Middle East

Iranian Kurd refugees in central Iraq camp face bleak conditions - UN

Nearly 3,000 Iranian Kurds in a camp in central Iraq, cut off for the past two weeks from outside help because of fighting in the region, are facing bleak conditions with no water or electricity although food has reached them, the United Nations refugee agency said today.

UN envoy urges Israel to 'grab' Syria's outstretched hand for talks

The top United Nations envoy for the Middle East today became the first UN official to appear before the Israeli parliament's Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee, and urged the country to "grab the outstretched hand" of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to resume peace negotiations without preconditions.

Security Council sets up Trust Fund for donations to protect UN presence in Iraq

The Security Council today established a Trust Fund for donations to finance a protection force for the United Nations presence in Iraq.

UN envoy travelling to Iran for regional meeting on Iraq

The top United Nations envoy for Iraq is heading to Iran for a meeting of interior ministers from Iraq and its neighbours, a UN spokesman said today.

UN nuclear watchdog calls for assurances from Iran about undeclared activities

The United Nations agency entrusted with preventing the spread of nuclear weapons today welcomed Iran's decision to suspend all uranium enrichment activities and called on it to grant the access needed to provide "credible assurances" that is has not engaged in any undeclared nuclear activities.

UN marks day of solidarity with Palestinian people

The United Nations today observed the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, with Secretary-General Kofi Annan urging the international community to renew its commitment to work for a “reinvigorated peace process” in the Middle East.

UN voices ‘extreme concern’ for thousands of Iranian Kurd refugees in Iraq

For the second time in a week the United Nations refugee agency today expressed “extreme concern” over the fate of thousands of Iranian Kurds caught up in the fighting in central Iraq without access to regular food rations.

UN envoy and Lebanon agree to try to revitalize Middle East peace process

The top United Nations envoy in the Middle East has held talks in Beirut with senior members of the Lebanese Government about how to revitalize the peace process in the troubled region.

'Jury is still out' on Iran's nuclear activities - IAEA chief

The United Nations agency entrusted with preventing the spread of nuclear weapons has accounted for all declared nuclear material in Iran, but still has a lot of work to do with regard to possible undeclared material or activity, the agency's chief said today.

UN envoy ‘guardedly optimistic’ that elections in Iraq can take place on schedule

The top United Nations envoy for Iraq is “guardedly optimistic” that credible elections will take place on time on 30 January but cautions that the current violence is having an adverse effect on the political and electoral processes in the war-torn country.