.

Iraq: chief of UN inspectors rejects claim that they cannot seek immediate access

The head of the United Nations body set up to take over the unfinished work of verifying the elimination of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction has said that contrary to recent allegations in the press, his team can demand immediate access to suspected sites in the country.

UN envoy says Arafat's Sunday speech marks potential turning point

Calling the Sunday televised address by Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat "historic," the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process has urged senior Palestinian and Israeli officials to take further steps to ease tension in the region.

Security Council fails to pass measure on Middle East violence; US vetoes text as isolating one party

Meeting into the early hours of Saturday morning on the situation in the Middle East, the Security Council today failed to adopt a draft resolution by which it would have condemned all acts of extrajudiciary executions, excessive use of force and wide destruction of property, and would have encouraged the establishment of a monitoring mechanism to help the parties.