Daily Archives: April 20, 2015

Was This The Deadliest Migrant Ship Disaster Ever?

An untold hundreds of people are feared dead in the latest disaster at sea. “The fatal shipwreck may prove to be the Mediterranean’s deadliest migrant disaster ever and is only the latest tragedy in Europe’s migration crisis. Warmer spring weather has unleashed a torrent of smuggler boats, mostly from Libya, bearing migrants and refugees from the Middle East and Africa, often fleeing war and poverty for a foothold in Europe. Death at sea has become a grimly common occurrence: Even before this weekend’s sinking, humanitarian groups estimated that 900 migrants had already died this year, compared with 90 during the same period a year ago. That figure could rise sharply, as officials estimate that 700 people may have drowned in the weekend disaster.” (NYT http://nyti.ms/1O6re3A)

ISIS Stages Mass Execution of Ethiopian Christians in Libya…“ISIS released a video on Sunday that appears to show fighters from its branches in southern and eastern Libya executing dozens of Ethiopian Christians. “In the video released Sunday, Islamic State militants in Libya shot and beheaded groups of captive Ethiopian Christians. The attack widens the circle of nations affected by the group’s atrocities while showing its growth beyond a self-declared caliphate in Syria and Iraq. The release of the 29-minute video comes a day after Afghanistan’s president blamed the extremists for a suicide attack in his country that killed at least 35 people — and underscores the chaos gripping Libya after its 2011 civil war and the killing of dictator Muammar Qaddafi. It also mirrored a film released in February showing militants beheading 21 captured Egyptian Christians on a Libyan beach, which immediately drew Egyptian airstrikes on the group’s suspected positions in Libya. Whether Ethiopia would — or could — respond with similar military force remains unclear.” (FoxNews http://fxn.ws/1O6saVC)

Stat of the Day: 126 million…That’s how much USAID pledged over the weekend to help rebuild the broken health systems of the three countries most affected by the ebola outbreak. (My Central Oregon http://bit.ly/1O6rUWF)


International mediators in the conflict in northern Mali increased pressure on Tuareg-led separatists on Sunday to sign up to a U.N.-brokered peace deal by announcing a signing ceremony for May 15. (Reuters http://reut.rs/1O6rsrw)

The latest news and useful analysis of the xenophobic attacks in South Africa. (Reuters http://reut.rs/1O6riQV)

A proposed $10 billion tech hub on the outskirts of Ghana’s capital city is threatening to become a cautionary tale about over ambitious development in Africa. (Al Jazeera http://alj.am/1bh9ql6)

Nigerian agricultural minister Akinwumi Adesina is a leading contender for president of the African Development Bank. (VOA http://bit.ly/1DAgDpy)

Sudan’s opposition youth activists struggle to remain optimistic as the government cracks down on demonstrations and alternative candidates withdraw. (VOA http://bit.ly/1G9sVc8)


A court in Egypt moved closer towards imposing the death sentence on 11 fans accused of murder in the 2012 Port Said Stadium disaster after asking the country’s Grand Mufti for permission to execute the men. (Goal.com http://bit.ly/1O6rAXR)

For Eritrean and Sudanese asylum-seekers facing deportation from Israel’s Holot detention centre, the future is bleak. (IRIN http://bit.ly/1G3UvHO)

As the Saudi-led air campaign in Yemen entered a fourth week, civilians shared anguished, close-up views of life during wartime on social networks. (NYT http://nyti.ms/1IqBEUP)

Iran’s foreign minister on Friday submitted a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon outlining a four-point peace plan for Yemen, where Iranian-backed Houthi rebels have been targeted for three weeks by Saudi-led air strikes. (Reuters http://reut.rs/1O6s1S0 )


A suicide bomber on a motorbike blew himself up in front of the Kabul Bank in Jalalabad early Saturday, an attack Afghan president Ghani has blamed on ISIS. (CNN http://cnn.it/1HIounP)

UNICEF is voicing concern about the decision by Australia to transfer asylum seekers detained on the Pacific island of Nauru to Cambodia. (VOA http://bit.ly/1O5QDdL)

A man set himself on fire in a heavily Tibetan region of southwest China, the second Tibetan to do so in a protest in the last two weeks. (NYT http://nyti.ms/1G8peRi)

Pakistani marine forces on Saturday arrested 47 Indian fishermen who were accused of violating Pakistan’s territorial waters in the Arabian Sea. (NYT http://nyti.ms/1OuJyhA)

The Americas

People with no known contact with Western civilization nonetheless harbor antibiotic-resistant microbes, according to a study of a remote Amazonian tribe. (VOA http://bit.ly/1HIlt74)

Police abuses in Mexico, including torture to obtain false confessions, remain a “common and rooted phenomenon” in the country. (El País http://bit.ly/1Eh6W2B)

There are two dozen new HIV cases in the US state of Indiana, bringing the outbreak’s total cases to 130. (Al Jazeera http://alj.am/1IZAe76)

…and the rest

A record amount of electronic waste was generated last year, according to a United Nations University report. (VOA http://bit.ly/1zyntYP)


Three world-changers: Drones, schools and sanitary pads (Humanosphere http://bit.ly/1DoKTAy)

Refugees who turn to sex work need support (Al Jazeera http://alj.am/1JRiCbh)

Kashmir’s Crossroads (FA http://fam.ag/1yw3vT2)

Mongolia’s Transitions: from Baikhgui to Baigaa (World Bank http://bit.ly/1EKjIp6)

Jobs and jail might not keep young men out of crime, but how about therapy? (Monkey Cage http://wapo.st/1CPu15p)

Mediating Maternal Health

The Hidden Opportunity for Climate Compatible Development

WASHINGTON, April 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Aspen Global Health and Development, the Global Leaders Council for Reproductive Health, and the U.S. Agency for International Development hosted a dialogue with high-level thought leaders and policymakers to explore the hidden opportunity for climate compatible development. Tony Dokoupil, host of MSNBC Shift’s Greenhouse, moderated the conversation with the Right Honorable Helen Clark, Administrator for the United Nations Development Programme, the Honorable Julia Duncan-Cassell, Minister of Gender and Development of Liberia, and Dr. Jennifer Adams, Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Bureau of Global Health at the U.S. Agency for international Development.

Watch full video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GzE6bdEvgRQ&sns=em

Logo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130417/DC96489LOGO

By December 2015, world leaders will finalize a new global agreement to address climate change. Ensuring that gender issues and population dynamics are adequately considered in the agreement is critical to its success and sustainability.

“Climate change exacerbates existing vulnerabilities and inequalities, including those related to gender,” said the Right Honorable Helen Clark. “With a new climate change agreement due to be agreed in December, and with a new sustainable development agenda due to be agreed in September, we have a chance to join the dots and press forward on gender equality, women’s empowerment, and sexual and reproductive health and rights to enable women to play their full role in addressing climate change and other global, national, and local challenges.”

“When working on issues like climate change, you have to go back to the community. Involving the community from the local level, teaching them, and empowering them, is how you carry out the message,” added the Honorable Julia Duncan-Cassell.

Far too often, climate policy does not sufficiently address sexual and reproductive health or the rights and the role of women in building resilient communities.

“Voluntary family planning is very important: it allows individuals freedom and choice and helps communities develop resilience,” said Dr. Jennifer Adams.

Global Leaders Council for Reproductive Health, established by The Aspen Institute in 2010, is composed of sixteen sitting and former heads of state, high-level policymakers, and other leaders who build political leadership for increased financial and technical support for reproductive health. The Council works to revitalize political commitments to reproductive health by increasing awareness of reproductive health issues, supporting the effective use of donor resources, and championing policies dedicated to achieving universal access to reproductive health.

Bomb blast on U.N. bus kills at least six in Somalia

NNA – At least six U.N. workers were killed in Somalia on Monday when a huge bomb destroyed a bus in the northeastern town of Garowe, police said.

The head of the United Nations in Somalia, Nick Kay, condemned the attack and said he was “shocked and appalled by (the) loss of life”.

“We have confirmed the death of six U.N. staff, including a foreign national,” police official Abdullahi Mohamed told AFP. “The bomb is believed to have been attached to the minibus and was detonated near the U.N. office.”

A U.N. representative in Somalia was unable immediately to confirm the death toll.

Witnesses and security officials suggested the explosion could also have come from a roadside bomb that was detonated as the minibus, which is used to transport staff from a guesthouse to the U.N. compound, was passing.

Garowe, in the northeastern region of Somalia, is capital of the semi-autonomous Puntland region.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but Somalia’s Al-Qaida-affiliated Shebab insurgents carry out regular attacks, targeting both government officials and foreign aid workers.

“Investigations are still ongoing to establish how it happened but I can confirm you that the U.N. compound was not affected,” Mohamed added.

The Shebab, meaning “youth”, emerged out of bitter insurgency against Ethiopia, whose troops entered Somalia in a 2006 U.S.-backed invasion to topple the Islamic Courts Union that was then controlling the capital Mogadishu.

Shebab rebels continue to stage frequent attacks in their fight to overthrow Somalia’s internationally-backed government, as well as to counter claims that they are close to defeat due to the loss of territory, regular U.S. drone strikes against their leaders and defections.

They have also carried out revenge attacks across the wider region against countries which contribute troops to the 22,000-strong African Union force in Somalia, AMISOM.

Earlier this month Shebab gunmen attacked Garissa university in the northeast of the country, killing nearly 150 people, mostly students.

Attacks against the United Nations are also common. In December four people were killed when a suicide bomber rammed a car packed with explosives into a U.N. convoy in the capital Mogadishu.

In the latest attacks, Shebab gunmen shot dead a Puntland lawmaker, Adan Haji Hussein on Saturday and on Sunday militants killed three AU troops in an ambush in the south of the war-ravaged country.–AFP


Communiqué de presse et photo — ArKay Beverages remercie la publicité négative

ArKay Beverages est une victime heureuse de la publicité négative,  avec des ventes qui ne cessent de croître

FORT LAUDERDALE, Floride, 17 avril 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — ArKay Beverages est la cible des grandes distilleries depuis son lancement en 2011. ArKay est le créateur des premières liqueurs sans alcool au monde, des mots qui devraient sonner doux à vos oreilles ! ArKay a sauvé des millions d’amateurs de boissons alcoolisées depuis son lancement, et est idéal pour les personnes qui doivent prendre des médicaments, les personnes âgées ou les personnes qui ne peuvent plus boire d’alcool pour diverses raisons.

Une photo accompagnant ce communiqué est disponible sur le site http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=32185

Malheureusement, cela ne plaît pas aux grandes distilleries qui estiment qu’ArKay leur prend des parts de marché et elles essaient donc activement de nuire à l’image de l’entreprise.

Leur mode opératoire est relativement simple. Elles paient des gens pour publier des vidéos dégradantes sur YouTube. Elles montrent de fausses critiques qui boivent une boisson ArKay devant la caméra et en parlent négativement, disant qu’ArKay est fabriqué à base de vernis à ongles ou que ça les fait vomir. Plutôt dégoûtant, vous ne trouvez pas ?

La vérité est que cette publicité négative aide en fait la société ArKay plus qu’elle ne la blesse. Les ventes ont explosé depuis 2011, et ArKay est aujourd’hui présente dans 34 pays et ne cesse de croître.

ArKay profite assez bien de sa bonne réputation. Selon Angel David, notre responsable de marque, 70 % de nos clients sont des clients réguliers, et nous affichons nos meilleurs résultats au Royaume-Uni.

Les boissons ArKay sont bonnes pour tout le monde. Elles ne contiennent pas d’alcool, de sucre ou de matières grasses. Tout le monde peut boire des boissons ArKay tous les jours.

Les boissons ArKay ont le même aspect et goût qu’une vraie liqueur, et elles offrent un effet placebo qui vous tient à l’écart des effets enivrants et dangereux de l’alcool.

En fait, Ricardo Martinez, notre directeur commercial national, résume assez bien la situation en déclarant : « Plus nous recevons de la publicité négative, plus nos ventes augmentent, alors nous les encourageons à continuer ».

CONTACT : ArKay Beverages Inc
401 East Las Olas Bld
Suite 1400
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301, États-Unis d’Amérique
1 855 4162565


PRB: Youth Are Key to Tackling Noncommunicable Diseases in Africa

NAIROBI, Kenya, April 20, 2015 / PRNewswire — Establishing healthy behaviors among young Africans could help stem a looming regional epidemic of noncommunicable diseases like cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and chronic respiratory conditions, according to the Population Reference Bureau (PRB).

In all North African countries except Sudan, noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are already responsible for at least three-quarters of deaths. Based on current trends, the World Health Organization (WHO) projects that NCDs will become the leading cause of death in sub-Saharan Africa by 2030, surpassing AIDS and other conditions that predominate today.

The four main risk factors for NCDs are tobacco use, alcohol abuse, unhealthy diet, and insufficient exercise – behaviors that are often established in early adolescence and young adulthood and that set the stage for NCDs later in life. Focusing on youth is critical in Africa because of its large and growing number of young people. Africa has the youngest population among the world regions.

PRB, a nongovernmental organization based in Washington, D.C., released a policy brief and data sheet today at a launch event in Nairobi that present information on NCD risk factors among young people in Africa. The reports show youth in some African countries already have high levels of all of the risk factors and these are likely to rise further throughout the region unless action is taken now.

The reports were supported by the AstraZeneca Young Health Programme (YHP). At the Nairobi event, the YHP also announced forthcoming activities in the region focused on NCD prevention, including local and regional workshops implemented by NCD Child on the prevention of risk behaviors among young people.

The Population Reference Bureau (www.prb.org) informs people around the world about population, health, and the environment, and empowers them to use that information to advance the well-being of current and future generations.

YHP is a partnership among AstraZeneca, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and Plan International, with local NGO partners also implementing YHP programs on the ground. The YHP mission is to positively impact the health of adolescents in marginalized communities worldwide through research, advocacy, and on-the-ground programs focused on NCD prevention.

For more information about PRB reports, contact: Peter Goldstein, 1-202-939-5407; pgoldstein@prb.org

For more information about the AstraZeneca YHP activities, contact:
Vanessa Rhodes, +44 (0) 20 7604 8037, Vanessa.rhodes@astrazeneca.com;
For programme enquiries: Sarah Shillito, Sarah.shillito@astrazeneca.com