When Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon chairs a U.N. pledging conference next week for urgently needed aid to Syria, he is expected to warn the donor community that the humanitarian crisis in the politically-troubled Arab nation is threatening to reach biblical proportions.
As the ongoing crises in some of the world's hot spots - including Syria, the Central African Republic, Mali, Libya, Palestine and Darfur, Sudan - continue unabated, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Monday singled out some of the biggest challenges facing the international community in 2014.
When the first trains in almost two and a half decades started running through this war-ravaged town in Sri Lanka in mid-September, Sinngamuththu Jesudasan could not resist the temptation to go and have a look - repeatedly.
Following fighting in the South Sudan state of Jonglei , the United Nations is trying to coordinate a humanitarian effort to help tens of thousands of people who have fled to the bush. The World Food Programme (WFP) has launched an operation to provide food for those who have escaped the conflict.
Since age 18, Zechariah Manyok Biar fought in the revolutionary army that won South Sudan’s independence from Sudan in July 2011. But now the 28-year-old is in exile from the country he helped liberate.