United Nations news in brief: 8 December 2016

8 December 2016

Following are brief summaries of some of today’s news stories from around the UN system. Click on the links provided for more detailed coverage.

Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict, Zainab Bangura briefs the press. At left is Stéphane Dujarric, spokesperson for the Secretary-General. UN Photo/Mark Garten
UN chief appoints new Force Commander of UN mission in Western Sahara

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today announced the appointment of Major General Wang Xiaojun of China as the new Force Commander of the UN Mission For The Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO). Major General Wang succeeds Major General Muhammad Tayyab Azam of Pakistan.

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Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré
UN rights chief urges Israel to reconsider bill to legalize outposts

Raising alarm over a proposed legislation that, if adopted, would allow retroactive “legalization” of so-called “Israeli outposts” built on privately owned Palestinian lands in the West Bank, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights called on Israeli lawmakers to reconsider their support for the bill.

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 OCHA/H. Al-Jundi
Ban appoints Qatari national as his new humanitarian envoy

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today announced the appointment of Ahmed Al Meraikhi of Qatar as his Humanitarian Envoy to support response to humanitarian crises and help strengthen engagement between governments and the international humanitarian community. Mr. Al Meraikhi succeeds Abdullah al Matouq of Kuwait.

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Global food price index dipped ‘slightly’ in November – FAO

LMarking a departure from an almost uninterrupted rising trend in 2016, the FAO Food Price Index dipped slightly to 171.3 points in November, shedding 0.4 per cent of its October value, the UN food and agricultural agency said today. The fall was attributed to a sharp drop in sugar prices.

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 Dominic Chavez/World Bank
Role of agriculture vital to addressing poverty – UN agency

In a new report, the UN agricultural development agency (IFAD) has called for boosting the role of agriculture as a vital step to address poverty and inequality as well as for fostering economic development in rural areas in the Near East and North African regions.

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