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Prohibition of enforced disappearance is ‘absolute,’ UN declares, urging action to ramp-up searches

30 August 2015

Relatives of abducted children speak out for the disappeared in Lamwo district, northern Uganda. Photo: IRIN/Philippa Croome

Marking the fourth International Day of Enforced Disappearances, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon denounced the “alarming” number of acts by that are tantamount to enforced disappearances and appealed to all Member States to ratify or accede to the legal instrument prohibiting such acts.

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Top tennis player Novak Djokovic takes centre court for children as new UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador

UN News Centre – 26 August 2015

Novak Djokovic, the world’s top ranked tennis player, was today appointed Goodwill Ambassador by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), after having served as the agency’s Serbia Ambassador and promoting children’s rights within his own private foundation.

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UN food relief now reaching more than 400,000 flood victims in Myanmar

UN News Centre – 26 August 2015

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is now delivering rice, beans, cooking oil and salt to more than 400,000 people affected by flooding in Myanmar and “reachable only on foot, after floods and landslides destroyed roads across the country,” the agency said today.

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Europe’s response to migrant crisis is not working, warns UN rights expert

UN News Centre – 25 August 2015

The European Union should establish a human rights-based, coherent and comprehensive migration policy which makes mobility its central asset, a United Nations expert today advocated, assuring is the only way in which the EU can reclaim its border, effectively combat smuggling and empower migrants.

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Teaching history of slave trade reinforces rights of all peoples, UN declares on Day of Remembrance

UN News Centre – 23 August 2015

By teaching, communicating and transmitting the history of the slave trade the world can reinforce the rights and the dignity of people of African descent and, together, fight against all forms of racism and discrimination, the head of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization said on the International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition.

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‘Horrified’ by human suffering in Syria, UN relief chief urges all parties to protect civilians

UN News Centre – 17 August 2015

Horrified by the "total disrespect" for civilian life in Syria, as evidenced by yesterday's airstrikes on a market in Douma, the top United Nations humanitarian official today warned that the protracted conflict in the country not only severely affects the lives of millions of people, but also threatens the stability of the entire region and beyond.

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Central African Republic: UN releases funds for humanitarian aid amid ongoing crisis

UN News Centre – 12 August 2015

The United Nations has allocated over $13 million dollars for the immediate distribution of life-saving assistance targeting those affected by the ongoing violence in the Central African Republic (CAR), the Organization's relief arm reported today.

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UN chief urges greater efforts to improve health and well-being of indigenous peoples

UN News Centre – 09 August 2015

Birth registration for indigenous children takes place in the Republic of Congo, where they suffer disproportionately from the lack of nutritious food and health services  Photo: UNICEF/NYHQ2009-0832/Williams

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on the international community to commit to do more to improve the health and well-being of indigenous peoples, who face a wide range of challenges from inadequate sanitation and housing to high rates of diabetes, drug and alcohol abuse.

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Donors urged to meet critical funding shortfall faced by UN agency assisting Palestinian refugees

UN News Centre – 05 August 2015

Voicing concern over the financial situation confronting the United Nations agency assisting Palestine refugees, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today called on all donors to urgently ensure adequate and sustainable financing for vital services as soon as possible.

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Ceasefire needed as ‘humanitarian catastrophe’ leaves millions suffering in Yemen – UN Relief Chief

UN News Centre – 29 July 2015

The conflict in Yemen has brought “appalling damage” on an already suffering people, the top United Nations humanitarian official told the Security Council today, pressing the international community to redouble its efforts to secure a pause in the fighting respected by all parties, thus providing space for relief workers to reach desperate civilians and for the warring sides to agree a durable ceasefire and, ultimately, a political solution.

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Yemen: first UN food aid arrives in Aden as intense fighting takes ‘serious toll’ on civilians

UN News Centre – 22 July 2015

In “a major breakthrough,” the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced that its first ship since conflict erupted in Yemen in March berthed today in the port of Aden after repeated attempts to reach huge numbers of increasingly desperate people and as intense fighting continues to take a serious toll on civilians.

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On Mandela Day, UN joins call to promote community service and inspire change

UN News Centre – 19 July 2015

Nelson Mandela, then Deputy President of the African National Congress of South Africa, raises his fist in the air while addressing the Special Committee Against Apartheid in the General Assembly Hall. UN Photo/P. Sudhakaran


18 July 2015 – The 70th anniversary of the United Nations' founding provides the perfect opportunity to reflect on the life and work of Nelson Mandela with a call to action for helping others, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon affirmed today as he joined the world gathers in marking Nelson Mandela International Day.

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Syria: deputy UN relief chief urges political solution amid ‘extremely challenging’ humanitarian cri

UN News Centre – 30 June 2015

29 June 2015 – Humanitarian access to civilians trapped by the Syrian conflict is being increasingly obstructed by the ongoing fighting in the country and a shortfall in critical funding, a senior United Nations relief official warned today.

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Nepal: in earthquakes’ wake, UNICEF speeds up response to prevent child trafficking

UN News Centre – 22 June 2015

22 June 2015 – At least 245 children have been intercepted from being trafficked and unnecessarily or illegally placed in children's care homes since the first earthquake hit Nepal almost two months ago, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) has reported.

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Syria: UN special envoy arrives in Damascus for talks with Government officials

UN News Centre – 15 June 2015

The United Nations Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura has begun a visit to the capital, Damascus, following an invitation by the Government to visit the country, according to a spokesman for the Organization.

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Ban condemns South Sudan’s decision to expel UN humanitarian coordinator

UN News Centre – 01 June 2015

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today condemned the Government of South Sudan's decision to expel his Deputy Special Representative and the United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator in the country, Toby Lanzer.

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Syria: UN envoy condemns death of at least 70 civilians in Aleppo

UN News Centre – 31 May 2015

The United Nations Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has strongly condemned the death of at least 70 civilians in Syria's northern Aleppo province by barrel bombs dropped from government helicopters.

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Ban praises Ireland’s ‘compassionate leadership’ on migration and refugees

UN News Centre – 26 May 2015

As he wrapped up a visit to Ireland today, the Secretary-General congratulated the country on its “fruitful and strong” relationship with the United Nations over the past 60 years and looked forward to a continued partnership as the world tackled several significant challenges.

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Burundi: UN chief condemns killing of opposition politician as tensions in country rise

UN News Centre – 24 May 2015

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has condemned the killing of a Burundian politician and his bodyguard in a move that threatens to further destabilize the country amid simmering political tensions and a growing humanitarian crisis.

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2015 ‘year of fear’ for children, UN education envoy says, urging schools funding in crisis zones

UN News Centre – 21 May 2015

The United Nations education envoy told journalists in New York today that “shocking figures” relating to the position of children in emergency situations underlined the need for a new humanitarian fund to ensure the education of millions of children.

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