News by region: Middle East


At World Humanitarian Summit, leaders must take ‘bold decisions’ that will effect real change – UN relief officials

5 May – As world leaders prepare to gather for a first-ever World Humanitarian Summit in Turkey later this month, the United Nations humanitarian coordinators for the Middle East and North Africa today called on the international community to assume its responsibility in finding solutions to end the widespread conflict and humanitarian crises in the region.


Humanitarian operations to support Palestinian refugees continue near Syrian capital – UN agency

5 May – Following intense fighting between armed groups inside Yarmouk camp, the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) reported that it has been able to continue its humanitarian operations in Yalda, near Damascus, since Monday.


No corner of Aleppo is being spared, Security Council told, as UN officials urge end to ‘carnage’ in Syria

4 May – The cessation of hostilities in Syria Must be put back on track, the United Nations political chief today told the Security Council, as the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator said “there can be no explanation or excuse” for waging war on civilians, in Aleppo or anywhere else in the crisis-riven country.


Budget woes ‘costly distraction,’ Ban says, urging reliable funding for UN Palestine refugee agency

4 May – A consequence of failing to fund the activities of the United Nations agency tasked with ensuring the wellbeing of Palestinian refugees across the Middle East would be an increased risk of extremism, more poverty, and a region even more riven by conflict, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned today, urging donors to step up their financial support.


UN agencies boost partnership on visualization of food security data for Yemen

4 May – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) are boosting wider understanding of how families in conflict-torn Yemen struggle with persistent food insecurity, through a new interactive visualization of data captured by mobile technology and shared on an open source platform.


Ban welcomes launch of UN inspection to facilitate flow of commercial goods to Yemen

3 May – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed yesterday’s official launch of the operations of a UN inspection mechanism to facilitate the unimpeded flow of commercial goods and services to Yemen, while ensuring compliance with the arms embargo created by the Security Council, his spokesman said today.


UN envoy ‘cautiously hopeful’ for re-launch of truce in Syria

3 May – Following discussions in Moscow on the intra-Syria talks, the United Nations envoy facilitating the process has said that he is cautiously hopeful that the cessation of hostilities pact will be re-launched, “perhaps even later today.”


Greater assistance needed to help tackle Iraq’s humanitarian crisis – UN refugee agency

3 May – The United Nations refugee agency has reported that Iraq will continue to need greater humanitarian assistance as the country’s displacement crisis shows no sign of easing, with more than 3.4 million people displaced and ongoing conflict causing thousands more families to leave their homes in search of safety.


Syria: UN chief calls on warring parties to put cessation of hostilities 'back on track'

2 May – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on the warring Syrian sides to immediately recommit to the cessation of hostilities and uphold their responsibility to protect civilians, his spokesman said today.


Iraq: with hundreds killed in April, UN expresses deep concern at ‘incessant violence’

2 May – A total of 741 Iraqis were killed and another 1,374 were injured in acts of terrorism, violence and armed conflict in Iraq last month, according to casualty figures recorded by the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).