SEOUL/GENEVA, June 17 (Reuters) – The World Health
Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday South Korea’s outbreak of
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a “wake-up call” but
does not constitute a global emergency, as the country reported
eight new cases.
A total of 162 people have been infected and 20 people have
died in South Korea’s MERS outbreak, which began last month and
is the largest outside Saudi Arabia.
GENEVA/LONDON (Reuters) – An outbreak of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome in South Korea shows how easily diseases can spread in a connected world, but is not serious enough to warrant travel bans or other global measures, the World Health Organization said on Wednesday.
Members of the U.N. body’s emergency committee agreed unanimously that the outbreak, while worrying, did not qualify as a public health emergency of international concern – a rating that would have triggered a coordinated, worldwide response.
GENEVA (Reuters) – Yemen’s warring parties have agreed at U.N.-sponsored peace talks on the need for a ceasefire but the details remain under discussion, a delegate to the discussions said on Tuesday.
The U.N. special envoy to Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, began shuttle diplomacy in Geneva trying to bridge differences between various political factions. But they still refused to sit at the same table and spelled out clashing agendas.
GENEVA (Reuters) – Warring Yemeni powers signaled mutual hostility at the start of talks on Tuesday aimed at ending a war that has caused a humanitarian disaster, drawn in regional rivals and threatened the Arabian peninsula country with permanent division.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon opened the Geneva discussions on Monday calling for a humanitarian ceasefire with the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
GENEVA (Reuters) – U.N. Chief Ban Ki-moon launched Yemen peace talks in Geneva on Monday with a call for a humanitarian truce as warplanes from a Saudi-led Arab coalition pounded the Houthi-controlled capital Sanaa overnight.
More than 2,600 people have been killed since the coalition began military operations in March to stop the Iranian-backed Houthi militia moving on Aden and to shore up embattled President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, then in the southern city.
GENEVA (Reuters) – A United Nations special envoy will hold separate “proximity” talks with Yemen’s two main warring parties in Geneva on Sunday, in the hope of bringing them to the same table eventually, a U.N. spokesman said on Friday.
Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed has convened the talks, expected to last two or three days, to try to end more than two months of war between Iranian-backed Houthis and forces loyal to President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who has fled to Saudi Arabia.
GENEVA (Reuters) – Hundreds of thousands of people risk starvation in South Sudan where a resurgence in fighting and deepening food shortages have left some with nothing to eat except water lilies, the International Committee of the Red Cross said on Wednesday.
Violence had intensified in the world’s youngest country in the past few weeks and troubled peace talks are unlikely to restart soon, the aid agency added, appealing for donations.
GENEVA (Reuters) – The United Nations’ top human rights official called on Nigeria’s new President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday to investigate reports of horrifying crimes by Boko Haram Islamist rebels and alleged abuses by the military.
Zeid Ra’ad Al-Hussein said he had seen allegations of mass executions, rape and amputations of children by Boko Haram – a day after two blasts killed more than 30 people in the group’s northeast heartland.
ZURICH/GENEVA (Reuters) – HSBC agreed on Thursday
to pay Geneva authorities 40 million Swiss francs ($43 million)
to settle a money laundering investigation at its Swiss private
bank, one of a number of probes facing its Geneva-based wealth
Leaked files published earlier this year sparked allegations
that HSBC’s private bank may have enabled clients to conceal
millions of dollars of assets and dragged Europe’s largest
lender into the sights of regulators including Geneva’s public
BERN (Reuters) – Swiss lawmakers gave preliminary approval on Wednesday to a law to make it easier to investigate corruption allegations at sporting bodies located in Switzerland, a vote that coincided with the worst scandal to ever hit soccer’s ruling body FIFA.
The law would end a system under which FIFA, and roughly 60 other sporting bodies based there, are immune from investigation by Swiss authorities when instances of corruption are deemed an internal matter with no impact the wider public interest.