Middle East

Iran death penalty threat for abortion unlawful: UN rights experts

A new Iranian law that raises the prospect of the death penalty for abortion has been condemned by independent human rights experts, who have declared that is in “clear contravention of international law”.

‘We cannot lose hope’, UN chief tells media seminar on peace in the Middle East

Sensitizing public opinion to the question of Palestine, and promoting a peaceful settlement to the decades-long conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, are among the goals of the 2021 UN International Media Seminar on Peace in the Middle East, which began on Tuesday. 

Israeli military deauthorization of Palestine NGOs, 'deepens concern' of UN agencies

UN Agencies and the Association International Development Agencies (AIDA) said on Tuesday they were standing firmly behind civil society organisations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, following an Israely military decision to de-authorize six NGOs. 

Iraq: UN condemns assassination attempt on Prime Minister ‘in the strongest terms’

The UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) has condemned “in the strongest terms” the assassination attempt on Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, following a drone attack overnight on Sunday, aimed on his house in Baghdad’s heavily fortified Green Zone.

More than half of Afghans face food insecurity at ‘crisis’ or ‘emergency’ levels

Nearly 23 million people, or 55 per cent of the Afghan population, are estimated to be in crisis or experiencing emergency levels of food insecurity between now and March of next year.  

UN experts call for protection of trafficked workers from Viet Nam in Saudi Arabia 

Some women and girls being recruited in Viet Nam to serve as domestic workers in Saudi Arabia, are suffering sexual abuse and torture, leading a group of UN independent human rights experts on Thursday to call on both nations to curb human trafficking. 

Israel settlement expansion ‘tramples’ on human rights law, experts contend

Israel’s plan to build thousands of new homes for Jewish settlers in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem has drawn strong condemnation from two independent experts appointed by the UN Human Rights Council. 

‘Climate of fear’ prevails for human rights defenders in Afghanistan 

Human rights defenders in Afghanistan report that they are now enduring a “climate of fear”, threats, and becoming increasingly desperate over conditions in the country, an independent UN expert said on Wednesday.  

Syria: Progress still possible, following ‘disappointment’ over constitutional talks

Although the outcome of the latest meeting of the Syrian Constitutional Committee was “a disappointment”, members must continue their vital work, the UN Special Envoy for the country said in a briefing to the Security Council on Wednesday. 

UN experts condemn Israel’s designation of Palestine rights defenders as terrorist organisations 

Independent UN human rights experts on Monday strongly condemned the decision by the Israeli Minister of Defence to designate six Palestinian human rights and civil society groups, as terrorist organisations.