Archive for ‘Africa’

10/07/2020

A New Report Looks at the Illegal Trade of Plants and Animals

Human Wrongs Watch

10 July 2020 (UN Environment)* — From rhino horns, to pangolin scales to rosewood, the world has seen increases and decreases in the illicit trade of plants and animals during the recent five-year period, according to a new report from the United Nations Office on Drugs a Crime.

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Photo by Florian Fussstetter/UNEP

The World Wildlife Crime Report found that along with threatening endangered species, wildlife crimes and exploitation of nature can promote climate change as well as negatively impact public health because of zoonotic disease transmissions.

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10/07/2020

Global Acceleration Framework to Speed Up Water and Sanitation Access for All

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)* — A new mechanism launched on 9 July 2020 aims to speed up action so that people everywhere will have access to water and sanitation by the end of the decade, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

© UNICEF/Yareidy Perdomo | A woman and children use new handwashing facilities installed by UNICEF in Embratel, an informal urban settlement in Boa Vista, in northern Brazil.

The Global Acceleration Framework for SDG 6 addresses an issue which cuts across many areas of the UN’s work.

Developed by more than 30 UN entities and 40 international organizations, it outlines more efficient and coordinated support to countries to ensure global availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.

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09/07/2020

Illegal Trade in Fake or Faulty COVID-19 Products Booming, New UN Research Reveals

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)* — A surge in demand for medical products to combat COVID-19 has led to a jump in the trafficking of substandard and faulty merchandise, according to new UN research published on 8 July 2020.

World Bank/Henitsoa Rafalia | Health workers in Madagascar test citizens for COVID-19.
“Health and lives are at risk with criminals exploiting the COVID-19 crisis to cash in on public anxiety and increased demand for PPE and medications”, said Ghada Waly, Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

Among its countless other impacts, the coronavirus has further highlighted the shortcomings in regulatory and legal frameworks aimed at preventing the manufacturing and selling of these products, points out the UNODC research brief, entitled “COVID-19-related Trafficking of Medical Products as a Threat to Public Health”.

09/07/2020

Their Office in the Air: Helicopter Pilots Fighting Desert Locusts

Human Wrongs Watch

A day on the job with Miles Woodgate, a pilot conducting locust control operations in Somalia

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Miles Woodgate is part of the crew of helicopter pilots hired by FAO to spray the desert locusts in Somalia, helping to save people’s food and livelihood sources. ©FAO/Haji Dirir

8 July 2020 (FAO)* — The alarm went off a few minutes ago, before the morning call to prayer. It is now a quarter past five and still pitch-black outside. Miles Woodgate is eating breakfast and getting ready for the long day ahead fighting Desert Locusts.

This Englishman is one of the pilots conducting aerial spraying in the easternmost country of the Horn of Africa — the first time in 30 years that the security situation has allowed for this to happen in Somalia.

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09/07/2020

Rising Global Temperature Shows ‘Enormous Challenge’ of Meeting Climate Goal

Human Wrongs Watch

(UN News)* — Annual global temperature is likely to be at least 1°C warmer than pre-industrial levels in each of the coming five years, putting globally agreed climate change targets in jeopardy, new data from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) reveals.

UNICEF/Pirozzi | An 11-year-old boy finds relief from the summer heat by playing in a fountain in a historic part of the city of Samarkand, Uzbekistan. (file)

The prediction is among the findings in the UN agency’s latest Global Annual to Decadal Climate Update, released on 8 July 2020 in Geneva, which also shows that temperature could exceed 1.5°C in at least one year between now and 2024.

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09/07/2020

New Climate Predictions Assess Global Temperatures in Coming Five Years

Human Wrongs Watch

Geneva, 9 July 2020 (WMO)* – The annual mean global temperature is likely to be at least 1° Celsius above pre-industrial levels (1850-1900) in each of the coming five years (2020-2024) and there is a 20% chance that it will exceed 1.5°C in at least one year, according to new climate predictions issued by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

The Global Annual to Decadal Climate Update, led by the United Kingdom’s Met Office, provides a climate outlook for the next five years, updated annually.

09/07/2020

June Sees More Global Heat, Especially in Arctic Siberia

8 July 2020 (WMO)* — June 2020 was just 0.01°C below the record-breaking temperatures of June 2019, with exceptional heat in Arctic Siberia, according to the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S). Globally, temperatures last month were 0.53°C warmer than the average June from 1981-2010.

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Over Arctic Siberia, average temperatures reached as high as 10 °C above normal for June, fuelling severe wildfires. During both June and for the last 12 months, Siberia stands out as the region with the largest anomalies.

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08/07/2020

UN Chief Warns of Deadly Germs as Potential Bioterrorist Weapons

Human Wrongs Watch

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UNITED NATIONS, Jul 8 2020 (IPS)* – The coronavirus—which has claimed the lives of over 538,000 people and infected more than 11.6 million worldwide—has destabilized virtually every facet of human life ever since its outbreak in late December.

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Credit: United Nations

Providing a grim economic scenario of the devastation caused by the pandemic– including rising poverty, hunger and unemployment– UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned last week of the possibility of an even worse disaster: the risks of bioterrorist attacks deploying deadly germs.

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08/07/2020

All You Need Is Love?

Human Wrongs Watch

By James Ballantyne*

A review of Rutger Bregman’s new book on human kindness.

PublicDomainPictures.net/Linnaea Mallette. CC0 1.0.

“Can we dare to think people are kind, and shape organisations around this view?”

7 July 2020 (openDemocracy)* — That’s the question Rutger Bregman examines in his latest book Humankind, and it’s one that anyone involved in youth and community work like me wrestles with on a daily basis. But is Bregman’s optimistic analysis grounded in reality?

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08/07/2020

Racism and the Culture of War

Human Wrongs Watch

By David Adams | Transition to a Culture of Peace – TRANSCEND Media Service*

To succeed, the struggle against racism needs to be understood in the context of the struggle against the culture of war.

In my history of the culture of war, I quote Malcolm X at length:

“”Book after book showed me how the white man had brought upon the world’s black, brown, red, and yellow peoples every variety of the sufferings of exploitation. I saw how since the sixteenth century, the so-called “Christian trader” white man began to ply the seas in his lust for Asian and African empires, and plunder, and power… First, always “religiously,” he branded “heathen” and “pagan” labels upon ancient non-white cultures and civilizations. The stage thus set, he then turned upon his non-white victims his weapons of war.”

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