Equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines is critical to global recovery efforts, and countries must stop pursuing deals with vaccine manufacturers that will limit supply in other regions, should waive intellectual property rules and should encourage pharmaceutical companies to share vaccine knowledge to help speed up production, says World Health Organization Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. UNICEF has announced it will supply low-income countries with syringes and safety boxes to help them prepare for vaccination drives.
A temporary agreement between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency facilitates limited inspection of the country's nuclear activities, but full access is needed to fully monitor Iran's nuclear capabilities, says IAEA head Rafael Grossi. Authorities in Iran have rejected a proposal to meet with the US, the UK, France and Germany on reviving the 2015 deal that limited Iran's nuclear development, saying the US must lift sanctions against the country before discussions begin again.
The United Nations is holding an online appeal today for $3.85 billion in donations to avert a massive, man-made famine in Yemen, where residents are facing the effects of war and the pandemic amid declining financial support. UN-led aid operations only received half of the support needed last year, and the global community must step up and support Yemen to head off a hunger crisis and create conditions that will allow for peace in the region, says UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Mark Lowcock.
The World Health Organization is working together with health authorities in Guinea and the Democratic Republic of Congo to combat Ebola outbreaks in the two countries, but experts say greater vaccination coverage is needed to reduce outbreaks and slow the spread of the disease. WHO epidemiologist Vedaste Ndahindwa says authorities in neighboring countries should also work proactively to reduce the risk of cross-border outbreaks.
Updated climate action plans submitted to the United Nations thus far will only reduce carbon emissions by approximately 1% by 2030, instead of the 45% reduction the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says is needed to limit global warming, a UN report says. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls the report a "red alert" for the planet.
Myanmar ambassador to the United Nations Kyaw Moe Tun has vowed to fight against the military forces that fired him last week and is calling on the global community to reject the military coup in Myanmar and step in to protect protesters amid violent crackdowns. The UN says at least 18 people were killed on Sunday as security forces responded to continued protests with violence.
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