UN

View of a cargo ship in the Panama Bay in Panama City on July 18, 2013. Panama on Wednesday officially requested UN inspectors scrutinize the cargo on the North Korean ship seized near Panama on Tuesday, which UN diplomats said could constitute a breach of the strict arms sanctions imposed on North Korea over its nuclear programme. North Korea said Wednesday that Cuban arms seized from the Pyongyang-flagged ship near the Panama Canal were part of a legitimate deal.

Rodrigo Arangua/AFP

A cargo ship passes through the Panama Bay in Panama City on Thursday. Panama on Wednesday requested for UN inspectors to scrutinise the cargo on the North Korean ship seized near Panama on Tuesday, which UN diplomats said could constitute a breach of the strict arms sanctions imposed on North Korea over its nuclear programme. Read more

Returning Afghan refugees, who have recently arrived from Pakistan, wait during the registration process at a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) center on the outskirts of Kabul, Afghanistan, on Thursday, June 20, 2013, as they prepare to return to their province after fleeing civil war and Taliban rule. World Refugee Day, a day initiated by the United Nations to raise awareness on the plight of refugees worldwide, is observed on June 20 every year.

Rahmat Gul/AP

After recently returning from Pakistan, Afghan refugees wait during the registration process at a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees center near Kabul, Afghanistan, as they prepare to go back to their province after fleeing civil war and Taliban rule. World Refugee Day, initiated by the United Nations to raise awareness on the plight of refugees worldwide, is observed on June 20 every year.

Syrian rebel fighters belonging to the "Martyrs of Maaret al-Numan" battalion leave their position after a range of shootings on June 13, 2013 in the southern Syrian town of Maaret al-Numan in front of the army base of Wadi Deif, down in the valley. At least 93,000 people, including over 6,500 children, have been killed in Syria's civil war, the United Nations said on June 13, 2013, warning that the true death toll could be far higher.

Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP

Syrian rebel fighters belonging to the ‘Martyrs of Maaret al-Numan’ battalion leave their position after a range of shootings on Thursday in the southern Syrian town of Maaret al-Numan in front of the army base of Wadi Deif. At least 93,000 people, including over 6,500 children, have been killed in Syria’s civil war, the UN said, warning that the true death toll could be far higher.

People visit the Luminarium, an inflatable sculpture of British artist Parkinson, before its opening on the ground of the United Nations European headquarters in Geneva...People visit the Luminarium, an inflatable sculpture of British artist Alan Parkinson, before its opening on the ground of the United Nations European headquarters in Geneva June 10, 2013. Until June 14, 2013, diplomats, U.N. officials, school children and communities will be offered inside the 1000 square metre (10764 square feet) structure, financed by the United Kingdom Mission to the U.N., to think more creatively about how to make the work of the Human Rights Councils better understood through discussions and art performances.

Denis Balibouse /Reuters

People visit the Luminarium, an inflatable sculpture of British artist Alan Parkinson, before its opening at the grounds of the UN European headquarters in Geneva. Until June 14, diplomats, UN officials, school children and communities will be able to go inside the 1,000 square metre structure, financed by the United Kingdom Mission to the UN, to think more creatively about how to make the work of the Human Rights Council better understood through discussions and art performances.

An Afghan girl stands in the doorway of her house in the old sector of Herat on June 5, 2013.  Over a third of Afghans are living in abject poverty, as those in power are more concerned about addressing their vested interests rather than the basic needs of the population, a UN report said.  AFP PHOTO/Aref KARIMIAref Karimi/AFP/Getty Images

Aref Karimi/AFP

An Afghan girl stands in the doorway of her house in the old sector of Herat on Wednesday. Over a third of Afghans are living in abject poverty, as those in power are more concerned about addressing their vested interests rather than the basic needs of the population, a UN report said. Read more

Rohingya women sit in front of their rel...Rohingya women sit in front of their relief tent at the Mansi Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp on the outskirts of Sittwe on May 15, 2013. A cyclone threatening to lash low-lying coastal areas of Bangladesh and Myanmar appears to have weakened, but still poses a risk to more than eight million people, according to the UN.  AFP PHOTO / SOE THAN WINSoe Than WIN/AFP/Getty Images

Soe Than Win/AFP

Rohingya women sit in front of their relief tent at the Mansi Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp on the outskirts of Sittwe on Wednesday. A cyclone threatening to lash low-lying coastal areas of Bangladesh and Myanmar appears to have weakened, but still poses a risk to more than 8 million people, according to the UN. Read more

Afghan confectioners work at a traditional sweets factory in Herat on May 14, 2013. Some nine million Afghans or 36 percent of the population are living in "absolute poverty" while another 37 percent live barely above the poverty line, according to a UN report.

Aref Karimi/AFP

Afghan confectioners work at a traditional sweets factory in Herat. Some 9 million Afghans or 36 per cent of the population are living in “absolute poverty”, while another 37 per cent live barely above the poverty line, according to a UN report.

Afghan farmers collect raw opium as they work in a poppy field in Khogyani district of Jalalabad, east of Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, May 10, 2013. Opium poppy cultivation has been increasing for a third year in a row and is heading for a record high, the U.N. said in a report. Poppy cultivation is also dramatically increasing in areas of the southern Taliban heartland, the report showed, especially in regions where thousands of U.S.-led coalition troops have been withdrawn or are in the process of departing. The report indicates that whatever international efforts have been made to wean local farmers off the crop have failed.

Rahmat Gul/AP

Afghan farmers collect raw opium as they work in a poppy field in Khogyani district of Jalalabad, east of Kabul in Afghanistan. Opium poppy cultivation has been increasing for a third year in a row and is heading for a record high, the UN said in a report. Poppy cultivation is also increasing in areas of the southern Taliban heartland, the report showed, especially in regions where thousands of US-led coalition troops have been withdrawn or are in the process of departing. The report indicates that whatever international efforts have been made to wean local farmers off the crop have failed.

United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) goodwill ambassador and Chinese actress Li Bingbing (2nd R) dances with members of the Samburu tribe in the Samburu game reserve on May 8, 2013. Li Bingbing was on an official visit to the Samburu reserve in Kenya to highlight issues of Africa's poaching crisis.

Carl de Souza/AFP

United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) goodwill ambassador and Chinese actress Li Bingbing (2nd R) dances with members of the Samburu tribe in the Samburu game reserve on Wednesday. Li Bingbing was on an official visit to the Samburu reserve in Kenya to highlight issues of Africa’s poaching crisis. Read more

Window cleaners are silhouetted as they clean windows on the United Nations European headquarters building in Geneva

Denis Balibouse/Reuters

Window cleaners clean windows on the United Nations European headquarters building in Geneva.