Category Archives: UN Reports

‘Unspeakable atrocities’ reported by UN-mandated human rights inquiry on DPR Korea

Chair of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea Michael Kirby presents an oral update during the 24th Session of the Human Rights Council. Photo: Jean-Marc Ferré

Chair of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea Michael Kirby presents an oral update during the 24th Session of the Human Rights Council. Photo: Jean-Marc Ferré

17 September 2013 – The head of the United Nations-appointed inquiry into human rights violations in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) reported today that testimony heard so far by his team pointed to widespread and serious abuses, including abductions and torture, as well as “unspeakable atrocities” in detention camps.

“What we have seen and heard so far – the specificity, detail and shocking character of the personal testimony – appears without doubt to demand follow-up action by the world community, and accountability on the part of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea,” said Michael Kirby, chair of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in the DPRK. Continue reading

‘Clear and convincing’ evidence of chemical weapons use in Syria, UN team reports

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon speaks to reporters following Security Council consultations on Syria. Photo: UN Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon speaks to reporters following Security Council consultations on Syria. Photo: UN Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

16 September 2013 – A United Nations team probing the possible use of chemical weapons in Syria has found “clear and convincing evidence” that Sarin gas was used in an incident that occurred on 21 August in the Ghouta area on the outskirts of Damascus in which hundreds of people were reportedly killed.

“The report makes for chilling reading,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told reporters following a closed-door briefing to the Security Council on the team’s work, which concludes that on the basis of evidence obtained during its investigation, “chemical weapons have been used in the ongoing conflict between the parties in [Syria], also against civilians, including children, on a relatively large scale.” Continue reading

Report by the United Nations Mission to Investigate Allegations of the Use of Chemical Weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic

New York, 16 September 2013 – The Spokesperson can confirm that the report by the United Nations Mission to Investigate Allegations of the Use of Chemical Weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic has been sent to Member States and is now available online at: http://www.un.org/disarmament/
The document is available PDF format below: Secretary-General report on Chemical Weapons investigation Continue reading

Cannabis production rises in Afghanistan despite decline in cultivation – UN report

Cannabis plants. UN Photo/John Robaton

Cannabis plants. UN Photo/John Robaton

10 September 2013 – While the total area of Afghan farmland used for cannabis cultivation fell by 17 percent in 2012, there was still an eight per cent rise in the overall production of cannabis compared to 2011, according to a report released today by the United Nations drug and crime agency and the country’s Ministry of Counter-Narcotics.

The report, Afghanistan: Survey of Commercial Cannabis Cultivation and Production 2012, released today in the Afghan capital, Kabul, noted that the main reason for the increase in production despite the decline in cultivation was better yields by the cannabis, locally known as ‘garda,’ compared to the previous year. Continue reading

Transnational organized crime on the rise in Eastern Africa, warns UN report

Transnational Organized Crime in Eastern Africa: A Threat Assessment. Credit: UNODC

Transnational Organized Crime in Eastern Africa: A Threat Assessment. Credit: UNODC

4 September 2013 – Organized criminal activities such as migrant smuggling, ivory trafficking and maritime piracy are increasingly pressing threats in Eastern Africa and must be tackled through a range of measures both within the region and in the markets where illicit goods will end up, according to a United Nations report released today.

The report, Transnational Organized Crime in Eastern Africa: A Threat Assessment, was produced by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and highlights the principal crime threats facing the region as well as their costs to society. Continue reading

Water cooperation must be a priority on sustainable development agenda – UN official

A villager takes extra precautions to keep her supply of water clean in Niger. Photo: UNDP Niger/Rabo Yahaya

A villager takes extra precautions to keep her supply of water clean in Niger. Photo: UNDP Niger/Rabo Yahaya

UN – Water cooperation at national and global levels is essential to achieve sustainable development and ensure millions of people have access to this precious resource, a senior United Nations official stressed today at a conference in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

“Not only is the world experiencing explosive growth in the demand for water resources, but water waste and pollution increasingly threaten the integrity of aquatic and agro ecosystems vital for life and food security,” the Associate Administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP), Rebeca Grynspan, said at the High-Level International Conference on Water Cooperation. Continue reading

World population projected to reach 9.6 billion by 2050 – UN report

The world’s population grew to seven billion in 2011. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

The world’s population grew to seven billion in 2011. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

New York – The current world population of 7.2 billion is projected to increase by 1 million over the next 12 years and reach 9.6 billion by 2050, according to a United Nations report launched today, which points out that growth will be mainly in developing countries, with more than half in Africa.

“Although population growth has slowed for the world as a whole, this report reminds us that some developing countries, especially in Africa, are still growing rapidly,” said the Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Wu Hongbo in a press release on the report. Continue reading

West Africa’s Sahel region still in crisis and requires urgent support, says UN official

Mothers and their babies wait at a maternal health care centre in Niamey, Niger, where WFP provides supplementary feeding. Photo: WFP/Rein Skullerud

Mothers and their babies wait at a maternal health care centre in Niamey, Niger, where WFP provides supplementary feeding. Photo: WFP/Rein Skullerud

West Africa, Sahel – A senior United Nations humanitarian official today appealed for urgent support to tackle the ongoing food and nutritional crisis in the Sahel region of West Africa and respond to the needs of 11.4 million people facing food insecurity.

“Crises in this region are becoming more frequent, they’re getting closer and closer together and as a result, people are finding it harder and harder to get back on their feet before the next one comes along,” Robert Piper, UN Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for the Sahel, told a news conference in New York. Continue reading