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UN Updates: July 2, 2015

*Keywords: SG=Secretary-General, DSG=Deputy Secretary-General

Mali: The SG condemned the attack today against a convoy of the MINUSMA, which killed six peacekeepers and injured five others. All the killed and injured peacekeepers are from Burkina Faso. The SG reminded all parties that attacks against UN peacekeepers is a violation of international law. The attack brings the total number of casualties from hostile acts since April 2013 to 42 peacekeepers killed, including ten this year, and 166 peacekeepers wounded. The SG also expressed his sincere condolences to the family of the victims and to the Government of Burkina Faso. MINUSMA also condemned the attack, and Mongi Hamdi, the head of the Mission, called for the perpetrators of the attack to be brought to justice quickly.

Burundi: Today the SC was briefed about the situation in Burundi. The SG stated that he deplores continued reports of violence in Burundi and urges Burundians to express their views peacefully and exhorts relevant Burundian authorities to exercise restraint in their management of security incidents.

South Sudan: The SG condemned the attack yesterday on a UNMISS protection of civilians site in Malakal by opposition forces. He strongly condemned the killing of one IDP and the injury of 6 others as a result of this attack. He called on former Vice President, Riek Machar, and Commander of the opposition forces, Johnson Olony, to conduct an investigation into the incident and hold those responsible accountable. OCHA stated that people in the Upper Nile State will face dangerous levels of food insecurity unless urgent action is taken to address the food crisis.

Syria: A new report released by Save the Children and UNICEF states the conflict and humanitarian crisis in Syria are pushing an increasing number of children into exploitation in the labor market, and much more needs to be done to reverse this trend. The most vulnerable of all working children are those involved in armed conflict, sexual exploitation and illicit activities, including organized begging and child trafficking. In Syria, children are now contributing to the family income in more than three quarters of surveyed households, while in Jordan, close to half of all Syrian refugee children are now the joint or sole family breadwinners in surveyed households. In addition, the report reveals that in some parts of Lebanon, children as young as six years old are reportedly working.

SG Travels: The SG is in Barbados attending the opening of the 36th Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community Conference.

Liberia: The Government of Liberia announced three new confirmed Ebola cases since Sunday. Today Peter Graaff, Head of the UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response, stated that the comeback of the disease in Liberia underscored the need for rigorous testing. Graaff stressed the need to maintain active surveillance and commended the swift revival of the Ebola response mechanism led by the Liberian government.

West Africa: In a report published today by FAO and partners have stated that West Africa has unprecedented opportunities for agricultural growth. The majority of these opportunities will require more effective regional integration, especially as West Africa's population is expected to grow- now 300 million, expected to be 490 million by 2030.

WHS: The UN-backed talks regarding the future of humanitarian action in the Pacific have ended with calls for stronger partnerships with vulnerable and crisis affected communities. Stephen O’Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, stated that Pacific Islanders live with the threat of disaster and climate change and that these communities have a great deal to teach us about effective emergency response. More than 140 delegates met in Auckland, New Zealand, this week for the seventh of eight regional consultations ahead of the first World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul in May 2016.

Mongolia: Mongolia has paid its regular budget dues in full for 2015, making it the 103rd Member State to do so.

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