News in Brief 02 April 2015 (AM)

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The top United Nations envoy for Afghanistan has condemned “in the strongest terms” today’s deadly suicide attack in the city of Khost, in the country’s far east, which reportedly left dozens of people dead and injured.

Suicide attack in Afghanistan condemned by UN

A suicide attack in Khost Matun city in Afghanistan’s Khost province on Thursday has been strongly condemned by the UN Assistance Mission in the country (UNAMA).

A suicide bomber reportedly detonated his explosive devices amongst a group of civilians participating in a peaceful demonstration, killing 16 people and injuring at least 40, including four children.

UNAMA says the attack took place in the vicinity of the Khost Provincial Governor’s residence, where a large group of civilians had gathered to protest against corruption.

Pacific cyclones highlight existential threat of climate change

Concerns are being raised by the head of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction about the future development of Small Island Developing States in the face of extreme weather events.

Margareta Wahlström on Thursday said it is “remarkable” that in the past two weeks both Vanuatu and Micronesia have been forced to declare a state of emergency.

The countries experienced separate Category 5 cyclones which have caused several deaths, population displacement and widespread destruction.

Millions of people could soon be affected across the Philippines by Typhoon Maysak depending on its strength when it makes expected landfall.

Indonesia gets lowest possible evaluation from Human Right Committee

Indonesia has received the lowest possible evaluation from the UN Human Rights Committee for its failure to respond to a call in 2013 to stop executing prisoners for drug-related crimes.

After a review of Indonesia’s human rights record, the Committee had urged the State to reinstate the de facto moratorium on the death penalty.

It has also called on the Indonesian authorities to ensure that if capital punishment was maintained, it was only for the most serious crimes, which do not include drug-related offences.

Indonesia has argued that given the severe challenges posed by drug-related crimes, it considers such offences as among the most serious to which the death penalty may apply.

Cathrine Hasselberg United Nations.

Duration: 2’03″

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