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Darfur: Security Council extends African Union-UN mission for 10 more months

India Blooms News Service | | 28 Aug 2014, 09:30 am
New York, Aug 28 (IBNS) The Security Council on Wednesday extended the mandate of the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) until 30 June 2015, while requesting the peacekeeping mission to focus on strategic priorities such as the improved protection of civilians and humanitarian workers, along with the facilitation of aid and mediation activities.

Earlier this year, the Council had endorsed the revised priorities for the mission outlined bySecretary-General Ban Ki-moon in a special report following an inter-agency review of its work, its much-changed operating environment and its efforts to achieve its mandate.

In on Wednesday’s unanimously adopted resolution, the Council requested that UNAMID “continue to align all its activity and direct the use of its resources to the achievement of these priorities…”

Established by the Council in 2007, UNAMID has the protection of civilians as its core mandate, but is also tasked with contributing to security for humanitarian assistance, monitoring and verifying implementation of agreements, and assisting an inclusive political process aimed at ending the conflict that erupted in the Darfur region of Sudan over 10 years ago.

It is also tasked with contributing to the promotion of human rights and the rule of law, and monitoring and reporting on the situation along the borders with Chad and the Central African Republic.

“The resolution prioritizes protection of civilians and humanitarian efforts in UNAMID’s work and requests enhanced human rights reporting from the Mission,” Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant of the United Kingdom, which holds the rotating presidency of the Council for this month, told reporters.

“The resolution,” he added, “requests comprehensive and wide-ranging recommendations on the future mandate, configuration, composition, and exit strategy of UNAMID for next February, and expresses the Council’s clear intention to take prompt action on those recommendations.

“And we want to use this opportunity to make any necessary changes to improve the working of UNAMID.”

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again; UNESCO regrets #HagiaSophia, #Turkey, #Istanbul, #HagiaSophiaMosqueAgain Istanbul/IBNS: Hagia Sophia, Turkey's iconic monument, a UNESCO World Heritage and one of the central attractions of its capital Istanbul, is no longer a museum. It has been turned back as a mosque though some 1500 years ago it was built as an Orthodox Christian cathedral. Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque during the Ottoman time in 1453 while under Ataturk it was turned into a museum in 1935. The decision comes amid a growing rise of the Islamists in Turkey who had been demanding that it be restored as a mosque though Opposition leaders with secular credentials had been against the move. A top court in Turkey ruled that turning it into a museum in 1935 by modern Turkey's secular architect Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was illegal, paving the way for present Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to declare it as a mosque again and to open it for Muslim prayers. Erdogan made the announcement an hour after the court ruled the conversion to museum in 1935 as illegal and scrapped its status. "May it be beneficial," posted Erdogan on Twitter, sharing an official document on the change with his signature. UNESCO regrets In an immediate reaction, UNESCO said it "deeply regrets" the decision. UNESCO said it was "regrettable that the Turkish decision was not the subject of dialog nor notification beforehand". "UNESCO calls on the Turkish authorities to open a dialog without delay in order to avoid a step back from the universal value of this exceptional heritage whose preservation will be reviewed by the World Heritage Committee in its next session," the United Nation's cultural body said in a statement. Istanbul icon of beauty and wonderment According to Turkey's official tourism website, Hagia Sophia is a remarkable achievement in the history of architecture. and a living proof of mankind's revolt against the laws of physics and it calls it a monument whose importance transcends borders. It is one of UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage sites attracting millions of visitors across the world with its majestic grandeur

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again 11 Jul 2020, 01:37 pm