World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Annan Urges Immediate Release Of Hostages In Iraq

Annan Urges 'Immediate And Unconditional' Release Of All Hostages In Iraq

Amid mounting reports of hostage-taking in Iraq, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today reiterated his call for the "immediate and unconditional" release of all those who have been abducted.

"The Secretary-General is extremely concerned about the fate of all civilians held hostage," his spokesman, Fred Eckhard, told journalists in New York.

"The abductions of two French journalists and two Italian humanitarian aid workers and their Iraqi colleagues are but the latest incidents in a tragic pattern of violations committed against innocent civilians in Iraq," he added in a statement.

The statement appealed "for respect, at all times, for the fundamental principals of human rights and dignity."

Meanwhile, the Security Council was briefed today on the work of the UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission for Iraq (UNMOVIC), which has in recent months continued to investigate the discovery of Iraqi weapons-related items in Jordan, Turkey and the Netherlands.

UNMOVIC has reported that parts of the Al Samoud 2 missile - proscribed under international sanctions and previously tagged by UN inspectors - had turned up in scrapyards outside of Iraq, raising questions about the ability of the international community to track the country's clandestine weapons schemes.

In another development, Mr. Eckhard said the senior UN envoy to Iraq, Ashraf Qazi, will brief the Security Council on 14 September.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news