News in Brief 08 February 2016 (PM)

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Children in Jawa village, in East Jebel Marra (South Darfur). Photo: UNAMID/Albert González Farran

Rise in people escaping fighting in Jebel Marra region of Sudan

Displacement in Sudan’s Jebel Marra region has reached its highest level in years, according to the UN humanitarian affairs office, OCHA.

Fighting between government forces and rebel groups has led some 38,000 civilians to flee to North Darfur, one of the five states that comprise the Darfur region.

They include 23,000 people, 90 per cent of whom are women and children, who now are seeking shelter in a site belonging to the African Union-United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID).

The UN humanitarian affairs office, OCHA, says aid agencies delivered food, water, medical items and other supplies to the area last week.

Another convoy of 24 trucks is on its way to the main city in North Darfur where supplies will be airlifted and then transported by road. 

Only 1 in 6 drug users getting treatment

Services for people fighting drug addiction are falling short as only one out of six drug users worldwide is receiving treatment.

That information comes from Yuri Fedetov, head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), in an address to global parliamentarians meeting at the UN in New York on Monday.

And although women make up a third of all drug users, only one in five is being treated.

Mr Fedetov said addressing the global drug problem is essential for promoting health, as well as peaceful and inclusive societies, as part of the push to achieve the new sustainable development agenda.

Parliamentarians from various countries are attending the two-day meeting looking at the world drug problem.

Federico Pinedo is president of the Argentine Senate:

“We are preparing ourselves to participate as a country in the Special Assembly of April regarding drugs. And we are trying to show that Argentina is ready to have a balanced approach to the drug issue: fighting against the offer of drugs but also against the demand of drugs and caring about the health of our people.”

UN chief urges respect for holy sites following arson attack on synagogue

The UN Secretary-General is calling for a thorough investigation into an arson attack against a synagogue in the occupied West Bank on Friday.

The makeshift synagogue housed in a tent was named after three Jewish teenagers whose bodies were found in an area located near the site in June 2014.

Ban Ki-moon called on all sides in the Middle East to respect the sanctity of holy sites.

He also encouraged parties to refrain from “any inflammatory actions or statements” and to reject extremist elements that are seeking to transform the current situation into a religious conflict.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 2’56″

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