Amb. Zara Juan

Saturday, December 16, 2017

#Pray4Peace: #Palestine and #Israel: UN reaffirms two-state solution as only answer to ‘question of Palestine’

Miroslav Lajvak, President of the General Assembly at the special meeting of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People in observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. UN Photo/Kim Haughton
The Question of Palestine is inextricably linked with the history of the United Nations and is one of the longest-standing issues on the Organization's agenda, United Nations Secretary-General António said in his message commemorating the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People last 29 November, 2017
Seventy years since General Assembly Resolution 181 was adopted, a sovereign and independent State of Palestine has yet to emerge alongside the State of Israel.
“I remain convinced that the two-state solution is the only one for a just, lasting and comprehensive peace between Israelis and Palestinians. The resolution of this conflict would also create momentum for greater stability throughout the region,” stated Mr. Guterres.
Recalling his August visit to Israel and Palestine, the UN chief said leaders on both sides restated their commitment to a negotiated peace.
"I encourage them to tangible challenge this commitment and create conditions for a meaningful negotiation. The recent positive developments in intra-Palestinian unity should be taken up by the leadership,” he asserted.
The Secretary-General also reiterated his readiness “to work with all stakeholders, including the Middle East Quartet and countries in the region, to support a serious political process, drawing on all under UN resolutions, international law and agreements, that will achieve a two-State solution, end half a century of occupation and resolve all final status issues.”
Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed read Mr. Guterres’ message at a Special Meeting of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, before adding her own words.
Ms. Mohammed observed that for 70 years the UN has gathered on 29 November to support the Palestinian right to self-determination and independence and the establishment of a Palestinian state.
“Ending illegal Israeli settlement activity and demolitions in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, is crucial to the viability of a future Palestinian state and to realizing the legitimate national and historic aspirations of both people. Eliminating violence and incitement is essential to building trust,” she told the participants.
Ms. Mohammed stressed that with crumbling infrastructure, chronic unemployment and a paralyzed economy, Gaza is in a state of constant humanitarian emergency.
“This unsustainable reality demands urgent humanitarian, economic and political measures to support the Palestinian population. We must not leave women, children and youth behind,” she asserted.
“Ending the occupation and achieving a two-state solution is the only path to enduring peace between Israelis and Palestinians. There is no other option,” emphasized Ms. Mohammed.
For his part, General Assembly President Miroslav Lajčák underscored that the situation needs full-time attention that extends beyond humanitarian support, to facilitate a peaceful resolution.
“I firmly believe that a two-state solution is the only answer to what we call the question of Palestine,” he underscored.
According to Mr. Lajčák, the international community must support conditions conducive to a successful peace process. In addition to immediately halting settlement expansion, other actions encompassed the cessation and condemnation of all acts of violence, including terrorism, as well as the incitement to these acts.
“When it comes to the question of Palestine, we have a responsibility and we have an interest. Palestinian people do not need our sympathy – they deserve our solidarity,” he declared.

#Pray4Peace: #DRCongo: Severe Acute Malnutrition could claim the lives of more than 400,000 Children under the age of five in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s volatile Kasai region

“This nutrition crisis and food insecurity in the Kasai region follows the displacement of thousands of families who have been living for months in very harsh conditions,” said Tajudeen Oyewale, the acting head of UNICEF in the African nation, in a news release underlining the scale of the catastrophe.
“The true scale of the problem is becoming clear as people are returning home in some areas where the security situation has improved and health services have started functioning again.”
According to estimates, at least 750,000 children across the Kasai region are acutely malnourished and some 25 health zones are in a situation of nutritional crisis – a state when the severely has exceeded emergency thresholds.
The dire situation is primarily the result of over 18 months of insecurity and violence that has resulted in displacement of over 1.4 million and has severely reduced agricultural production with some two-thirds of households not to work their land to grow crops.
The level of food insecurity is not expected to improve before June next year as the planting seasons for crops which would have been harvested by then has already been lost.
Making matters much worse is the “devastation” of health facilities, according to UNICEF.
Approximately 220 health centres have been destroyed, looted or damaged, access to treatment for communicable diseases as well as care for the children severely malnourished extremely difficult.
“Guaranteeing access to basic health and nutrition services to returning populations is essential to help malnourished children survive and thrive,” said Mr. Oyewale.
In response to the crisis, UNICEF and partners provided therapeutic nutritional care to more than 50,000 children aged between 6-59 months in the region this year. However, lack of resources has severely impacted aid delivery.
With just days remaining in the year, the UN agency has received a mere 15 per cent of the funds it required for 2017.

12December 2017 – In the coming year, severe acute malnutrition could claim the lives of more than 400,000 children under the age of five in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s volatile Kasai region, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warned Tuesday.

#Pray4Peace: #DPRK: UN chief stresses need to denuclearize Korean Peninsula, avoid ‘sleepwalking into war’

14 December 2017 – United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres wrapped up a short visit to Tokyo on Thursday with an appeal to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and other countries to implement relevant Security Council resolutions to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula.
“I think we all want to avoid that things get out of control and that misperceptions and mishandling of situations make us sleepwalk into a war that will have devastating consequences,” Mr. Guterres told a press conference held at Japan National Press Club, stressing the need for the implementation of all Council resolutions, first by the DPRK and then all the other countries that have such obligations.
“The objective is the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, and it is extremely important to preserve the unity of the Security Council,” he added.
Mr. Guterres is set to brief the Security Council on the DPRK, tomorrow, Friday, 15 December.
Asked about the outcome of a recent visit to Pyongyang by UN Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman, Mr. Guterres said that “in diplomacy and especially in discreet diplomacy, it is difficult to measure an immediate result of any initiative” but “the message was conveyed.”
He said that the message was that not only that Security Council resolutions must be implemented, but there must be a sense of urgency in creating the conditions for a meaningful dialogue to achieve the denuclearization of the Peninsula.
On questions about a possible military strike against the DPRK by the United States, he refused to comment on “things that have not happened” but said he is “a believer that a military solution would have dramatic negative consequences and that we need to be able to achieve the goal to denuclearize the Korean peninsula and to achieve it through diplomatic engagement.”
Asked what the UN can do in a concrete manner about the situation, he said that the Security Council has taken the right decisions, and the Secretariat has to explore all ways to convey the messages that are necessary for those decisions to be implemented peacefully.
“We are not miracle makers. We are people committed to a cause, and that cause is the cause of peace and security in line with international law,” he said.
To a question about a possible visit to the DPRK by himself, the Secretary-General said he would go anywhere at any time when it is useful.
“But I am not aiming at a protagonism just to appear in the cameras of the televisions,” he said. “We are available, but we can only mediate when both parties accept our mediation.”
The main purpose of the Secretary-General trip to Japan was to address the global Universal Health Coverage Forum 2017 held in Tokyo.

#Pray4Peace: #IRAQ mass execution. Expressing deep shock at a mass execution of 38 men at a prison in the Iraqi city of Nassiriya, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has called on the country to establish an immediate moratorium and carry out an urgent and comprehensive review of its criminal justice system

“The mass execution […] once again raises huge concerns about the use of the death penalty in the country,” Liz Throssell, an OHCHR spokesperson, told the media at a regular news briefing in Geneva Friday.
“Given the flaws of the Iraqi justice system, it appears extremely doubtful that strict due process and fair trial guarantees were followed in these 38 cases,” she added.
All prisoners had been convicted for terrorism-related crimes. They were executed Thursday.
Also in her briefing, Ms. Throssell said that the executions and the fears over due process and fair trial guarantees raised the dangers of “irreversible miscarriages” of justice and violations of the right to life.
The UN rights office has time and again raised concerns over the continued use of death penalty in the country.
So far this year, it has been informed of 106 executions in the country, including the mass hanging of 42 prisoners in a single day in September, the spokesperson added.
“We once again urge the Iraqi authorities to halt all executions, establish an immediate moratorium on the use of the death penalty and carry out an urgent and comprehensive review of the criminal justice system,” she added.

Source: Dec 15, 2017

Friday, December 15, 2017

PEACE VIGIL: UN Headlines: Nov 11 - Dec 15, 2017 from UN News C...

PEACE VIGIL: UN Headlines: Nov 11 - Dec 15, 2017 from UN News C...: 15 December 2017 UN rights wing ‘appalled’ at mass execution in Iraq ‘American Dream’ quickly becoming an ‘illusion,’ says UN human ri...

Friday, November 10, 2017

Pray4Peace: YEMEN will be gripped by famine – one the likes of which the world has not seen in years – if the blockade on basic supplies into the country imposed by the Saudi Arabia-led coalition is not lifted immediately

PEACE VIGIL: Pray4Peace: YEMEN will be gripped by famine – one ...: “It will be the largest famine the world has seen for many decades,” Mark Lowcock, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, told the media lat...

PEACE VIGIL: UN Headlines: Sept 26 – Nov 10, 2017 from UN News ...

UN Headlines: Sept 6 – Sept 25, 2017 from UN News

Headlines at a glance


10 November 2017

Accelerate climate action and raise ambition, urges UN chief

Science and technology can provide solutions to key sustainable development challenges


9 November 2017

Victims can help shape effective counter-terrorism strategies, says senior UN official

Syrian conflict has now lasted longer than World War II – UN humanitarian envoy

‘Leave no stone unturned’ to secure aid funding for Central African Republic, senior UN official urges

Global food import bill rising despite robust output in 2017 – UN

Bonn: At UN climate conference, Congo Basin youth spotlight their work protecting fragile forest ecosystem

Yemen facing largest famine the world has seen for decades, warns UN aid chief

Four judges elected to International Court of Justice


8 November 2017

UN migration agency expands HIV/AIDS services in South Sudan displacement sites

ICC prosecutor urges handover of Al-Saiqa brigade commander, others wanted for alleged crimes in Libya

UN agriculture agency launches handbook to improve safety in banana farming sector

Bonn: Participants at UN conference examine human mobility in an era of climate change

Agreement boosts cooperation between UN space affairs office and UAE

Clashes near vital infrastructure in eastern Ukraine may have 'grave' impact on population, UN warns


7 November 2017

Both ISIL and Syrian Government responsible for use of chemical weapons, UN Security Council told

Security Council re-authorizes EU-led force in Bosnia and Herzegovina

UN Security Council urges ‘comprehensive response’ to piracy off Somali coast

DR Congo: Security Council underscores need to bring killers of UN experts to justice

One-third of Rohingya refugee families in Bangladesh vulnerable, UN agency finds

UN health agency recommends farmers stop using antibiotics in healthy animals

‘Catastrophic’ humanitarian blockade in Yemen putting millions at risk, UN warns

Bonn: Indigenous peoples’ knowledge and wisdom valuable to climate adaptation, Peruvian activists say

Attacks against places of worship in Afghanistan rise sharply, UN warns

Building safe houses, UN agency helping Dominica recover from disaster


6 November 2017

Security Council recognizes contributions of police components to UN peacekeeping

UN Security Council calls on Myanmar to end excessive military force in Rakhine state

UN chief extends condolences to bereaved families in wake of ‘horrific’ shooting in Texas church

Protect environment from wars and conflicts, UN urges on International Day

Journalism under fire amid rise of ‘fake news’ and social media-driven echo chambers – UNESCO report

Corruption hits most vulnerable; obliterates faith in good governance, UN chief tells forum in Vienna

Security Council considers boost in UN peacekeepers numbers in Central African Republic

Asia-Pacific regional consultations on UN strategy for safe migration open in Bangkok

Harvest season provides meagre respite to South Sudan’s ongoing hunger crisis

Bonn: UN climate conference aims for greater ambition as 2017 set to be among top three hottest years

UN meeting in Dubai to examine crucial role of space for development

Parties to 'brutal conflict' in Yemen must respect international humanitarian law – UN official

Headlines at a glance


5 November 2017

UN 'will walk with Haiti' on path towards sustainable development, senior official pledges

Lebanon: As Prime Minister's resigns, UN chief hopes all sides focus on support for State institutions


3 November 2017

Bonn: UN climate conference to maintain ambition one year after Paris accord’s entry into force

People without nationality face ‘stark realities’ of discrimination and persecution – UN report

UN concerned over 'unfolding humanitarian emergency' at Australia's offshore processing centre

Madagascar: UN health agency sees drop in cases of plague; urges vigilance as risk of spread remains

UN advocate vows to give 'visibility' to victims of sexual exploitation and abuse

Thousands of Rohingyas cross into Bangladesh overnight; child malnutrition soars in camps – UN

UN backed-report highlights role of business in achieving Global Goal on justice and strong institutions


2 November 2017

Suspected cholera cases in crisis-torn Yemen near 900,000 – UN

Diarrhoea-related diseases claim lives of 26 children each day in Afghanistan – UNICEF

UN report concludes ISIL committed ‘international crimes’ during Mosul battle

'Injustice against journalists costly for society,' says UNESCO chief on International Day

UN forum closes in Bahrain with the spotlight on entrepreneurs for sustainable development

'Failure to broker peace' hinders solutions to displacement, UN refugee chief tells Security Council


1 November 2017

South Sudan: UN Mission weighs re-establishing presence in north-eastern town

Shift to clean, affordable energy critical to attaining Global Goals – UN officials

UN agency and EXPO Dubai 2020 agree on strengthening cooperation for Global Goals

UN General Assembly again calls for lifting US embargo against Cuba

UN chief contacts New York City Mayor, US Ambassador to extend condolences in wake of deadly attack

Violence against children pervasive in homes, schools and communities – UNICEF

UN envoy welcomes full return of Gaza border crossings to Palestinian Authority

Women are looking for opportunities in business, UN forum told

Headlines at a glance


31 October 2017

FEATURE: As Afghan war grinds on, a marginalized young generation raises its voice

UN Security Council urges more protections for children in conflicts

Rohingya refugees drown as boat capsizes in rough waters off coast of Bangladesh – UN

UN sees 'worrying' gap between Paris climate pledges and emissions cuts needed

Unrest in Cameroon's Anglophone regions sends thousands fleeing to Nigeria – UN agency

Ahead of Brazil Summit, UN reports three million people now have access to hepatitis C cure

Push for Global Goals makes partnerships, innovation 'more important than ever,' UN forum in Bahrain told

All 17 Global Goals interrelated, with strong links to gender equality – senior UN official

'Doctrines of rejection' must be met with courage, commitment to solidarity and empathy – UNESCO chief

Syria: UN agencies deliver critical food aid, medicines to families trapped in rural Damascus

'Rethink ways to govern cities,' UN-Habitat chief urges on World Day


30 October 2017

UN chief stresses prevention, support for victims in counter-terrorism speech

With 13 million inside Syria needing aid, UN relief chief says impact of crisis remains 'profound'

UN warns of 'looming humanitarian catastrophe' in DR Congo's strife-torn Kasai region

UN experts sound alarm on mounting rights concerns in Puerto Rico in wake of Hurricane Maria

Tuberculosis world's top infectious killer; UN health agency calls for political action to stop spread

UN chief urges Security Council to 'be ambitious' in supporting Sahel anti-terror force

Asia-Pacific's economic gains must not undercut social and environmental goals, says UN regional forum

Carbon dioxide levels surge to new high in 2016, UN weather agency reports

UNICEF warns 1,800 unaccompanied refugee children in Greece need proper shelter, care

Government leaders, entrepreneurs set to gather in Bahrain for UN forum on sustainable development


29 October 2017

In Tehran, UN atomic chief says Iran implementing nuclear-related commitments


28 October 2017

Wrapping up visit to Yemen, UN aid chief stresses need for all parties to facilitate humanitarian work


27 October 2017

Don’t let security crisis overshadow human rights situation in DPR Korea – UN expert

Citing Uruguay’s commitment to human rights, UN rights chief urges more efforts to tackle violations

Action needed to stop violations of LGBT people’s rights worldwide, expert tells UN

Ethiopia begins civil registration for refugees – UN agencies

Security Council debate on ‘women, peace and security’ spotlights prevention and gender equality links

Linking past and present, audiovisual heritage is ‘part of our common history,’ UNESCO says on World Day

UN chief pays tribute to courage, resilience of people of Central African Republic

Rohingya crisis: UN agencies focus on improving access as overcrowded camps hamper response

Winter may be 'harsh blow' to vulnerable children in Middle East, UNICEF warns amid funding gap

Suffering of 350,000 civilians in rural Damascus 'an outrage' – UN rights chief

Headlines at a glance


26 October 2017

African regional consultations on UN global compact on migration begin in Ethiopia

Measles deaths fall, but world still far from eliminating disease – UN-backed report

UN envoy ‘confident’ Baghdad and Erbil can work hand in hand to overcome differences

UN chief stresses need to support Central African Republic’s peacebuilding strategy

‘Imagine the potential of one billion children;’ UNICEF urges investment as Africa’s youth population surges

UN-Americas action plan seeks to strengthen protection of human rights defenders in region

Crisis in Rakhine 'decades in the making' and reaches beyond Myanmar's borders – UN rights expert

Fresh round of intra-Syrian talks set for 28 November, UN mediator tells Security Council

Mali: Guterres strongly condemns deadly attack against UN mission convoy


25 October 2017

UN will accompany Haiti in shaping a sustainable future, deputy Mission chief says

UN Economic and Social Council urges ‘action now;’ long-term measures to tackle natural disasters

Poor maritime connectivity hurting weaker, smaller nations – UN report

In Saudi Arabia, UN envoy seeks to further initiatives to end violence in Yemen

Peru must place human rights at heart of development, urges UN rights chief

In Central African Republic, UN chief warns of religious divide, seeks global solidarity to rebuild country

Plausible that ‘attack or threat’ led to crash that killed former UN chief Hammarskjöld – new report

Migrants helped to return from Greece, reintegrate, start businesses back home – UN agency

Syria: UN health agency steps up services for thousands of people in Raqqa


24 October 2017

Meet Gladys Nkeh, a UN police officer in the Central African Republic

Security Council fails to extend mandate of panel investigating use of chemical weapons in Syria

UN urged to help countries devastated by recent natural disasters to 'build back better'

Eradication of polio 'once and for all' within reach – UN health agency

UN migration agency delivers hygiene kits to Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh

Widespread militia activity, political unrest drive millions from their homes in DR Congo, UN warns

INTERVIEW: Health care is a human right, senior UN official says; urges protection for medical workers

Ending child marriage in West and Central Africa could take 100 years, warns UNICEF

Don't just blame teachers when system is at fault, says UNESCO

Marking UN Day in Central African Republic, Secretary-General honours peacekeepers

Brazilian student wins Tokyo photo contest on UN Global Goals


23 October 2017

Central African Republic’s message to UN: ‘The only thing we want is peace’

Famine can be a war crime and should be prosecuted, says independent UN rights expert

Three multinationals join UN global network on disability inclusion

Road accidents in Africa among deadliest worldwide, UN official says, urging more action

Rohingya crisis: Donors pledge $344 million at UN-backed conference to support aid efforts

Wildlife conservation, sustainable development in spotlight at UN-backed conference

UN, African Union pledge to help Kenya ensure credible rerun of presidential poll

Headlines at a glance


21 October 2017

UN Security Council strongly condemns terrorist attack in Egypt

UN chief Guterres, US President Trump commit to work together to address common challenges


20 October 2017

‘Cycle of violence must end,’ says UN chief, condemning latest attacks in Afghanistan

UN rights experts urge Iran to immediately release British-Iranian citizen after fresh charges

Closing UN’s ‘Africa Week,’ Assembly President says continent’s vision getting close to reality

Rohingya crisis: UNICEF issues 'Child Alert,' outlines urgent action to save lives

Cities and local policies key to overcome hunger, stresses head of UN agency


19 October 2017

UN delivering coordinated humanitarian response in wake of Mogadishu bombings

INTERVIEW: Hurricane-hit Caribbean nations can build back better, says UN development official

Governments endorse UN-backed plan to tackle cancer, diabetes and other deadly diseases

UN migration chief urges more support for Rohingyas fleeing Myanmar or 'thousands will suffer'

Watchful of the situation in Raqqa, Syria, UN chief urges need to revive political process

Despite drop in under-five mortality rate, 7,000 newborns die every day – UN report

#MeToo movement stems from impunity and culture of silence, senior UN official writes

Africa's rapid urbanization can drive industrialization, says new UN report

Number of UN civilian casualties falls despite spike in direct attacks against the Organization – new report

Strong civil society can push back against 'major attack' on human rights, says senior UN rights official

In Blaustein lecture, UN rights chief rebukes notion that multilateralism is a threat in today's world


18 October 2017

With fast-growing youth population, Africa boasts enormous market potential – UN deputy chief

Iraq: Security Council voices concern over reported violence in Kirkuk

UN strongly condemns terrorist attacks across Afghanistan

With ‘cautious optimism,’ UN political official reports positive developments on Middle East peace

UN and partners launch campaign to tackle new fungus strain threatening world’s bananas

Iran: UN rights experts urge country to halt imminent execution of juvenile Amirhossein Pourjafar

UNICEF and partner agencies in South Sudan help reunite 5,000 children with families

Yemen: UNICEF warns conflict shutters one in 10 schools; teachers unpaid for a year

UN chief announces trip to Central African Republic, where crisis is 'far from media spotlight'


17 October 2017

UN health agency supports yellow fever immunization for 874,000 people in Nigeria

Myanmar: Plight of refugees focus of top UN political official's meetings

Libya: Smugglers holding refugees and migrants in deplorable conditions, say UN agencies

UN report outlines path towards closing gender gap, realizing reproductive health rights

Thousands of Rohingya refugees stranded near Bangladesh-Myanmar border – UN

On International Day, UN chief urges action to address root causes of poverty

South Sudan's leaders must pull country back from 'impending abyss,' UN peacekeeping chief

Headlines at a glance


16 October 2017

Secretary-General welcomes launch of new UN mission in Haiti

General Assembly elects new members to UN Human Rights Council

UN calls for global solidarity ahead of pledging conference on Rohingya refugee crisis

Kicking off ‘Africa Week’ at UN, Guterres says women and youth can unleash continent’s potential

UN envoy discusses implementation of intra-Palestinian agreement with Prime Minister Hamdallah

At UN event in Rome, Pope Francis urges action on climate change, conflicts to end global hunger

UN rights experts urge France to provide safe water, sanitation for migrants in ‘Calais Jungle’

Lift protest ban, protect judiciary and preserve civil society role, UN rights experts urge Kenya


15 October 2017

UN chief condemns Saturday's attacks in Mogadishu; commends responders

On International Day, UN highlights rural women's participation in sustainable, climate-resilient agricultural


14 October 2017

Parliamentary forum opens in Russia; discussions to include UN cooperation

UN in Somalia condemns 'barbaric' bombings in Mogadishu


13 October 2017

In Kyoto, Japanese comedians tackle UN Global Goals

Central African Republic: UN Special Adviser condemns incitement of violence and hatred

People’s lives continue to worsen, but they live with hope, says UN official in Ukraine

INTERVIEW: Haiti on path to stability, development thanks to UN mission, says envoy

Chile becomes latest nation to resettle Syrian refugees through UN-backed programme

Libya: UN agencies scale up response as fighting displaces thousands in Sabratha region

UN ramps up aid delivery amid surge of Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh

On International Day, UN forecasts 14 million people made homeless each year by disasters

UN rights office 'deeply concerned' over arrests of LGBT people in Azerbaijan, Egypt and Indonesia

UN chief strongly hopes 'breakthrough' accord on Iran's nuclear programme remains in place

Civilians who fled Mosul still vulnerable, need assistance – UN official


12 October 2017

Human rights challenges in Libya ‘massive, but not insurmountable,’ UN rights chief says after visit

In Geneva, UN Member States and experts discuss demographic, economic dimensions of migration

Relief aid is saving lives, but world must tackle root cause of famine: conflict – UN chief

Silencing opposition voices threatens Cambodian democracy – UN rights expert

UN and partners launch plan to stop transmission of bovine tuberculosis to humans

A robot’s ‘father’ discusses progress in artificial intelligence and reveals a future that’s closer than you think

INTERVIEW: Few global issues as urgent as tackling climate and disaster risks – UN official

In phone call, UN chief offers congratulations and support to Palestinian President

Disease outbreak ‘real and present danger’ UNICEF warns, launching latrine-building plan in Cox’s Bazar

Latin America and Caribbean falling off ‘zero hunger’ path towards 2030 – UN report

FEATURE: Images of the legacy of the UN peacekeeping mission in Haiti

UN chief Guterres welcomes peaceful elections in Liberia

Ahead of UN mission's closure, envoy reports greater stability, security in Haiti

US withdrawal from UNESCO 'loss for multilateralism,' says cultural agency's chief

Headlines at a glance


11 October 2017

New allegation of sexual abuse surfaces at UN mission in Central African Republic

Despite progress on voter registration, DR Congo faces challenges on election timeline – UN envoy

FEATURE: A woman’s strength is unlimited, says award-winning UN peacekeeper

UN chief proposes $5.4 billion budget for 2018-2019

At UN, robot Sophia joins meeting on artificial intelligence and sustainable development

Cutting greenhouse gases, reducing disaster risk, vital for sustainable development – UN envoy

'EmPOWER' girls before, during and after crises, UN says on International Day of the Girl Child

UN launches innovative plan to significantly cut new HIV infections

Attacks against Rohingya ‘a ploy’ to drive them away; prevent their return – UN rights chief

Youth obesity increases 10-fold in four decades, UN-backed study reveals


10 October 2017

Security Council condemns attack on UN mission base in DR Congo

Libya: Security Council endorses UN plan on restarting political process

Housing ‘most urgent need’ for hurricane-ravaged Dominica, UN agency reports

Creating a healthy workplace improves mental wellbeing and productivity – UN

Leaders ‘not interested’ in finding solution to Yemen crisis, UN envoy tells Security Council

UN agencies launch cholera immunization campaign for Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh

UN health agency establishes high-level commission to tackle noncommunicable diseases

Disaster risk outpaces resilience in Asia-Pacific, warns UN regional commission

New UN-led partnership to help curb unsustainable wildlife hunting, protect biodiversity

'The death penalty has no place in the 21st century' – UN chief Guterres


9 October 2017

UN Treaty ‘beginning of the end for nuclear weapons,’ say Nobel Peace Prize winners

UN concerned for safety of more than five million displaced in northern Iraq

On World Day, UN spotlights posts’ contributions to development

Global unemployment passes 200 million in 2017, UN labour agency reports

UN emergency response fund reaches annual goal of $450 million, but more needed

DR Congo: Two UN ‘blue helmets’ killed in attack in North Kivu

Rohingya refugee children perish as boat capsizes off Bangladesh – UN migration agency

Rural areas have potential to feed and employ 'younger, more crowded planet' – UN report

UNICEF warns of nutrition crisis affecting 165,000 children in Mali


8 October 2017

UN chief lauds Dominica's vision to become first climate-resilient nation after recent devastation


7 October 2017

In hurricane-stricken Barbuda, UN chief urges global solidarity, accelerated climate action

Headlines at a glance


6 October 2017

As Bubonic and Pneumonic plagues spread in Madagascar, UN health agency ramps up response

International Media Seminar discusses objectivity, role of social, traditional media in covering Israel-Palestine conflict

Mali: Security Council urges parties to adopt timeline for implementing peace agreement

UN study tackles violence against women in Arab region using economic model

Join global treaty to root out the scourge of illegal fishing, urges UN food security agency

September ‘deadliest month’ of 2017 for Syrians, UN relief official reports

Cameroon: UN rights office urges dialogue to address decades-long grievances

UN seeks more funds to assist Rohingya amid world's fastest growing refugee crisis

Group's Nobel Peace Prize win spotlights need to end 'nuclear nightmare' says UN chief

Central African Republic: More aid needed amid deteriorating security, UN relief official warns


5 October 2017

UN peacekeeping chief seeks Security Council support for speedy deployment of uniformed personnel

UN report reveals shocking levels of grave violations against children affected by conflicts

Mali continues to make progress, but swift action needed as civilians still face threats – UN envoy

Security Council authorizes UN Mission to verify truce between Colombian Government and ELN

Vegetable oils lift food prices in September; cereal prices down on bumper crop prospects

Security Council re-authorizes operations to disrupt migrant smuggling off coast of Libya

INTERVIEW: In fighting for girls’ education, UN advocate Malala Yousafzai finds her purpose

FEATURE: In Western Afghanistan, an ancient love of poetry thrives again

Asylum and refugee protection represent ‘humanity at its best,’ says senior UN official

Empower teachers; give them the freedom to teach, UN urges on World Day

Partnerships will play key role in future of work in Europe and Central Asia - UN labour agency

A year after Hurricane Matthew, Haiti's children still incredibly vulnerable to disasters – UNICEF


4 October 2017

Expert meeting at UN aspires to create ‘space’ for women in science and technology

Libya: UN Mission condemns deadly bombing in Misrata

Switzerland needs to do more to keep ‘dirty money’ at bay, urges UN expert

Rohingya refugees living in ‘dire’ conditions, senior UN officials warn, appealing for assistance

Counselling and dieting among new UN health agency guidelines on child obesity

UN chief urges world to implement Paris climate accord 'with greater ambition'

Sustainable cities key to implement SDGs, says head of UN regional forum


3 October 2017

Relief operation in storm-battered Dominica ‘going in the right direction,’ says UN official

In Bangladesh, UN aid chief urges scaling up response for Rohingya refugee crisis

Global Goals embraced by Japanese society, UN deputy chief says, wrapping up Tokyo visit

SDGs ‘take off’ in Nepal’s skies with UN development programme-airline partnership

Pioneer of work in women’s reproductive health appointed head of UN Population Fund

UN agriculture agency and World Bank launch new initiative to avert famine in Yemen

HIV-related stigma, discrimination prevent people from accessing health services – UN

UN and partners aim to slash 90 per cent of cholera deaths by 2030

Dire lack of winter funding puts millions of refugees in Middle East at risk, warns UN agency

Iraq: UN migration agency assists thousands displaced from west Anbar

UN agency alarmed by largest influx of Congolese refugees into Zambia in five years

Cameroon: UN Secretary-General urges dialogue to resolve grievances


2 October 2017

INTERVIEW: Global humanitarian needs have never been higher, says UN official

For Yemenis and migrants, protracted conflict an 'endless nightmare' – head of UN agency

World must step up protection for refugees, do more to solve conflict – UN agency chief

'Winner-takes-all' dynamics in digital economy could widen income gap – UN report

UNICEF urges child-centred budget decisions for rebuilding of quake-hit areas in Mexico

In Tokyo, UN deputy chief cites benefits of local-level social dialogue on sustainable development

Amid 'critical' resource shortage, UN agency cuts food rations for refugees in Kenya

'Nothing enduring can be built on violence,' UN Assembly President says, recalling words of Gandhi

As Rohingya crisis continues, UNICEF seeks funds to reach 720,000 children in need

Affordable housing key for development and social equality, UN says on World Habitat Day

UN human rights chief urges probe into violence during referendum in Catalonia

Headlines at a glance


1 October 2017

In Bangladesh, UN food relief agency chief urges support amid massive Rohingya influx

Tapping into talents of older persons can boost Global Goals, says UN on International Day


29 September 2017

In less than two weeks, 72 States sign UN voluntary compact on preventing sexual exploitation and abuse

UN Human Rights Council wraps current session, adopts texts on Myanmar, Yemen, Burundi

Aid community launches $31 million appeal for 'badly battered' Dominica

Half a million Rohingya arrive in Bangladesh; UN agencies rush to provide shelter, clean water

New UN Day honours unsung heroes who ensure diplomats are ‘on the same page’

UN health agency recommends large-scale deworming to improve children’s health

Over half of schools remain closed in epicentre of Boko Haram crisis in Nigeria – UNICEF


28 September 2017

UN chief urges all parties to refrain from acts that could escalate tension in Cameroon

Lake Chad Basin: Vulnerable people ‘a step away from starvation,’ says UN aid chief

Rohingya refugee crisis a ‘human rights nightmare,’ UN chief tells Security Council

World has 'every interest' in better managed migration – senior UN official

Major new UN report sets course towards ‘pollution-free planet’

FEATURE: See what happened when the world came together at the UN

DR Congo: UN mission deploys ‘blue helmets’ to protect civilians and refugees

At Security Council, top counter-terrorism officials stress ‘All of UN’ approach to tackle scourge

Horrific accounts of sexual violence against Rohingya ‘just tip of the iceberg’ – UN agency

UN maritime agency spotlights link between shipping and sustainable development

On World Day, UN announces global initiative to end deaths from dog-transmitted rabies by 2030

Some 25 million unsafe abortions occur each year, UN health agency warns


27 September 2017

Syrian parties should join next round of Geneva talks ‘without preconditions’ – UN envoy

France must bring counter-terrorism law in line with international rights obligations – UN experts

North Africa set to adopt five-year plan to boost youth employment – UN labour agency

At Security Council, UN official urges greater cooperation for more effective aviation security

Sustainable tourism can advance global development, UN agency highlights on World Day

UN rights office issues business standards on treatment of LGBTI employees; major companies on board

UNICEF expands relief efforts in Latin America and Caribbean after month of ‘relentless’ natural disasters

UN chief welcomes Saudi Arabia’s decision to lift ban on women drivers

'Time to stamp out human trafficking,' says Guterres; UN pledges action to eradicate 'heinous crime'

Colombia: New UN Mission begins operation; focus on reintegrating ex-fighters

Hanging of 42 prisoners in Iraq raises concern over flawed due process – UN rights chief

Headlines at a glance


26 September 2017

UN envoy condemns killing of Israeli security personnel by Palestinian in West Bank

PEACE VIGIL: UN Headlines: Sept 26 – Nov 10, 2017 from UN News ...: 10 November 2017 Accelerate climate action and raise ambition, urges UN chief Science and technology can provide solutions to ke...

Monday, September 11, 2017

#PRAY4PEACE: #Burma: #DalaiLama calls on Suu Kyi for peaceful end to #Rohingya crisis

"The Dalai Lama has urged Aung San Suu Kyi to find a peaceful solution to the crisis in Myanmar and expressed concerns about violence that have led around 300,000 Muslim Rohingya to flee the Buddhist-majority country. The top Buddhist leader wrote to Myanmar's de facto civilian leader, a fellow Nobel peace laureate, shortly after new violence erupted in Rakhine state in August. He urged her to "reach out to all sections of society" to try to resolve the crisis in Rakhine, where the Rohingya, a stateless Muslim minority, have endured decades of persecution. "Questions that are put to me suggest that many people have difficulty reconciling what appears to be happening to Muslims there with Myanmar’s reputation as a Buddhist country," he wrote in the letter, seen by AFP on Monday. "I appeal to you and your fellow leaders to reach out to all sections of society to try to restore friendly relations throughout the population in a spirit of peace and reconciliation." The Dalai Lama is the latest Nobel peace laureate to speak out against the violence, which the UN special rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar says may have left more than 1,000 dead, most of them Rohingya. Nobel laureates Malala Yousafzai and Archbishop Desmond Tutu have also urged her to intervene on behalf of the Rohingya. "If the political price of your ascension to the highest office in Myanmar is your silence, the price is surely too steep," said Tutu, who became the moral voice of South Africa after helping dismantle apartheid there. Myanmar's population is overwhelmingly Buddhist and there is widespread hostility toward the Rohingya, who are denied citizenship and labeled illegal "Bengali" immigrants. Buddhist nationalists, led by firebrand monks, have operated an Islamophobic campaign calling for them to be pushed out of the country. The Dalai Lama said he had spoken to Suu Kyi in the past about religious tensions in her country and was urging her again to curb the violence. "As a fellow Buddhist and Nobel laureate I am appealing to you and your colleagues once more to find a lasting and humane solution to this festering problem," he wrote."

Source: AFP News: Dalai Lama calls on Suu Kyi for a peaceful end to Rohingya crisis:

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Wednesday, September 6, 2017

#Pray4Peace: Pope prays for peace in Colombia, Venezuela

Pope prays for peace in Colombia, Venezuela: "Pope Francis landed in Colombia on Wednesday to plead for lasting peace in a country moving towards the end of a half-century war, and praying for stability in its crisis-stricken neighbor Venezuela. The 80-year-old Argentine pontiff descended the steps of his plane at a military airport in Bogota and was greeted by Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and a crowd waving white handkerchiefs. Children in white outfits and red neckerchiefs performed a Colombian "cumbia" dance as Francis greeted the crowd, including civilians and army veterans injured in the conflict. Smiling, he climbed aboard a white Popemobile which took him through the city center amid deafening cheers from admirers lining the route to the papal mission, the Nunciatura. There he recited a Hail Mary and a blessing to assembled youths, who responded with a rap and breakdancing. Francis had called ahead of his trip for a "stable and lasting peace" in Colombia. On arrival, he praised local people for their "heroism." "Continue on the path that you have been brave enough to start, which is called heroism," he told the young people. "Don't let yourselves be beaten, don't let yourselves be fooled. Do not lose joy. Do not lose hope." - Peace and concord - Francis's trip follows the disarmament of Colombia's biggest rebel force, the FARC, and a ceasefire by the last remaining guerrilla force, the ELN. The pope supports Santos in his drive for a "complete peace" to end Latin America's longest civil war. But Francis's first statements after starting the trip concerned Venezuela, where a political and economic crisis has caused food shortages, deadly unrest and calls for President Nicolas Maduro to quit. Francis sent a telegram with "cordial greetings" to Maduro and the Venezuelan people, "praying that all in the nation may promote paths of solidarity, justice and concord." - 'Pope, help Venezuela' - Francine Howard, Colombia coordinator for major Venezuelan opposition party Popular Will, said her compatriots would attend the pope's public masses with signs reading "Pope, help Venezuela." But with respect to Francis's visit, "there is one thing that has made Venezuelans uncomfortable, and that is the call for dialogue" with Maduro's government, she warned. Vatican-mediated talks between Venezuela's government and opposition last year collapsed with the sides accusing each other of bad faith. - Colombian reconciliation - Francis's five-day tour will see him meet people who have suffered on various sides in the Colombian war, Latin America's longest conflict. The violence has left 260,000 people confirmed dead, 60,000 unaccounted for and seven million displaced. "The Holy Father is now in Colombian territory. He has come for a very special purpose: to push us to take the first step to reconciling with one another," Santos told reporters after welcoming Francis. - Divisive peace deal - Despite the pope's blessing, the peace process has been fraught with division. Critics of the accord with the FARC say the rebels got off too lightly. Colombians narrowly rejected that peace deal in a referendum last year. Francis then tried unsuccessfully to mediate between Santos and the lead opponent of the accord, conservative leader Alvaro Uribe. A reworked version was later pushed through Congress despite Uribe's ongoing resistance. - Faith in peace - On Thursday Francis will meet with Santos and Venezuelan Catholic leaders. He will then make daily excursions by plane to the cities of Villavicencio, Medellin and Cartagena. In Villavicencio, he will preside over a prayer for national reconciliation with victims of violence, former guerrilla members and ex-military fighters. Among those gathered to see the pope arrive in Bogota was Alva Marina Quinones, member of an association for people hurt or bereaved in the conflict. "I know that the pope can sense our history, so I have a lot of faith that his arrival here will change us and speed up the process" of peace, she said."

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Tuesday, September 5, 2017

#Pray4Peace: #Nigeria: UNICEF warns use of children as 'human bombs' is on the rise in north-east Nigeria

“Since the beginning of January 2017, 83 children had been used as so-called human bombs, 55 being girls, most of them often under 15 years old,” UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) spokesperson Marixie Mercado told reporters at today's regular press briefing in Geneva. “The 27 other children were boys and one was an infant strapped to a girl,” she continued. She pointed out that since 2014, children have been repeatedly used in this way, calling the number of children used so far this year alone was “already four times higher than what it was for all of 2016.” “Children used as human bombs are, above all, victims, not perpetrators,” Ms. Mercado underscored. She went on to say that the use of children in such attacks has a further impact of creating suspicion and fear of children released, rescued, or escaped from Boko Haram. “They face rejection when they tried to reintegrate their communities which compound their suffering,” she explained. Ms. Mercado painted a dire picture, describing the situation as a massive displacement and malnutrition crisis – “a deadly combination for children.” She said that �� per cent of the persons displaced by the insurgencies in north-east Nigeria are children, and the vast majority of them in Borno state, where most of those attacks are taking place.” North-east Nigeria is one of the four countries or regions facing the spectre of famine, with up to 450,000 children at risk of severe acute malnutrition this year, according to UNICEF. UNICEF is providing psychosocial support for children who had been held by Boko Haram and the agency is also working with families and communities to foster the acceptance of returned children – including through social and economic reintegration support. As of July, UNICEF has supported more than 3,000 children and 1,200 women. It also backed reconciliation activities in north-east Nigeria led by communities, religious leaders, and influential women to help promote tolerance, acceptance, and reintegration. Noting that a $1 billion dollar appeal to minimally help sustain people in Nigeria is only 60 per cent funded, Jens Laerke, Spokesperson for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, told reporters at the briefing that the situation for civilians in the area was extremely grave. Humanitarian Coordinator Edward Kallon stressed that women and children in Borno state face grave human rights violations, including sexual and gender-based violence. He noted that, since the start of the conflict in 2009, more than 20,000 people had been killed with thousands of women and girls abducted and abused. In total, 8.5 million people in the worst-affected states of Borno, namely Adamawa and Yobe, need of humanitarian assistance. In its eighth year, this crisis shows no sign of abating, said Mr. Laerke. Food insecurity affects 5.2 million people, some of whom are on the brink of famine."

Source: United Nations News Centre - UNICEF warns use of children as 'human bombs' is on the rise in north-east Nigeria: "22 August 2017 – The United Nations children agency today expressed extreme concern at the appalling increase in the cruel and calculated use of children, especially girls, as “human bombs” in north-east Nigeria.

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#Pray4Peace: #Venezuela: Human rights violations indicate repressive policy of Venezuelan authorities

"The report notes that the generalized and systematic use of excessive force during demonstrations and the arbitrary detention of protestors and perceived political opponents indicate that these were not the acts of isolated officials. The report calls on the UN Human Rights Council to consider taking measures to prevent the human rights situation in Venezuela from worsening. Venezuela is currently a Council member. Mass street demonstrations began in the country in April. Tensions between the Government and the opposition reached a new high about a month ago when President Nicolás Maduro convened elections for the so-called Constituent Assembly, which could replace the current legislative body, the National Assembly. The report indicates that of the 124 deaths linked to the protests being investigated by the Attorney General's Office as of 31 July, the security forces were reportedly responsible for 46 and pro-Government armed groups, known as armed colectivos, for 27. Responsibility for the remaining 51 deaths has not yet been determined. According to reliable estimates from a local NGO, more than 5,000 people were detained since 1 April, with more than 1,000 reportedly still held as of 31 July. At least 609 civilians arrested in the context of protests were presented before military tribunals. The report calls on the Government to halt arbitrary detention and the use of military courts to try civilians. The report documents attacks against journalists and media workers by security forces that were apparently aimed at preventing them from covering demonstrations. “Demonstrators and journalists were labelled by high-level authorities as 'enemies' and 'terrorists' – words that did little to counter, and may even have contributed to, the climate of violence and polarization,” the High Commissioner said. Warning that amid continuing economic and social crises and rising political tensions, there is a grave risk the situation in Venezuela will deteriorate further, Mr. Zeid encouraged the Government to follow up on the recommendations made in the report and to use its findings as guidelines to seek truth and justice for the victims of human rights violations and abuses."

Source: United Nations News Centre - Human rights violations indicate repressive policy of Venezuelan authorities – UN report: "30 August 2017 – Extensive human rights violations and abuses have been committed in the wake of anti-Government protests in Venezuela and point to “the existence of a policy to repress political dissent and instill fear in the population to curb demonstrations,” a report by the United Nations human rights office has found. The policies pursued by the authorities in their response to the protests have been at the cost of Venezuelans' rights and freedoms,” said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein in a news release issued today.

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#Pray4Peace: #Myanmar: UN expert urges efforts to break 'worsening cycle of violence' in Rakhine

“The worsening cycle of violence is of grave concern and must be broken urgently,” said the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in Myanmar, Yanghee Lee, in a news release issued today from the Office of UN High Commissioners for Human Rights (OHCHR).

Tens of thousands of Rohingya Muslims are now reported to be fleeing towards Bangladesh.

While the world's Muslim communities celebrated Eid al-Adha, the Rohingya remained in a precarious situation, not knowing their future or the fate of their relatives, she said.

Latest estimates from UN sources suggest more than 27,000 people have crossed into Bangladesh in the area around Cox's Bazar, while 20,000 more remain stranded between the two countries. The number continues to grow.

The Special Rapporteur noted concerns over both extremist attacks and the major security operations undertaken in response to the attacks.

“I am concerned that these events will derail efforts to address the root causes of the systematic discrimination and recurrent violence in Rakhine State,” said the Special Rapporteur.

She went on to remind the authorities of their human rights obligations to give equal protection to people from all communities, whether from attacks by extremists or excessive action from the security forces.

“I am saddened to receive reports that, while the authorities are helping Rakhine and other communities living in affected townships evacuate to safer locations, this assistance is not being extended to the Rohingya Muslims,” she said.

Echoing findings in the final report by the Rakhine Advisory Commission led by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, Ms. Lee said that if human rights concerns are not properly addressed and if people remain politically and economically marginalized, then northern Rakhine may provide fertile ground for radicalization, with people becoming increasingly vulnerable to recruitment by extremists.

This statement has been endorsed by the UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, Ahmed Shaheed, and the Special Rapporteur on minority issues, Fernand de Varennes.

Special Rapporteurs and independent experts are appointed by the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a specific human rights theme or a country situation. The positions are honorary and the experts are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work."

Source: United Nations News Centre - Myanmar: UN expert urges efforts to break 'worsening cycle of violence' in Rakhine: "31 August 2017 – A United Nations human rights expert has expressed alarm at the deteriorating situation in Myanmar's Rakhine State, affecting not just the Rakhine Buddhist and Rohingya Muslim populations but also other communities.

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#Pray4Peace: #Afghanistan: UN mission confirms at least 44 civilians killed, injured in latest airstrikes

"At least 28 women and children were killed and an additional 16 injured in air strikes this week in Afghanistan, the United Nations political mission in the country said in initial findings of its probe into the deaths. The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) urged authorities to ensure independent, impartial and prompt investigations of both incidents, and to compensate the victims. “I am deeply saddened to hear that women and children have once again suffered so terribly from the conflict,” said Tadamichi Yamamoto, the Secretary-General's Special Representative for Afghanistan and head of UNAMA. “This is unacceptable. All parties must live up to their obligations to take all feasible measures to protect civilians.” The incidents took place in Herat, a western province bordering Iran and Turkmenistan, and in Logar, which is south of Kabul on the eastern side of the country. UNAMA cited a news release issued by United States Forces in Afghanistan that it is aware of an incident in the Logar area and that they have opened an investigation into it. The air strikes reportedly targeted Anti-Government Elements who had used a civilian compound to attack aircraft. The UN mission said that it will continue its independent work to establish the facts as to what happened, including allegations that civilians were used as shields. More civilians have been killed or injured in aerial operations in the first half of this year than in 2016, according to UNAMA. Initial figures show at least 232 civilians were injured or killed, a 43 per cent increase over 2016, and the majority of the victims have been women and children."

Source: United Nations News Centre - Afghanistan: UN mission confirms at least 44 civilians killed, injured in latest airstrikes: "1 September 2017 –

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#Pray4Peace: #Iraq: ISIL targeting civilians to 'avenge' loss of Tal Afar

"At least 125 civilians were killed and another 188 injured in terrorist related acts in Iraq during the month of August, according to the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI). The casualty figures show that Baghdad was the worst affected area, and do not include casualty figures from ongoing fighting in Anbar province. The overall casualty figures are lower than in previous months, where violence spiked above 2,000 in October 2016. In a separate statement, Mr. Kubiš said that “hopeful days lie ahead for Iraq,” noting military victories against terrorists, including in the northern Iraqi city of Tal Afar which Iraqi forces yesterday declared liberated from ISIL. Mr. Kubiš said this Eid al-Adha, thoughts and prayers go to all the martyrs and fighters in the liberating forces, and to those who provide support and are affected – including the millions of displaced Iraqis. “On this Eid, the Feast of Sacrifice that Muslims celebrate worldwide, the Iraqi people who have sacrificed dearly deserve to live in peace, dignity, and prosperity,” he said. The senior UN official added that sustainable peace in the country can only be secured through inclusive solutions, addressing grievances, needs, and aspirations of the Iraqi people."

Source: United Nations News Centre - Iraq: ISIL targeting civilians to 'avenge' loss of Tal Afar, UN envoy says: "1 September 2017 – Iraq: ISIL targeting civilians to 'avenge' loss of Tal Afar, UN envoy says Fighters from the Islamic State (ISIL) are indiscriminately targeting civilians to avenge for their loss of Tal Afar, the top United Nations political representative in Iraqi today said, condemning the latest attack in Baghdad. “Da'esh terrorists have shown an absolute disregard for human life,” said Ján Kubiš, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Iraq, using the Arabic acronym for ISIL. “However, the patience and resilience of the Iraqi people have defeated the terrorists' aim in breaking their unity,” he added.

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#Pray4Peace: #NEPAL #INDIA #BANGLADESH: 16 million children affected by massive flooding in South Asia

"Millions of children have seen their lives swept away by these devastating floods,” said Jean Gough, UNICEF Regional Director for South Asia. “Children have lost their homes, schools and even friends and loved ones. There is a danger the worst could still be to come as rains continue and flood waters move south,” she added. UNICEF is on the ground working in close coordination with respective governments and humanitarian partners in the South Asian countries to scale up its responses and respond to immediate needs of affected children and their families. Since mid-August, there have been at least 1,288 reported deaths, with over 45 million people estimated to be affected. Many areas remain inaccessible due to damage to roads, bridges, railways, and airports. The most urgent needs for children are clean water, hygiene supplies to prevent the spread of disease, food supplies and safe places in evacuation centers for children to play. “Massive damage to school infrastructure and supplies also mean hundreds of thousands of children may miss weeks or months of school,” said Gough. “Getting children back into school is absolutely critical in establishing a sense of stability for children during times of crisis and provides a sense of normality when everything else is being turned upside down.” In Bangladesh alone, more than 8 million people have been affected by flooding, including around 3 million children. An estimated 696,169 houses have been damaged or destroyed and 2,292 primary and community schools have been damaged by high water. There have already been more than 13,035 cases of water-borne diseases in the country. In Nepal, 1.7 million people, including 680,000 children, have been affected with 352,738 displaced from their homes. More than 185,126 homes have been damaged or destroyed in addition to 1,958 schools, affecting the education of 253,605 children. In India, four states in northern India have been extensively affected by the flooding, affecting over 31 million people including 12.33 million children. Some 805,183 houses are either partially or fully damaged and 15,455 schools have been damaged, disrupting the education of nearly one million students. Further heavy rains in Mumbai resulted in at least five deaths by drowning and three people including two children died due to house collapse."

Source: United Nations News Centre - 16 million children affected by massive flooding in South Asia – UNICEF: "2 September 2017 – The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) said today that an estimated 16 million children are in urgent need of life-saving support in the wake of torrential monsoon rains and catastrophic flooding in Nepal, India and Bangladesh.

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#Pray4Peace: DPRK: UN political chief urges Security Council to 'remain united and take appropriate action against nuclear explosive test conducted by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)

“The latest serious developments require a comprehensive response in order to break the cycle of provocations from the DPRK,” said Jeffrey Feltman, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, in an emergency Council meeting, noting that “such a response must include wise and bold diplomacy to be effective.”

Mr. Feltman, however, stressed the importance of responding to humanitarian needs regardless of the political situation as the people of the DPRK rely on the international community to provide humanitarian assistance.

Today's meeting was the Council's second emergency meeting on the DPRK in less than a week and the tenth time the body has met to discuss the DPRK this year.

The latest serious developments require a comprehensive response in order to break the cycle of provocations from the DPRK
On the details of Sunday's event, Mr. Feltman said that the DPRK characterized it as a “perfect success in the test of a hydrogen bomb for intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM)” and as marking “a very significant occasion in attaining the final goal of completing the state nuclear force.”

He said that it is evident the yield of the device was larger than any of the DPRK's previous nuclear tests and experts have estimated a yield of between 50 and 100 kilotons, or on average more than five times more powerful than the weapon detonated over Hiroshima and at the low end of the yield of a modern thermonuclear weapon.

Citing a DPRK article that stated the hydrogen bomb was “a multi-functional thermonuclear nuke with great destructive power which can be detonated even at high altitudes for super-powerful EMP [electromagnetic pulse] attack,” Mr. Feltman said that “this was a rare reference by the DPRK to the use of EMP,” which, triggered by a nuclear weapon, would aim for widespread damage and disruption to electricity grids and sensitive electronics, including on satellites.

He also drew attention to reports today indicating that the DPRK may be preparing new ballistic missile tests.

“We are alarmed by this dangerous provocation,” he said, noting that Secretary-General António Guterres reiterated his call on the DPRK leadership to cease such acts and to comply fully with its international obligations under relevant Security Council resolutions.

“We will continue to carefully follow the developments and remain in close coordination with the concerned international organizations, Members of the Council and other governments concerned,” he concluded.

United States Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said that her delegation will table a draft resolution on strengthening sanctions against the DPRK."

'via Blog this' Source: United Nations News Centre - UN political chief urges Security Council to 'remain united, take appropriate action' on DPR Korea: "4 September 2017 – The top United Nations political official today urged the Security Council to remain united and take appropriate action against Sunday's nuclear explosive test conducted by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

Sunday, August 13, 2017

#Pray4Peace in #Guam as North Korea deadline looms

The Catholic faithful in Guam led prayers for peace Sunday in the shadow of North Korean missile threat, with the western Pacific island's archbishop appealing for "prudence" amid an escalating war of words between the US and Pyongyang.
The largely Catholic territory should pray for a "just resolution of differences, and prudence in both speech and action", said Archbishop Michael Byrnes, echoing a flurry of international calls for US President Donald Trump to show greater rhetorical restraint.
A "prayers for peace" lunchtime rally in the capital Hagatna drew around 100 people. But despite Guam having become the centre of a threatened showdown between the United States and nuclear-armed North Korea, many said they were unfazed.
"I am really not scared because if it's our time to die it is our time to die," added Sita Manjaras, 62, a retired teacher from Tamuning.
Father Mike Crisostomo said their response to the threat was to have faith and pray.
"This goes to show to the other worlds, to the other nations and the countries, that Guam maybe small, our faith and our trust is big," he said.
Dora Salazar, 82, who made the 14 kilometre (nine mile) journey from the village of Mangilao for the peace rally, said she was praying for the North's leader Kim Jong-Un.
"We pray that God will touch his heart," she said.
- 'Fire and fury' -
In response to Trump's threat of "fire and fury", North Korea has pledged to have plans ready in a matter of days to launch an "enveloping fire" of missiles towards Guam.
At the island's main church, the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica, Father Paul Gofigan told the congregation to be prepared in case North Korea does launch its missiles.
"What would you do if you have only 14 minutes left? The thing to do is pray and reflect," he said
"Prioritise your life. This is a wake-up call, no matter what happens".
Trump has been engaged all week in verbal sparring with the North over its weapons and missile programs, declaring Friday that the US military is "locked and loaded."
He has told Guam Governor Eddie Calvo that US military was prepared to "ensure the safety and security of the people of Guam."
While 85 percent of Guam's 162,000 residents are Catholic, with temperatures hovering around 31 degrees Celsius (88 Fahrenheit) many locals and tourists preferred to head to the beach rather than church.
"No one feels threatened. Should we? Definitely not," said Australian tourist Kirstie Bridgement.
"Guam is the most protected island. We feel safer than ever."
The island houses two large US military bases and is home to more than 6,000 US military personnel.
American tourist Bryan Sanchez said it was difficult to understand the threat "especially with the way culture is like with memes, anything is going to be turned into a joke.
"People just aren't, I guess, as aggressive or too worried about that kind of stuff in our day and age."
Meanwhile, two community groups opposed to the presence of the US military in Guam, Independent Guahan and Prutehi Litekyan, have organised a "People for Peace" rally in Hagatna on Monday.
"What's happening in Guam is a global issue, because if our island is attacked, it could be the catalyst for a global catastrophe," Kenneth Gofigan Kuper of the Independent Guahan movement said.
The rally organisers said in a statement that "Guam has been forced in the middle of other nations' conflicts, particularly as an unincorporated territory of the United States.
"As a result, many of Guam's people know the painful and horrific effects of war as World II survivors and as veterans.
"Thus, the members of Independent Guahan and Prutehi Litekyan, both organisations dedicated to the decolonisation and demilitarisation of Guam, feel it is imperative for the community to stand together in a call for peace."

Guam residents pray for peace as North Korea deadline looms:

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Be the Peace Leader

Be the Peace Leader
Pray for Peace by Amb Zara Jane Juan

Come & Join Inter-Faith Prayers & Inter-Cultural Dialogue for Peace

Come! Share your Peace! - Ambassador Zara Jane Juan, Sailing for Peace

2012 Video International Day of Peace Vigil by Sailing for Peace

Sailing for Peace Worldwide Peace Vigil

Sailing for Peace Worldwide Peace Vigil
Prayer Vigil for Vatican as Pope expresses sorrow over terrorist attacks and prayed that God will sustain all men of goodwill who courageously roll up their sleeves to deal with the plague of terrorism and this bloodstain which is gripping the world in a shadow of fear and bewilderment

Amb. Zara Jane Juan, Peace Ambassador

Amb. Zara Jane Juan, Peace Ambassador
I choose to be a Missionary of the Interfaith, Interracial, Intercultural Sailing for Peace Program inspired and guided by the discipline and life of the Virgin Mary of the Catholic Church. I am a Catholic, a Lady Datin of the Muslims, a Buddhist in my Healthy Lifestyle and a Hindu in Purifying my Soul. With Free Thinking and Scientific Approach to my Peace Work, my life on the over-all is a whirlwind of Faith and Fate. I refuse donations to my peace work to prevent corruption but rather I decided to live a very simple so that I can fund it personally through my own personal income as Professional Resource Speaker, Author, Visual Artist, Playwright and Director

JESUS CHRIST - 7 LAST WORDS - Lenten Recollection for Christians