United Nations

UN Declares Nelson Mandela International Day

The United Nations General Assembly has declared July 18 Nelson Mandela International Day, to mark the South African anti-apartheid leader's contribution to peace.

By adopting the resolution, General Assembly president, Ali Treki, pointed out that the international community is expressing its appreciation for ‘a great man’ who suffered for the sake of people everywhere.

Zimbabwe Deports UN Rights Expert

United Nations human rights expert, Manfred Nowak, has been deported from Zimbabwe on 29 November 2009 after being detained by security officials on arrival overnight.

Nowak says he had been invited to that country by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai whose power-sharing deal with President Robert Mugabe is under severe strain.

Nowak points out that, “I had not anticipated this. This is a serious diplomatic incident."

UN Welcomes Madagascar Power-Sharing Deal

The United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, has welcomed the power-sharing deal that Madagascar's bitter political rivals agreed to and urged them to quickly agree to build a transitional government.

UN deputy spokesperson, Marie Okabe, says that the UN is ready to support the implementation of the agreements signed on Sunday, along with the African Union, southern African nations and other regional and international organisations.

UN Hit by Global Financial Crisis

The United Nations is warning of a US$4.8 billion shortfall in funding to tackle humanitarian crises in the world's poorest countries, as the credit crunch leaves developed world governments with little cash to spare.

John Holmes, of the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, says that while the UN's emergency appeals had received more funds than at the same time last year, the economic crisis is exacerbating poverty and increasing need.

UN Appeals for Funds for Madagascar

The United Nations has appealed for US$35 million to "save lives" in Madagascar, where over three million people need help following political instability and natural disasters.

In a press statement, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), points out that, “To prevent the deterioration of the humanitarian situation, the Madagascar Humanitarian Country Team is seeking US$35.7 million to save lives."

Southern Africa Hardest Hit by Floods

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has reported excessive rainfall is causing havoc for the lives and livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of people in seven Southern African countries. 

The hardest countries are Namibia and Angola, which are experiencing the worst floods since 1963. Twenty-one people have already lost their lives and an estimated 200 000 people have been affected in Angola.

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