Middle East

Iraq: absent UN weapons inspectors continue analyzing biological samples

United Nations weapons inspectors withdrawn from Iraq on the eve of the war in March have continued analyzing biological samples and evaluating Iraqi Al-Samoud 2 missiles in their search for evidence of banned weapons that Saddam Hussein may have possessed, according to their latest report released today.

General Assembly passes six resolutions on Palestine and the Middle East

The United Nations General Assembly today adopted six resolutions to demonstrate its belief that a final, peaceful settlement to the question of Palestine is essential to ensuring there is lasting peace in the Middle East.

Nineteen countries pledge financial support to UN agency helping Palestinians

Nineteen countries pledged today to donate $72 million towards next year’s budget for the United Nations agency helping Palestinian refugees, but the agency says much more is needed because of the deteriorating economic situation in the Palestinian territories.

Aid agencies facing too many hurdles to work in Iran, UN refugee agency says

Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) trying to help refugees in Iran are meeting frequent administrative obstacles, despite official statements of welcome, the United Nations refugee agency said today.

UN observes International Day of Solidarity with Palestinian People

The United Nations today observed the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People with a series of resolutions and speeches calling for a peaceful settlement of the Middle East conflict.

Annan meets with advisory group on Iraq

Secretary-General Kofi Annan met his advisory group on Iraq for the first time today, a move aimed at persuading countries in the region to support the same approach to the post-conflict country.

UN refugee agency alarmed by refugees stuck on the border of Iraq and Jordan

The United Nations refugee agency expressed concern today about the fate of an estimated 1,800 refugees who have been stranded for seven months in camps near the border between Iraq and Jordan.

Israel not complying with General Assembly demand to halt barrier - Annan

Israel is not in compliance with a demand by the United Nations General Assembly to halt and take down a barrier on occupied Palestinian land, and the construction in present circumstances cannot be seen “as anything but a deeply counterproductive act,” Secretary-General Kofi Annan says in a report released today.

Israel and Palestinians cannot afford to wait for the other to move first, says Annan

Recent moves by Palestinian and Israeli civil society to promote peace show a settlement can be achieved, but the Israeli Government and the Palestinian Authority must act now instead of waiting for the other side to move first, according to United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

UN nuclear watchdog deplores Iran’s breaches, warns of action on future violations

The United Nations nuclear watchdog agency today strongly deplored Iran’s past breaches of a safeguards agreement aimed at preventing the development of nuclear weapons and, while welcoming Tehran’s recent cooperation, warned that further serious failures would bring an immediate response.