Palestinians take cover as warning Israeli air strikes are fired at a nearby building in Gaza City yesterday. Photograph: Reuters/Finbarr O’Reilly

American and major European airlines last night cancelled all flights to and from Israel for at least 24 hours after shrapnel from a rocket fired fro(...)

South Africans protest in support of more than Nigerian 200 girls abducted from their school, outside the South African parliament in Cape Town, South Africa today.  Photograph: Nic Bothma/EPA

The UN Security Council has expressed outrage at the abduction of hundreds of Nigerian school girls in two attacks by Islamist militants, demanding th(...)

Central African Republic’s foreign minister Toussaint Kongo Doudou arrives to the podium to speak with the media after voting on a resolution approving UN peacekeepers for the Central African Republic, at UN headquarters in New York. Photograph: Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

The United Nations Security Council has authorised the creation of a nearly 12,000-strong UN peacekeeping force in the Central African Republic(...)

US secretary of state John Kerry speaks with Saudi Arabian foreign minister Prince Saud al-Faisal as UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon looks on, as long-delayed peace talks on the Syrian civil war opened in Montreux, Switzerland, today. Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/New York Times

Syria’s government and opposition, meeting for the first time, vented their mutual hostility today but a UN mediator said the enemies may be ready to (...)

United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNAMIS) personnel guard South Sudanese people displaced by recent fighting in Jabel, on the outskirts of capital Juba. Photograph: James Akena/Reuters.

A mass grave containing some 75 bodies has been found in South Sudan’s Unity State and two other mass graves have been reported in Juba after ethnic (...)

People run at a site hit yesterday by what activists said was an air raid by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the Duma neighbourhood of Damascus. Photograph: Mohamed Abdullah/Reuters

Chemical weapons were likely used in five out of seven attacks investigated by UN experts in Syria, where a two-year civil war has killed more than 10(...)

Representatives from the US, United Nations and the League of Arab States for Syria meet on the situatioin in Syria in Geneva, Switzerland today. Photograph: United Nations handout

An international peace conference aimed at ending Syria’s civil war will be held on January 22nd, the first face-to-face talks between the government (...)

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

The United Nations secretary general Ban Ki-moon has evoked Ireland’s longstanding history of emigration and recent past as a destination for migrants(...)

Secretary general of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon arrives in Russia ahead of the G20 summit. Photograph:  Alexey Kudenko/RIA Novosti via Getty Images

United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon will attend the Group of 20 summit in Russia to keep alive an initiative for a peace conference on Syria.(...)

China’s foreign minister Wang Yi: “A political resolution is still the only way out.” Photograph: Reuters/Adrian Bradshaw

China’s foreign minister Wang Yi said yesterday that the United Nations Security Council should not be pushed into any military action on Syria before(...)