Archive for April 17th, 2017

17/04/2017

“We Can’t Protest So We Pray”

Human Wrongs Watch

BAHIR DAR, Apr 17 2017 (IPS) – As dawn breaks in Bahir Dar, men prepare boats beside Lake Tana to take to its island monasteries the tourists that are starting to return.
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Woman and child outside a Gonder church with crosses marked in ash on their foreheads. Credit: James Jeffrey/IPS

Meanwhile, traffic flows across the same bridge spanning the Blue Nile that six months ago was crossed by a huge but peaceful protest march.

But only a mile farther the march ended in the shooting of unarmed protesters by security forces, leaving Bahir Dar stunned for months.

Events last August in the prominent Amhara cities of Bahir Dar (the region’s capital) and Gonder (the former historical seat of Ethiopian rule) signalled the spreading of the original Oromo protests to Ethiopia’s second most populace region.

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17/04/2017

Famine Looms for Millions – Countries Urged to ‘Dig Deep into Reserves of Common Humanity’

Human Wrongs Watch

Senior United Nations officials on 13 April 2017 refocused the spotlight on Secretary-General António Guterres’ mid-February ‘call to action’ on behalf of some 20 million people across four countries that now face the risk of famine.
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Women in Ganyiel, Unity state, South Sudan, collecting bags of food. The situation in Ganyiel is dire, with thousands of people having fled to the area from famine-stricken Leer and Mayendit counties. Photo: OCHA/Gemma Connell

“The crises in these four countries are protracted and complex – and the impacts will be felt for years,” said Stephen O’Brien, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, warning that the numbers are staggering as millions in South Sudan, Somalia, Yemen and north-east Nigeria are slipping deeper into crisis.

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17/04/2017

Two Billion People Relying on Sources of ‘Dirty’, Contaminated Drinking-Water 

Against the backdrop of almost two billion people around the world relying on sources of drinking-water contaminated with faeces, the UN has called on countries to “radically” increase investments in water and sanitation infrastructure not only to protect their populations from deadly diseases but also to ensure that they are able to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
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Water, along with pollutants and contaminating agents, flows into a canal in Maputo, Mozambique. (File) Photo: John Hogg / World Bank | Source: UN News Centre 

“Contaminated drinking-water is estimated to cause more than 500,000 diarrhoeal deaths each year and is a major factor in several neglected tropical diseases, including intestinal worms, schistosomiasis, and trachoma,” on 13 April 2017  said Maria Neira, the Director of Department of Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health at the UN World Health Organization (WHO).*

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