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UN Assembly approves extension of Mary Robinson's appointment as rights chief

The United Nations General Assembly today approved the extension of Mary Robinson's appointment as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Ready to begin work in Iraq, UN weapons inspectors await green light

United Nations weapons experts are set to begin field operations in Iraq as soon as they receive a green light to enter the country, according to a new report by the head of the inspections team.

Sierra Leone: RUF hands over more weapons to UN mission

The Revolutionary United Front (RUF) has returned weapons and military equipment seized last year from United Nations peacekeepers, the UN Mission in Sierra Leone (UNAMSIL) said today.

Upcoming General Assembly session to address global lack of adequate shelter

A special meeting of the General Assembly on human settlements set to open next week will confront the world's growing homelessness and lack of adequate shelter, according to a key United Nations official associated with the event.

On World No-Tobacco Day, UN health agency urges ban on public smoking

Seizing the occasion of World No-Tobacco Day, traditionally marked on 31 May to raise awareness of the dangers of smoking, the United Nations health agency today sent out a message that "second-hand smoke kills" and urged a ban on smoking in public places.

Annan hails launch of new publication series on UN's intellectual history

Secretary-General Kofi Annan has hailed the launch of a new series of publications which traces the contribution of the United Nations to evolving concepts of economic and social development.

New UN study aims to curb use of ozone-depleting halons

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) today announced the release of a new publication designed to inform developing countries about how other nations have successfully stopped using ozone-depleting halons to extinguish fires.

DR of Congo: positive signs noted, as Security Council debates report of its mission

The delegation of the United Nations Security Council that has just returned from Africa's Great Lakes region described today an improved situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and outlined a number of positive developments indicating movement towards a possible solution to the conflict there.

First patrol boats for Congo River arrive in Kinshasa, UN Mission says

The United Nations Mission in the DRC (MONUC) today reported that it had received the first patrol boats for use on the Congo River, which will allow a resumption of riverine traffic between the East and West of the country.

Security Council extends UN force in Israel-Syria sector through November

Against the backdrop of simmering tensions in the Middle East, the Security Council today extended through November the United Nations operation supervising the disengagement of Syrian and Israeli forces.