Middle East

Security Council backs corruption probe of UN's Oil-for-Food programme

The Security Council today gave its backing to an independent probe ordered by Secretary-General Kofi Annan to look into allegations of corruption within the United Nations Oil-for-Food humanitarian programme in Iraq.

Brahimi heading to Iraq soon to join electoral team - UN spokesperson

With a United Nations electoral team already in Iraq surveying the possibility of holding direct elections by the end of January, Secretary-General Kofi Annan's Special Adviser, Lakhdar Brahimi, is expected to head to the country soon, a UN spokesperson said today.

Annan takes strong disciplinary measures after probe reveals security failures in Iraq

Secretary-General Kofi Annan today announced a series of disciplinary measures, including calls for the resignation of senior UN officials, following the release of a critical report by a panel that identified institutional and individual failures in assessing the security situation in Baghdad prior to the terrorist attack last August that killed 22 people, including the UN's top envoy in Iraq.

Details of independent probe into UN Oil-for-Food programme sent to Security Council

Secretary-General Kofi Annan has sent the Security Council a letter detailing the workings of an independent, high-level inquiry into allegations of corruption within the United Nations Oil-for-Food humanitarian operation for Iraq, a UN spokesman said today.

Panel finds senior officials lax in ensuring UN’s safe return to Iraq

An independent investigation into responsibility for security failures in the lead-up to the deadly bombing of United Nations offices in Iraq last year found senior UN officials in charge of staff safety were lax in carrying out their duties and “blinded” by the belief that the world body would not come under attack despite warnings to the contrary.

UN electoral team arrives in Iraq

A team of United Nations electoral experts arrived in Baghdad today along with security support, a UN spokesman said in New York.

UN humanitarian agencies urge Israel to lift movement restrictions into Gaza

Calling on the Israeli Government today to restore full access to Gaza for humanitarian aid, the UN Special Coordinator's Office (UNSCO) said new Israeli-imposed restrictions on staff movements may force humanitarian agencies to cut back on assisting Gaza's civilian population.

Annan, Security Council discuss Oil-for-Food investigation

Secretary-General Kofi Annan met today with Security Council members to review the workings of a proposed independent panel to probe allegations of corruption within the United Nations Oil-for-Food humanitarian programme for Iraq.

Resolution condemning killing of Hamas leader defeated by US veto in Security Council

The United Nations Security Council today failed to adopt a resolution that would have condemned the assassination of Hamas leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, with the United States vetoing what it called a one-sided text.

States must aid Iraq, UN expert tells Commission on Human Rights in Geneva

The international community must help Iraq to foster democracy, the United Nations expert charged with monitoring abuses in the country today told the Geneva-based Commission on Human Rights.