Middle East

Israel/Palestine war crimes probe ‘momentous step forward’, says UN rights expert

An independent UN human rights expert hailed on Tuesday, the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) decision to consider a formal criminal investigation into allegations of war crimes in Palestine as a "momentous step forward in the quest for accountability" in the five-decade-long Israeli occupation.

Amidst uptick in violence and displacement, UN chief calls for ‘immediate cessation of hostilities’ in Syria

“Deeply concerned” over a recent military escalation in northwest Syria, Secretary-General António Guterres called for an “immediate cessation of hostilities”.

UN relief chief condemns attacks against humanitarian premises in Yemen

The top UN humanitarian official has called for a thorough investigation into weekend attacks against the premises of three international aid organizations in Yemen that wounded one person, in addition to damaging property. 

Afghan President leads election; UN mission chief urges all to ‘safeguard’ final stage of process


Welcoming the preliminary results for Afghanistan’s presidential election on Sunday, the head of the United Nations mission in the country urged the authorities and all actors to “protect the integrity of the final stage of the process.” 

Top Criminal Court to conduct official probe into alleged war crimes in Palestine

Following a “thorough, independent and objective assessment”, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) announced on Friday that she plans to open a formal investigation into alleged war crimes in Palestine, but asked the Court for a further ruling over territorial jurisdiction.

UN independent experts ‘deeply disturbed’ by alleged mistreatment of detained Iranian protesters

Sixteen independent UN human rights experts called on Friday for the release of arbitrarily detained protesters in Iran who have allegedly been abused while in custody.

Iran and US both undermining nuclear deal says UN political affairs chief

Both Iran and the United States have been putting strain on the groundbreaking 2015 deal to monitor Iran’s nuclear programme, which remains a “cornerstone of international peace and security”, said the UN’s political affairs chief on Thursday.

Tolerance key to tackling violent extremism: UN counter-terrorism chief

The head of the UN Counter-Terrorism Office (UNOCT) has highlighted the importance of tolerance in combating the “corrosive spread” of violent extremism. 

Life for civilians in Syria ‘worse than when the year began’

The humanitarian situation facing civilians in many parts of Syria is “worse than when the year began”, the UN deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator told the Security Council on Thursday.

Only ‘concrete action’ will stop fraying of Israel-Palestine peace prospects

Obstacles to any lasting deal between Israel and Palestine continue to mount, the UN’s Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process told Security Council members on Wednesday, and only “concrete action” towards a two-State solution will change that dynamic.