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

 

Concern on Syrian Violence, UN Relocates Non-Essential Staff

As Concern Rises About Syrian Violence, UN Relocates Non-Essential Staff

New York, Aug 17 2011 - The United Nations is temporarily withdrawing some staff from Syria amid mounting international concern about the violent crackdown by Government forces against civilian demonstrators.

The UN is relocating 26 non-essential international staff and their families from Syria, according to Michael Williams, the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon.

In comments to Reuters news agency earlier today, Mr. Williams said he was "very concerned" about the situation in the northern port city of Latakia, where Syrian military forces have engaged in a heavy and sustained assault since the weekend. Dozens of people have reportedly been killed.

The assault on Latakia is the latest in a series of deadly confrontations between Government forces and protesters since large numbers of Syrians first took to the streets in mid-March to demand greater freedoms.

Those protests are part of a broader uprising across North Africa and the Middle East that has led to the toppling of long-standing regimes in Tunisia and Egypt and conflict in Libya.

As many as 2,000 people have been killed in Syria in the past five months and top UN officials, including Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, have spoken out against the Government's crackdown.

On Sunday, the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) voiced grave concern about the situation in Latakia, where a camp housing Palestinian refugees has come under attack from Government forces.

For more details go to UN News Centre at http://www.un.org/news

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Climate Change: Record Northern Heat, Fuels Concerns Over US Wildfire Destruction

More than 78,000 acres of forest in the Sierra mountains in California has been lost due to wildfires. Photo: San Francisco Fire Department The northern hemisphere experienced its warmest August ever, the World Meteorological Organization ( WMO ... More>>

UN: Guterres Condemns Killing Of Journalists, Following Beheading Of Mexican Crime Reporter

© UNESCO | International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists. Following the gruesome death of a Mexican journalist specializing in crime reporting, who was found beheaded on Wednesday, UN chief António Guterres has issued a statement condemning ... More>>

UN: WHO Warns Against Potential Ebola Spread In DR Congo And Beyond

Ebola is spreading in a western province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), raising fears that the disease could reach neighbouring Republic of Congo and even the capital, Kinshasa, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday. ... More>>

WWF: Living Planet Report Reveals Average Two-Thirds Decline In Wildlife Populations Since 1970

According to WWF’s Living Planet Report 2020 released today, global populations* of mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and fish have suffered an average two-thirds decline in less than half a century. The decline is due in large part to the very ... More>>