Two United Nations agencies have on 1 July 2015 unveiled a series of new guidelines aimed at addressing the health risks posed by the increasing number and intensity of climate change-related heat waves affecting the planet, as warm weather alerts spread across Europe following soaring temperatures that killed hundreds of people in India and Pakistan last month.
Degraded dryland ecossystems put at risk the social and economic well-being of millions of people. Photo: Binh Thuan, Thien Anh Huynh/Vietnam/UNEP
The set of guidelines, jointly produced by the UN World Health Organization (WHO) and World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and entitled Heatwaves and Health: Guidance on Warning-System Development, will seek to alert decision-makers, health services and the general public through the systematic development of so-called heatwave early warning systems which, in turn, will hope to trigger timely action in reducing the effects of hot-weather extremes on health.
Much more needs to be done to reverse the trend of an ever increasing number of children forced to work as a result of the conflict in Syria often “carrying heavy loads, being exposed to pesticides and toxic chemicals, and working long hours,” according to a joint report released on 2 July 2015 by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and Save the Children.
A boy in northern Syria uses a sponge to collect spilled fuel from an oil drum. Photo: Ahmad Baroudi/Save the Children | Source: UN
“Syria’s children are paying a heavy price for the world’s failure to put an end to the conflict”, says a joint press release issued on the report in Amman, Jordan.
“The report shows that inside Syria, children are now contributing to the family income in more than three quarters of surveyed households, In Jordan, close to half of all Syrian refugee children are now the joint or sole family breadwinners in surveyed households, while in some parts of Lebanon, children as young as six years old are reportedly working,” the agencies said.
By Pepe Escobar, RT*
Forget the mad spinning. Here it is, in a nutshell, what it really takes for Iran and the P5+1 to clinch a game-changing nuclear deal before the new July 7 deadline.
**Author: Cary Bass | Wikimedia Commons
Iran and the P5+1 agreed in Lausanne on a “comprehensive plan of action,” taking into account delicate constitutional considerations in both the US and Iran.
A crucial part of the plan is the mechanism to get rid of sanctions.
Lausanne – and now Vienna – is not a treaty; it’s an action plan. There will be a declaration when a deal is reached. But there won’t be a signing ceremony.
The next important step is what happens at the UN Security Council (UNSC). All the concerned parties at the UNSC will endorse a declaration, and a resolution – which is still being negotiated – will render null and void all previous sanctions resolutions.
As it stands, all the parties – except the US government – want to go to the UNSC as soon as possible. Washington remains, at best, reticent. Continue reading
By Johan Galtung*
1 July 2015 – TRANSCEND Media Service – We have been revisited, not only Charleston SC, not only the USA; the whole world by the shocking massacre in the iconic Emanuel Church.
It hit this aging Norwegian male deep in the heart; once a young man, sociology professor at Columbia University, NY, as American as any with that passport, deeply involved in the desegregation conflict in Charlottesville, VA.
Like millions others now trying to come to grips with this enormity of history moving backward to comprehend, searching for “how could it have been avoided”; any solution anywhere?
Using an old tested method, “what does this remind me of”, Anders Behring Breivik, a fellow Norwegian, came up. On 22 July 2011, first a bomb at a government building killing seven, then a massacre of young laborites at an island, killing 69 more.
Having researched the case, I see him located in a triangle with his pure, blond and blue-eyed Norway of believers in true Christianity in one corner, threatened by Muslim invasion; the traitors to that society–the Labor government, the laborites in the second, and in the third corner those who stand up, do something against the Muslim menace: Israel, the hard Zionists.
Several senior United Nations officials on 1 July 2015 strongly urged Southeast Asian countries to back a “people-centred” approach to migration by, among others, expanding avenues for safe and legal migration, while stepping up law enforcement to put a stop to human trafficking.
A rescued boat woman and her two children eat some welcome food at a centre in Kuala Cangkoi, Indonesia. Photo: UNHCR
Welcoming the convening of an emergency meeting to be held on 2 July by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to address a people-centred approach for tackling the irregular migration in the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea, the officials called for a comprehensive and durable solution to this issue.
War, conflict or persecution forced most of the 137,000 desperate people who made the perilous journey to cross the Mediterranean Sea into Europe during the first six months of 2015, making this primarily a refugee crisis, a new report from the United Nations refugee agency on 1 July 2015 said.
Asylum-seekers in a holding centre on Greece’s Samos Island. Photo: UNHCR/A. D’Amato
The opening lines of the The sea route to Europe: The Mediterranean passage in the age of refugees, compiled by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, put the challenges facing Europe, the wider international community and humanitarian actors in stark relief.
Cuba has become the world’s first country to eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV and syphilis, “a major victory in our long fight against HIV and sexually transmitted infections, and an important step towards having an AIDS-free generation,” the World Health Organization on 30 June 2015 announced.
PAHO-WHO have been working with partners in Cuba and other countries in the Americas to implement a regional initiative to eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV and syphilis. Photo: PAHO/WHO
“Eliminating transmission of a virus is one of the greatest public health achievements possible,” WHO Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan said in a news release validating Cuba’s achievement.
United Nations agencies tracking access to water and sanitation targets against the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on 30 June 2015 warned tthat the lack of progress on sanitation threatens to undermine the child survival and health benefits from gains in access to safe drinking water.
Two small children wash their hands with soap at a hand-washing station at the Sayariy Warmi early childhood development (ECD) centre in Sucre, Bolivia. Photo: UNICEF/NYHQ2013-1499/Pirozzi
According to the Joint Monitoring Programme report, Progress on Sanitation and Drinking Water: 2015 Update and MDG Assessment, released on 30 June by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Health Organization (WHO), one in every three, or 2.4 billion people on the planet, are still without sanitation facilities – including 946 million people who defecate in the open.