News by region: Middle East


In ISIL-controlled territory, 8 million civilians living in ‘state of fear’ – UN expert

31 July – The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has engaged in widespread and systematic human rights violations of the most serious kinds in Syria and Iraq, brutally forcing some 8 million people to “assimilate, flee or face death,” according to a United Nations expert.


Senior UN officials condemn West Bank arson attack that killed Palestinian child

31 July – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the UN special envoy on the Middle East have strongly condemned today's arson attack in the West Bank that killed a Palestinian child and left the child's parents severely injured.


UNESCO voices alarm at reported killing of Iraqi journalists by extremists

30 July – The Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) voiced deep concern today over the reported killing of two Iraqi journalists in Mosul.


INTERVIEW: "Every conflict has an end, and this conflict... has to come to an end after five years" - UN envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura

30 July – The Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has been tasked with reinvigorating an inclusive political process towards ending the crisis in the country, based on the aims set out in the 2012 Geneva Communiqué, which was adopted by the first international conference on the issue and has been endorsed by the UN security Council.


Bahrain: UN chief condemns bomb attack in southern village

29 July – United Nations Secretary-General has condemned the bomb attack yesterday in the village of Sitra, Bahrain, which reportedly killed two policemen and injured several others.


Ban condemns Israel’s approval of new settlement construction in West Bank

29 July – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned the announcement today that Israel has approved construction of some 300 housing units in the West Bank settlement of Beit El, as well as the planning and construction of nearly 500 housing units in a number of settlements in East Jerusalem.


Security Council approves one year renewal of UN Assistance Mission in Iraq

29 July – The Security Council today extended for another year the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) and expressed its intention to review the operation’s mandate in 12 months or sooner, if requested by the Iraqi Government.


At Security Council, Ban and UN special envoy outline ‘way forward’ on political solution for war-torn Syria

29 July – Describing the more than four years of “slaughter” in Syria as a “shameful symbol of the international community’s divisions and failure,” United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today appealed to the Security Council to endorse his Special Envoy’s recommendations on reaching the political solution that “all parties claim to support.”


Syria’s grim statistics ‘speak for themselves,’ reflect need for political settlement, Security Council told

28 July – A political solution is more urgent than ever to end the “futile, hopeless” cycle of brutality and violence in Syria, the top United Nations humanitarian official said today, urging the Security Council to consider its options through “the eyes of the beleaguered, now long-suffering” civilians.


Violent attacks reported against civilians fleeing ISIL-controlled areas of Iraq – UN human rights office

28 July – An increasing number of people in Iraq, including families with children and the elderly, have encountered deadly ambushes as they try to escape areas controlled the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levan (ISIL) by risking their lives on a treacherous mountain journey to safety, the United Nations human rights office reported today.