Africa Amnesty Month begins today. Linked to the Silencing the Guns in Africa by 2020 initiative, the disarmament effort is designed to reduce the flows of illicit small arms and light weapons, allowing anyone to hand in illegal weapons throughout the month of September.
The High Commissioner for Human Rights expressed deep concern over death threats against Congolese rights defender and Nobel Prize Laureate Denis Mukwege, calling for a swift investigation and action to bring the perpetrators to justice. The threats followed his condemnation of the killing of civilians in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Fighting in Afghanistan’s Kunduz Province has displaced 52,000 people since 16 August following attacks by a non-State armed group and responsive strikes by national security forces. A surge of United Nations staff is under way to boost humanitarian capacity in Kunduz and a joint assessment team was deployed.
In a note issued on Friday, the Secretary-General’s Personal Envoy for Bolivia, Jean Arnault, welcomed the agreement reached among the Executive Branch, the Plurinational Legislative Assembly and the Plurinational Electoral Organ regarding the 2020 general elections.
Polio immunization campaigns have resumed in Afghanistan and Pakistan, months after COVID-19 left 50 million children without their polio vaccines, UNICEF said today. There is concern that up to 1 million children in Afghanistan could miss out as door-to-door vaccinations are not possible in some areas.
A flight carrying ventilators, protective masks and other essential medical supplies landed in Papua New Guinea today, marking the start of the World Food Programme’s humanitarian air service for the Pacific, which aims to help the region’s countries and territories bolster the Covid-19 pandemic response.
In Sudan’s Khartoum state — where food security has deteriorated due to inflation and economic decline — the World Food Programme (WFP) launched its first programme providing nutritional support to 175,000 pregnant and nursing women and children under five. Precautions are in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
In Zimbabwe, where 60 per cent of the population is projected to be food insecure by the end of 2020, the World Food Programme appealed for $250 million to prevent a human catastrophe. A nationwide COVID-19 lockdown has led to joblessness in urban areas, growing hunger in rural areas and hyperinflation that has made basic goods unaffordable.