Published: Tuesday 31 December 1996

Officials from over 70 countries are meeting at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) headquarters in Nairobi to discuss the Montevideo Programme II -the second long-term UNEP plan of action concerning environmental law. The meeting from December 2- 6 will aim to further strengthen global environmental laws. The programme has achieved success in various fields. notably in the safe use of chemicals. UNEP has also helped in framing a code of ethics on the enternational trade in chemicals. The proceedings of this meeting will be presented at the 19th session of UNEP's governing council from January 27 to February 7, 1997, in Nairobi.

On the occasion of the World AIDS Day on December 1, the UN agency on AIDS -UNAIDS -had some gloomy news. Cases of HIV are rising among women and children in previously unaffected areas of central and eastern Europe and Asia. Said Peter Piot, executive director, UNAIDS, "The HIV epidemic is far from over, and in fact, continues to strengthen its grip on the world's most vulnerable populations."

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