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World news in brief: Diabetes on the rise, UN prisoners in Yemen and war in Ukraine fuel rising landmine casualties

Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot use the insulin it produces effectively.

The WHO has said that more than 460 million people worldwide are living with diabetes and millions more are at risk.

The United Nations health agency stressed that people with the disease need ongoing care and support to manage it and avoid complications, which can include blindness, kidney failure, heart attack, stroke and lower limb amputation.

Although type 1 diabetes is not preventable, maintaining a healthy diet, physical activity and avoiding smoking can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes.

The WHO has warned that the global prevalence of the disease has almost doubled since 1980, from 4.7 percent to 8.5 percent in the adult population.

The United Nations health agency said this reflects an increase in associated risk factors such as being overweight or obesity. Over the past decade, the prevalence of diabetes has increased more rapidly in low- and middle-income countries than in high-income countries.

Yemen: UN agencies demand immediate release of their staff

UN agencies on Tuesday launched a new call for the immediate release of two staff members detained in Yemen more than two years ago by Houthi authorities in the capital Sanaa.

UNESCO and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) issued a joint statement, stressing that “we have not received any information on the reasons for their detention or their status”, although the leaders of the Houthi movement “have repeatedly assured that their release would be imminent.”

The agencies said that in August and October this year, another UNESCO staff member as well as a UN Volunteer from OHCHR were also arrested in the Houthi-held capital, again, without that no information be disclosed about their fate.

“Total disregard” for international law

“This is a deeply alarming situation as it reveals a complete disregard for the rule of law,” the agencies said.

Since a large-scale civil conflict erupted in Yemen in 2014 between the internationally recognized government backed by a Saudi-led coalition and Houthi insurgents, thousands have died and more than 21 million people are dependent on ugly. More than 450,000 children suffer from acute malnutrition.

The agencies said the “unacceptable detentions” constitute violations of the privileges and immunities afforded to UN personnel under international law.

UNESCO Director Audrey Azoulay, High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk and Executive Coordinator of the UN Volunteers Program Toily Kurbanov reiterated their demand to release the staff members “ and all other persons illegally detained by the de facto authority.” .”

Rise in landmine casualties fueled by war in Ukraine

The new use of anti-personnel landmines has led to an increase in the number of casualties from these weapons last year, according to a UN-backed civil society report released Tuesday.

Landmine Monitor 2023 shows that 4,710 people were injured or killed by landmines and explosive remnants of war in 49 countries and two other regions in 2022.

According to the report, civilians accounted for more than four out of five victims landmines and explosive remnants of war, half of whom are children.

The highest number of casualties, 834, was recorded in Syria, followed by Ukraine where 608 people were killed or injured, according to the report.

Amid the conflict in Ukraine, the country has seen a tenfold increase in civilian casualties from deadly weapons compared to 2021.

Yemen and Myanmar both recorded more than 500 casualties last year.

The civil society group behind the report, the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, said “the only way for communities to be truly safe from the scourge of these weapons” is when all States will join the international instrument aimed at combating this threat, the adopted Mine Ban Treaty. in 1997, and I fully respect him.

This publication comes just days before the planned meeting at the UN in Geneva of the 164 states parties to the treaty.

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