Middle East

Iraq: UN warns against ‘collective punishment’ of population with alleged ISIL ties

The United Nations human rights office has expressed concern over forced evictions of people alleged to have ties with the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da'esh) terrorist group, noting that such actions may amount to collective punishment that is in clear contravention of the Iraqi Constitution as well as human rights and humanitarian law.

Challenges abound as ‘significant’ numbers of displaced return within Syria, warns UNHCR

Citing “significant” returns of displaced persons to and within Syria, the United Nations refugee agency said today that while it will be scaling up its response to assist those coming back, it can neither promote nor facilitate returns given the security and humanitarian situation in the war-torn country.

UN rights chief decries ‘unacceptable attack’ on Al Jazeera and other media

The United Nations human rights chief today expressed strong concern about international demands that Qatar close down the Al Jazeera network and other affiliated media outlets as “extraordinary, unprecedented and clearly unreasonable.”

Ending occupation only way to lay foundations for lasting Israeli-Palestinian peace – UN officials

Top United Nations officials today declared that ending the occupation is the only way to lay the foundations for enduring peace that meets Israeli security needs and Palestinian aspirations for statehood and sovereignty.

Delays in access in Syria ‘will mean further death,’ warns top UN relief official

Citing attacks against aid workers in Syria, the removal of live-saving supplies from convoys and bureaucratic impediments restricting access, the United Nations Emergency Relief Coordinator has called for ensuring immediate and safe humanitarian access to save lives that are dependent on assistance.

Civilians must not be sacrificed for military victories – UN rights chief, as thousands trapped in Raqqa

Voicing grave concern over the fate of as many as 100,000 civilians “effectively trapped” in Syria's Raqqa governorate amid the ongoing offensive against Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant fighters, the top United Nations rights official urged all parties to the conflict to enact measures to allow civilians who wish to flee the fighting to do so in safety.

UN envoy maps out 'ideal trajectory' to next round of intra-Syrian talks in Geneva

The United Nations mediator for the conflict in Syria today mapped out what needs to happen in the next two weeks before the next round of intra-Syrian talks begins on 10 July in Geneva, Switzerland.

Yemen hit by world's worst cholera outbreak as cases reach 200,000 – UN

Yemen is now facing the worst cholera outbreak in the world, with suspected cases exceeding 200,000 and the number increasing at an average of 5,000 a day, the United Nations warned today.

Security 'number one concern' of displaced Iraqis seeking to return home – UN study

With three million Iraqis remaining internally displaced across the country, the United Nations migration agency today published findings of a study showing that the decision to return or remain displaced depends largely on how close their home is to the frontline of conflict.

Civilian casualties continue to rise in Yemen, warns UN human rights office

The United Nations Human Rights Office in Yemen continues to document reports of civilian casualties in the conflict and had verified 49 civilian deaths over the past month, a UN spokesperson said today.