Daily Archives: May 21, 2015

UN and Africa: focus on South Sudan, children in Africa and tourism in Tanzania

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Dozens of children have been killed in the latest escalation of violence in South Sudan’s oil-rich Unity state, the UN agency says. Photo: UNICEF

Armed youths lead killings in South Sudan, says UNICEF

Children have been raped, abducted and killed amid escalating conflict in South Sudan as warring groups try to make ground ahead of the rainy season, the UN Children’s Fund has said. UNICEF says survivors have been forced to flee armed groups in Unity State and seek shelter in camps or even hide in swamp land. The violence is reportedly ongoing and comes despite discussions with all armed groups to respect the rights of civilians, as Daniel Johnson reports from Geneva.

Efforts made to reduce pesticide risk to children

Highly hazardous pesticides. Photo: FAO/Asim Hafeez

Efforts are underway to minimize the risks to children in Africa exposed to pesticides used during agricultural production.According to figures released by the United Nations, around four million children globally are working in the agriculture sector. But now a new tool is being released to promote the safer use of pesticides.Bernd Seiffert is the UN Food and Agriculture Organization’s focal point for Child Labour Prevention in Agriculture.Sandra Ferrari asked him why the tool is needed.

Diversification key to future of tourism industry in Tanzania

Aerial view of Mount Kilimanjaro. UN Photo/Mark Garten

Diversification is the key to future of the tourism industry in Tanzania, according to a report by the World Bank. With popular attractions such as Mount Kilimanjaro, wildlife parks and the archipelago of Zanzibar, Tanzania is home to some of Africa’s most popular tourist destinations. Tourism is the main foreign exchange earner for the Tanzanian economy. It’s also one of the fastest growing industries in the East African country. A’Melody Lee reports.

Producer/Presenter: Assumpta Massoi
Production Assistant: Sandra Guy
Studio Engineer: Shalako Gordon
Duration: 10’00″

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With no peace process to speak of, the fighting in South Sudan has escalated in recent weeks. Four civilians, including a woman and a child, were killed on Tuesday when two mortar bombs exploded inside a U.N. compound in the town of Melut in South Sudan’s Upper Nile state, the U.N. reported on Wednesday as rebel forces and government troops battled for control of a strategic oil hub…Fighting has recently intensified in South Sudan’s Upper Nile and Unity states as government troops and rebel forces fight for control of territory. At stake are the Upper Nile oil fields of Paloch, which the rebels said they were poised to seize on Wednesday. As the country’s last remaining functional oil fields, they are crucial for South Sudan’s increasingly vulnerable economy. (AP http://yhoo.it/1HhQCKD)

A Tiny Glimmer of Hope for Rohingya Refugees Adrift at Sea...Indonesia and Malaysia have agreed to provide temporary shelter and assistance to thousands of Rohingya migrants still stranded at sea in Southeast Asia, but they have stopped short of offering to find their boats and bring them ashore. (IRIN http://bit.ly/1HhLlme)

ISIS Captures UNESCO Heritage City…Destruction of Artifacts to Follow? “Islamic State insurgents stormed the historic Syrian city of Palmyra on Wednesday, fighting off pro-government forces who withdrew after evacuating most of the civilian population, state television said. The capture of Palmyra is the first time the al Qaeda offshoot has taken control of a city directly from the Syrian army and allied forces, which have already lost ground in the northwest and south to other insurgent groups in recent weeks. The central city, also known as Tadmur, is built alongside the remains of a oasis civilization whose colonnaded streets, temple and theater have stood for 2,000 years.” (WaPo http://reut.rs/1dlMr9y)

Quote of the Day: “(With child marriage) we are sanctioning rape, we are sanctioning abduction, we are sanctioning a modern form of slavery, it’s trafficking, it’s forced labor.” – Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda, a human rights lawyer whose mother and sister were both wed as children in her native Zimbabwe. (Reuters http://bit.ly/1HhS0wI)

World responds to Rohingya crisis

Turkey says it is donating $1 million to the International Organization for Migration and the U.N. refugee agency to help ease Southeast Asia’s migrant crisis and is exploring ways of organizing a humanitarian aid operation to reach Rohingya Muslims and Bangladeshis stranded at sea. (AP http://yhoo.it/1HhQGtU)

Gambia’s government says it is willing to resettle Muslim Rohingya migrants stranded at sea after fleeing predominantly Buddhist Myanmar. (AP http://yhoo.it/1dkOx9y)

Somalia’s Al-Qaeda-affiliated Shebab militants on Wednesday condemned Myanmar’s “savage Buddhists” and urged Southeast Asia’s Muslims to come to the aid of Rohingya Muslim boat people. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1HhQxGH)

Africa

Burundi’s President Pierre Nkurunziza delayed parliamentary and local elections until June 5, following protests and a coup attempt. (VOA http://bit.ly/1efTosI)

An unidentified gunman on Wednesday shot at United Nations vehicles in Mali’s capital Bamako and targeted a house where U.N. staff were staying, wounding a guard, the world body said. (Reuters http://bit.ly/1dkPYF7)

At least 65 people are confirmed to have died in a nearly five-month-old cholera outbreak in Kenya, with infections also continuing to rise in the capital Nairobi, health officials said Wednesday. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1HhQECl)

The only international observers during Ethiopia’s elections Sunday will be from the African Union, with opposition parties already feeling the AU observers are not demanding enough in their criticism of Ethiopia’s election process, which is dominated by the ruling party. (VOA http://bit.ly/1Lm3GCB)

It’s becoming more and more difficult to find food in Cameroon’s Far North region, residents say, not only because the annual lean season is underway, but insecurity caused by Boko Haram has severely disrupted farming and cross-border trade. (IRIN http://bit.ly/1AmeEXA)

Opposition leader Adrien Houngbedji was on Wednesday elected head of Benin’s national assembly, possibly threatening the president’s hopes of pushing through a controversial amendment to the constitution. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1HhQDhv)

Nigerian prosecutors on Wednesday withdrew murder charges against a 15-year-old girl who was accused of using rat poison to kill the 35-year-old man she had married. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1HhQF9a)

Guinea’s opposition leader said on Wednesday he was “disappointed” by talks with President Alpha Conde aimed at ending a political deadlock which has led to deadly nationwide protests. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1dkOHhb)

A journalist and rights activist known for his outspoken criticism of the humanitarian crisis in southeastern Niger has been arrested for “collaborating” with Boko Haram Islamists, the interior minister said Wednesday. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1HhQD1f)

Malawi police on Wednesday said they had arrested four people suspected of murdering an albino man five months ago to sell his bones for witchcraft. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1dkOBWR)

As the eLearning Africa conference gets underway in Addis Ababa, there is a growing recognition that online courses can boost further education access. (Guardian http://bit.ly/1HhLCWp)

MENA

U.N. aid agencies report the humanitarian impact of the nearly two month Saudi-led bombing campaign in Yemen and a blockade of fuel and other imported relief supplies is enormous. (VOA http://bit.ly/1Lm3KSY)

Iran will allow the United Nations to inspect a Yemen-bound aid ship at the regional U.N. hub in Djibouti, Tehran’s deputy foreign minister was quoted as saying on Wednesday, offering a chance to avert a showdown with Saudi-led forces. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/1dkOyKD)

Asia

Nepal must take lessons from earthquake-hit countries such as Mexico and strictly enforce existing building laws as it prepares to rebuild from two major quakes, a senior United Nations official said Wednesday. (VOA http://bit.ly/1Lm3MKs)

China’s heyday as the “world’s factory” is fading as labor costs rise and export demand has faded. To address that and other challenges, the world’s second-largest economy has unveiled a plan to beef up its presence as a global manufacturing power. (VOA http://bit.ly/1efTrVm)

The Philippines is a signatory to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and its Optional Protocols, and it has vowed to eradicate the practice; the recruitment of children for use in combat is officially prohibited under two laws pertaining to child labor and abuse. But progress is slow. (IRIN http://bit.ly/1HhLypr)

Nepal must take lessons from earthquake-hit countries such as Mexico and strictly enforce existing building laws as it prepares to rebuild from two major quakes, a senior United Nations official said Wednesday. (AP http://yhoo.it/1HhQwCK)

The Americas

Rescuers in Colombia are continuing to search for victims of a landslide which hit the town of Salgar on Monday but hopes are fading for more survivors. The number of bodies retrieved from the debris in north-western Antioquia province rose to 78. (BBC http://bbc.in/1Amesrs)

Uruguay has created a commission to probe human rights violations perpetrated from 1968 to 1985 as the government cracked down brutally on a leftist rebellion. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1dkOHOb)

The decapitated body of a blogger known for denouncing corrupt politicians has been found in a rural zone in southeastern Brazil’s Minas Gerais state, police said Wednesday. (AP http://yhoo.it/1HhQGdl)

Rising seas, thawing permafrost and longer wildfires caused by warmer global temperatures threaten U.S. military bases and will change the way the U.S. armed services defend the country, President Barack Obama is set to say on Wednesday. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/1HhQx9V)

…and the rest

France gave broad backing on Wednesday to an EU scheme to share out asylum-seekers among EU states to deal with a surge of migrants, after a week of ambiguity that reflected growing public opposition to immigration. (Reuters http://bit.ly/1dkQ6Eq)

The International Committee of the Red Cross said on Wednesday it had visited two men captured in a part of eastern Ukraine hit by separatist conflict and that they were now in hospital in the capital Kiev. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/1HhQD1h)

Opinion/Blogs

Europe is Totally Ignoring the Root Causes of Migration Across the Mediterranean (UN Dispatch http://bit.ly/1Amm8tQ)

From Quarantine To Appeasement–Howard French takes big issue with Gayle Smith’s USAID nomination.  (Foreign Policy http://atfp.co/1GpTtoL)

Doing development differently: Breaking the glass ceiling (Devex http://bit.ly/1GpTNDS)

Oh dear. Another unreadable European Report on Development. Good stats on finance (FFD) though. (From Poverty to Power http://bit.ly/1Bcwyr4)

Nigeria’s bill targeting FGM is a positive step, but must be backed by investment (Guardian http://bit.ly/1efT9Os)

The U.N. at 70: Time to Prioritise Human Rights for All, for Current and Future Generations (IPS http://bit.ly/1efTe4N)

In EU, 0.7 percent aid target under threat (Devex http://bit.ly/1HtTWoz)

Financing for development: this year’s big debate (DevPolicy http://bit.ly/1GpTQzJ)

Getting beyond the mirage of external validity (Development Impact http://bit.ly/1BcwqI4)
A Vision for the African Development Bank (Addis Fortune http://bit.ly/1HhRv62)

Discussion

comments…

Risen Energy to Invest a Total of 96.72 million USD to Set Up Internet Finance and Financial Leasing Subsidiaries

NINGBO, China, May 21, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Leading professional solar PV manufacturer Risen Energy Co., Ltd will set up an internet finance service subsidiary to create a new ecosystem of energy production and consumption, investment and financing.

The company will make use of its modern digital and mobile communications and internet technology by combining new energy power stations and the internet through cloud computing and big data. The registered capital for the project is about 16.12 million USD to be supplied by Risen.

Moreover, Risen Energy and wholly owned subsidiary, Risen Energy (HongKong) Co., Ltd also plan to set up Risen Energy (Shanghai) Financial Leasing Co., Ltd. Registered capital is 80.6 million USD and once established, Risen Energy and Risen Energy (HongKong) will hold 55% and 45% of the new company’s shares respectively.

Setting up the two companies will accelerate Risen Group’s promotion of the ‘new energy + financial innovation + internet’ business, and will help implement the structure and strategic upgrade plan of the energy internet financial ecosystem. It will also expand the business scope, improving core competitiveness, profitability and risk resistance, which will form the new profit growth point.

Due to the long-time stable income of new energy power stations and the channels of finance leasing companies, users can invest via the internet finance service subsidiary. For the duration of the investment, interest is paid to users automatically and when finished, the debt repurchase transaction can be completed, achieving the organic integration of new energy power stations and internet finance.

By using financial leasing as the precursor and making the new energy power companies the main target markets, Risen Energy (Shanghai) Financial Leasing Co., Ltd will rely on the industrial base, channels and customers of Risen Energy to innovate PV financial products and profit modules in financial leasing and gradually expand to construction of solar supporting facilities with the innovative awareness of a professional finance lease management team and the perfect market.

Chairman Lin said that in future, Risen Energy (Shanghai) Financial Leasing Co., Ltd will develop in other industries along with national industrial policies,enabling it to become a comprehensive financial leasing company in the field of new energy, and laying a solid foundation for achieving the goal of greater global development.

New .ngo and .ong Domains Now Available to NGOs Worldwide

– Public Interest Registry Launches OnGood Community Website to Connect NGOs with Donors and Supporters

RESTON, Virginia, May 21, 2015 / PRNewswire — After three years of research and development by Public Interest Registry, the nonprofit operator of the .org domain, OnGood is now generally available to non-governmental organisations (NGOs) worldwide. Anchored by the new .ngo and .ong domain bundle, OnGood is a suite of online services exclusively for NGOs and nonprofits to help strengthen their online presence, improve visibility, and better connect with supporters.

Designed to be the first online global directory of NGOs, OnGood brings these organisations together through the .ngo and .ong domain names – brand new, exclusive domain names only available to validated NGOs. Now, registrants have the opportunity to create a customisable online profile to showcase their missions, campaigns, multimedia content and other information, and even collect donations. Additionally, Internet users around the globe can easily search OnGood for organisations of interest, while having the reassurance that websites ending in .ngo and .ong represent genuine, lawful and independent NGOs.

“Since its inception, the Internet has been a forum to share information and connect with others, giving NGOs a much needed platform to promote their missions. But the landscape has become increasingly cluttered, making it difficult for Internet users to determine which organisations are truly trustworthy,” said Brian Cute, CEO of Public Interest Registry. “After speaking with more than 16,000 fellow NGOs and nonprofits in more than 40 countries, we learned that credibility was one of their biggest challenges, so we developed OnGood to be part of the solution. By combining the value of a validated domain name identity with a comprehensive community website, OnGood will be the online home for nonprofits and NGOs of all sizes.”

Upon registration, members receive the .ngo domain name and the .ong domain name as a bundle. Both .ngo and .ong are reflective of the abbreviations for the term “non-governmental organization” – NGO for English and ONG for romance languages. For each domain bundle registration, members receive one profile page in the OnGood directory, allowing them to have different pages for various causes and campaigns, and the ability to link them or keep them separate.

Internet users can use OnGood to search for NGOs by cause, geography, keyword and more. Search results display in multiple viewing options based on user preferences, including a global map. OnGood is optimized for desktop, tablet and mobile viewing and is available in five languages: English, French, German, Spanish and Portuguese.

To become OnGood members, all NGOs must meet specific eligibility requirements and undergo a validation process. Public Interest Registry worked closely with the global NGO community to develop a validation process which requires all OnGood members to: (1) act in the public interest; (2) be non-profit-making; (3) have limited government influence; (4) be comprised of independent staff or members; (5) be actively pursuing their missions; (6) operate in a structured manner; and (7) be lawful. Ongoing audits will be conducted to ensure the credibility of the OnGood community and users will be able to report questionable activity.

For more information, please visit OnGood at www.OnGood.ngo. To register for OnGood, please visit an accredited registrar.

About Public Interest Registry
Public Interest Registry is a nonprofit organisation that operates the .org top-level domain — the world’s third largest “generic” top-level domain with more than 10.5 million domain names registered worldwide – and the newly launched .ngo and .ong domains and OnGood community website. As an advocate for collaboration, safety and security on the Internet, Public Interest Registry’s mission is to empower the global noncommercial community to use the Internet more effectively, and to take a leadership position among Internet stakeholders on policy and other issues relating to the domain naming system. Public Interest Registry was founded by the Internet Society (internetsociety.org) in 2002 and is based in Reston, Virginia, USA.

Contact:
Lindsay Hyman / Jamie Rismiller
+1-202-223-9260
pir@allisonpr.com