Top news of the day | Friday: Ukraine, Gaza, meningitis, astronautics

Главные новости дня | пятница: Украина, Газа, менингит, космонавтика

Yuri Gagarin and Valentina Tereshkova at UN headquarters in 1963. Top news of the day | Friday: Ukraine, Gaza, meningitis, astronautics UN

The main news of the day in the UN and in the world: Security Council meeting on Ukraine, lack of access for humanitarian aid to northern Gaza, new vaccine against meningitis, International Day of Human Space Flight.

Security Council on arms supplies

Since the last briefing at the UN Security Council on the topic of arms supplies to the Russian-Ukrainian conflict zone three weeks ago, the provision of military assistance to the Ukrainian armed forces has continued in the context of a full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine. Representative of the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs Ivor Fung stated this at a Security Council meeting on Friday. The meeting was convened at the initiative of Russia to discuss arms supplies to Ukraine. The influx of arms and ammunition into any armed conflict can contribute to escalation and pose a significant risk of leakage, Fung noted.

Humanitarian assistance in Gaza

Despite hopes from recent Israeli commitments to increase aid, the situation for Gazans remains dire. This was stated by the UN Coordinator for the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) Jamie McGoldrick. He stressed that long delays at checkpoints and the security situation inside the enclave continue to hamper the delivery of aid to where it is needed most. About 60 hours were wasted this month, he said, and delays sometimes meant it was “too late” to continue traveling.

New vaccine

Nigeria has become the first country in the world to introduce a groundbreaking vaccine that has been recommended by WHO to protect against five strains of meningococcal bacteria. All five strains cause meningitis and blood poisoning. The new shot offers broader protection than the vaccine used in much of Africa, which is only effective against one strain. The Global Alliance for Vaccination and Immunization is supporting the introduction of the new vaccine, as well as funding a supply of meningitis vaccinations around the world and supporting low-income countries with routine immunization against the disease.

Human space flight

International Human Space Flight Day is celebrated on April 12 every year to commemorate the beginning of the space age for mankind. On this day in 1961, the first human flight into space took place, which was made by Yuri Gagarin. Today, the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs is responsible for promoting international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space. Humanity must move away from the Cold War-era “space race,” with commercial competition to harness the potential of space only heating up, according to Office chief Aarti Hall-Maini.


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