After Paris: Now Comes the Hard Part

A climate deal has been struck! On Saturday evening, French Foreign minister Laurent Fabius clanged his gavel and the Paris Agreement entered into force. Now, countries have to actually put into place the mechanisms to which they agreed in Paris. That will be tough for many countries. “With nearly every nation on earth having now pledged to gradually reduce emissions of the heat-trapping gases that are warming the planet — a universal commitment that had eluded negotiators and activists since the first Earth Day summit meeting, in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 — much of the burden for maintaining the momentum now shifts back to the countries to figure out, and put in place, the concrete steps needed to deliver on their pledges.  The task may prove most challenging for India, which is struggling to lift more than half of its population of 1.25 billion out of poverty and to provide basic electricity to 300 million of them. Rich countries are intent that India not get stuck on a coal-dependent development path.”  (NYT )

The text of the Paris Agreement

Quote of the Weekend… “It always seems impossible until it’s done,” Laurent Fabius, channeling Nelson Mandela. (UN Dispatch )

Women Win Seats in Historic Saudi Elections….”At least 19 Saudi women have won seats in historic municipal elections that were open to female voters and candidates for the first time here. Among them are nationally prominent women, as well as some little known beyond their home towns…This election was the first in which women could vote and run as candidates, and many have portrayed it as a progressive step toward democracy and gender equality. Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world that bans women from driving and requires its female citizen to provide a male guardian’s approval for such basic matters as traveling, working and studying, as well as for marriage and being admitted to hospitals.”  (WaPo


The U.S. government asked its citizens to leave Burundi as soon as possible Sunday after 87 people were killed Friday in an escalation of the violence surrounding the disputed third term of President Pierre Nkurunziza. (AP

Soldiers besieging the home of the leader of a Shiite movement accused of trying to assassinate Nigeria’s army chief have shot and killed at least 12 people, the Islamic group said early Sunday. (AP

Two people were killed Sunday as heavy-weapons fire and clashes broke out in the Muslim district of the Central African Republic capital marring a referendum on a new constitution aimed at ending years of sectarian strife. (AFP

Niger will audit its electoral register ahead of a presidential election in February 2016 following demands from opposition parties, Prime Minister Brigi Rafini said on state television. (Reuters

Luxembourg is responding to France’s call for help against extremism by doubling its troop numbers in Mali to a grand total of two. (Al Bawaba


Rebels entrenched in an eastern suburb of Damascus fired volleys of mortar shells into the Syrian capital on Sunday, killing three people, including a child, and wounding 33, Syria’s state-run news agency and residents said. Government forces hit back with airstrikes that activists said killed at least 28 people. (AP

Yemeni government and rebel representatives meet in Switzerland Tuesday for UN-brokered peace talks, likely to be accompanied by a ceasefire, aimed at ending a deadly conflict exploited by jihadists. (AFP

Egypt must immediately release a 14-year-old boy who says he was sexually abused in detention by police using a wooden stick and bring his alleged torturers to justice, Amnesty International said. (Reuters

Schools in the war-torn Libyan city of Benghazi reopened Sunday for the first time in a year and a half, although international peace efforts have yet to quell the fighting there. (AFP


Officials in northwestern Pakistan say a bomb blast ripped through a busy clothing market Sunday, killing at least 23 people and wounding about 55 others.  (VOA

Following her party’s landmark election win, Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi vowed to give her desperately poor country a much-needed face-lift. (AP

Indonesia: Virtually all rubbish from Jakarta –- a sprawling city of about 10 million with a booming middle class –- is dumped an hour’s drive away at Bantar Gebang, in the city of Bekasi, where towering mountains of trash have risen skyward as the capital grows bigger and wealthier. (AP

The Americas

Spanish police have arrested a man accused of performing more than 100 forced abortions on women fighters with Colombia’s largest rebel group, the Farc. (BBC

Tens of thousands of Brazilians took to the streets on Sunday to demand President Dilma Rousseff’s ouster, but the first nationwide protests since formal impeachment proceedings began were smaller than similar events earlier this year. (Reuters

…and the rest

Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Sunday she wanted to “drastically decrease” the number of refugees coming to Germany, signaling a compromise to critics of her open-door policy from within her conservatives on the eve of a party congress. (Reuters

Germany: Leipzig police say 69 officers have been injured in clashes with rioting leftwing protesters and that they had to use tear gas and water cannons to disperse the group. (AP


The Paris Agreement is a triumph of diplomacy. (UN Dispatch

Indian Women Flout Menstrual Taboos By Saying They’re #HappyToBleed (Goats and Soda

Climate finance: what was actually agreed in Paris? (ODI

Anti-racism in Latin America discussion arrives at Harvard (Africa is a Country

Microfinance on the Margin (Across Two Worlds

Harnessing the power of digital health to eliminate mother-to-child HIV transmission (Devex

Ten days that didn’t shake the world: three big climate finance failures at COP 21 (DevPolicy

WTF Friday, 12/11/2015 (Wronging Rights