Middle East

Security Council extends UN Interim Force in Lebanon through January 2002

The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) through the end of January, 2002, while calling for a continued reconfiguration of the Force in response to prevailing conditions.

Top UN rights official 'deeply dismayed' over Israeli attack in Nablus

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Mary Robinson, today expressed "deep dismay" over the escalating violence in the occupied territories following an Israeli attack in the town of Nablus which left at least eight people dead, including two children.

Probe completed into handling of videotape by UN force in Lebanon

A senior United Nations official has completed his investigation into the handling of a controversial videotape that may relate to last year's kidnapping of three Israeli soldiers by Hizbollah, a UN spokesman announced today.

Middle East: Annan deplores latest attacks, urges parties to resume talks

Decrying the most recent clashes in the Middle East, Secretary-General Kofi Annan has called on the parties to control their actions and return to the negotiating table, a spokesperson for the UN leader said today.

Iraq: Baghdad submits new distribution plan for 'oil-for-food' programme

The Government of Iraq has submitted a new plan for distributing humanitarian supplies purchased under the "oil-for-food" programme, which allows Baghdad to use a portion of its petroleum revenues to fund the relief effort.

Iraq: UN transfers $75 million excess administrative funds to relief account

The United Nations has transferred $75 million in Iraqi oil revenues that had been set aside for administrative costs to an account designated for the purchase of humanitarian relief, according to documents made public today at UN Headquarters in New York.

Israel has rendered 'Mitchell committee' report ineffective, UN committee told

The chairman of a United Nations committee monitoring Palestinian rights said today that recommendations put forward by an international fact-finding committee provided a way out of the current impasse, but Israel was blocking their implementation.

UN panel on Israeli practices in occupied territories heads to Egypt, Jordan and Syria

A United Nations committee probing Israeli practices and their impact on the human rights of Palestinians in the occupied territories began today a 12-day trip to the Middle East.

Iraqi oil exports rise under UN's 'oil-for-food' relief programme

Iraq has earned an estimated €342 million (euros) by exporting 15.9 million barrels of crude over the past week - more than doubling revenues from the previous seven-day period under the "oil-for-food" programme, the United Nations office overseeing the humanitarian effort said today.

Lebanon: report on UN probe into videotape controversy expected soon

The top United Nations management official left Lebanon today after interviewing peacekeepers as part of his investigation of the handling of a controversial videotape that may relate to last year's kidnapping of three Israeli soldiers by Hizbollah.