The inaugural United Nations World Data Forum kicked off in the South African city of Cape Town, bringing together more than 1,500 data experts from more than 100 countries, with the aim of building broad consensus on how to harness the power of data for sustainable development.
Organized by the UN in cooperation with the South African government, the three-day gathering also aims to rally support behind a new global action plan. “Talking about data, statistics – these are very important subjects for the Member States, right from
A major international conference to try to kick-start peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians is being held in the French capital, Paris. Delegates from 70 nations are expected to reaffirm support for a two-state solution to the decades-old conflict. Palestinians have welcomed the meeting but Israel - which is not attending - says the conference is loaded against it. The last round of direct peace talks collapsed amid acrimony in April 2014. Israel and the Palestinians have been invited to hear the conclusions of the meeting, but not to
Zhou Youguang, a linguist considered the father of modern China’s Pinyin Romanization system, died Saturday at the age of 111.Born in 1906 during China’s last imperial dynasty, the Qing, Zhou died at his home in Beijing, one day after celebrating his birthday, according to state broadcaster Chinese Central Television and other official media outlets. After receiving a Western-style education at Shanghai’s St. John’s University, Zhou moved to the
The Government of the Central African Republic and the United Nations humanitarian country team today launched the nearly $400 million response plan for the 2017-2019 period to meet the basic needs of 2.2 million Central Africans. According to a press release from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the response plan, with a budget of $399.5 million, covers three strategic objectives: save more lives; strengthen the protection of affected populations; and preserve human dignity by
A new partnership between the United Nations rural poverty agency and officials in Mauritania could boost finances and nutrition for nearly 300,000 farmers in the southern part of the country.
“It will reduce the country's dependence on food imports, create jobs and increase the incomes of rural households, especially women and youth,” said Philippe Rémy, the Country Programme Manager for Mauritania at the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), in a news
A missionary surgeon to one of the world’s poorest countries has won the first-ever $500,000 Gerson L’Chaim prize for outstanding Christian medical service. Jason Fader, whose parents were also medical missionaries, is 1 of 13 surgeons serving the 10 million people in the sub-Saharan African country. Three-quarters of the population is malnourished, making Burundi the world’s hungriest country in 2016. Fader, who grew up in Kenya, has been in Burundi since 2013. In addition to caring for about 25,000
The deadly spread of cancer around the body has been cut by three-quarters in animal experiments, say scientists. Tumours can "seed" themselves elsewhere in the body and this process is behind 90% of cancer deaths. The mouse study, published in Nature, showed altering the immune system slowed the spread of skin cancers to the lungs. Cancer Research UK said the early work gave new insight into how tumours spread and may lead to new treatments. The spread of cancer - known as metastasis - is a fight between a rapidly mutating cancer and the
The effect of constant stress on a deep-lying region of the brain explains the increased risk of heart attack, a study in The Lancet suggests. In a study of 300 people, those with higher activity in the amygdala were more likely to develop cardiovascular disease - and sooner than others. Stress could be as important a risk factor as smoking and high blood pressure, the US researchers said. Heart experts said at-risk patients should be helped to manage stress. Emotional stress has long been linked with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD),
Food Price Index remained stable in December amid sharp fall in sugar prices. Prices of major food commodities declined for the fifth year in a row in 2016, averaging 161.6 points for the year as a whole, some 1.5 percent below their 2015 levels. Bumper harvests and prospects for staple cereals offset upward pressure on FAO's Food Price Index from tropical commodities such as sugar and palm oil, where production was impacted by El Nino.
Malawi, which was hit by a crippling drought last year, has become the third southern African nation to report an outbreak of armyworms, a voracious pest that devours maize and other crops.
"We have a reported invasion this week but we are confident in dealing with this because we have pesticides," Malawi's Minister of Agriculture George Chaponda told Reuters late Wednesday
Thousands of refugees in Turkey are receiving monthly cash assistance to help cover essential needs such as food, rent, medicine and warm clothing for winter through the Emergency Social Safety Net (ESSN), a major innovative relief programme funded by the European Union.
The first group of vulnerable families received debit cards with their first cash transfers in December 2016. The cards are loaded every month with 100 Turkish Lira (roughly €28) per family member.
At least one girl has been killed and four others injured in attacks near a school outside the Yemeni capital, Sana'a, leading the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to renew its call on the people involved in the country's conflict to protect children and stop attacks on civilian structures.
“Schools should be zones of peace at all times, a sanctuary where children can learn, grow, play and be safe,” Meritxell Relaño, UNICEF Representative in Yemen, said in a statement. “Children
Sounding the alarm over the situation of thousands of migrants, asylum seekers and others enduring extreme cold conditions across Europe and Eastern Mediterranean, the United Nations migration agency has appealed for immediate action to save them from freezing to death.
According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), at least six individuals – three migrants in Bulgaria, one in Greece and two refugees in Lebanon – have succumbed to the harsh winter that has struck the region with some of the heaviest snowfall and the most severe icy temperatures in years. Deaths due to exposure have also been reported in the Italian capital Rome
Most aid groups operating in Nigeria's north-east are wasting funds meant to help victims of the Islamist Boko Haram insurgency, a state governor has said. Only eight of 126 registered agencies in Borno state were there to genuinely help, KashimShettima said. He criticised the UN children's agency (Unicef) for buying bullet-proof cars, saying he did not use such vehicles. Last month, the UN launched a $1bn (£825,000) appeal for those facing hunger and starvation in the
Today marks the launch of a new United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) campaign, EarlyMomentsMatter, aimed at raising awareness about the critical impact that early experiences have on children’s brain development during their first 1,000 days of life. Before the age of three, human brain cells make up to 1,000 new connections every second, a speed that slows later in life. These connections ensure that children’s brains continue to grow and