An Airstrike in Syria Kills the Ceasefire and the Peace Talks and 50 People

The Syrian cessation of hostilities was violently fractured. “Air strikes on two markets in northwest Syria have killed more than 50 people, local sources told Al Jazeera, as Syria’s opposition negotiators said they were leaving peace talks that were held in Geneva. The strikes were among the deadliest since a ceasefire took effect in Syria at the end of February, Rami Abdurrahman, chief of the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said. The opposition’s Higher Negotiations Committee (HNC) announced its delegation was leaving Geneva because no advances were made in the talks. Riad Hijab, the head of the HNC, had earlier warned that the delegation would leave Switzerland if the attacks on rebel-held towns would not stop. It was not clear if Tuesday’s air strikes were carried out by Syrian or Russian war planes that have been deployed to Syria to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.” (Al Jazeera

Turkey Demands Its Quid for Europe’s Quo…”Turkey could easily call off the migrant deal struck with the European Union if visa rules for Turks aren’t relaxed within the next two months, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Tuesday, sounding a warning over a controversial deal which has stemmed much of the human tide across the Aegean Sea. The March 18 deal stipulates that anyone arriving on Greek islands from Turkey will be sent back unless they successfully apply for asylum in Greece. For every Syrian sent back, the EU will take another Syrian directly from Turkey. In return, Ankara was granted billions of euros to deal with the more than 2.7 million Syrian refugees already living in Turkey and promised a loosening of the visa regime governing Turkish citizens.” (WaPo

Is this UN meeting the beginning of the end of the war on drugs? The UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) kicks off this week for several days of high level discussions about the UN’s role in narcotic control. (CBC

Report of the Day…“Investing in Nutrition” finds than for an  additional $2 billion per year for 10 years, 2.2 million children’s lives could be saved and stunting reduced by 50 million. (Foundation for Development )

Quote of the Day…”I think Africa has done well, by and large the coups have more or less ended, generals are remaining in their barracks, but we are creating situations which may bring them back,”  Kofi Annan, warning against Third Termism in Africa (All Africa )


A vehicle in the motorcade of the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations struck and killed a young boy in Cameroon on Monday during a visit to the Lake Chad region where countries have been targeted by the Boko Haram group. (Reuters

Attackers armed with guns and grenades burst into a bar and opened fire, killing a woman and seriously wounding three other customers in Burundi’s capital Bujumbura on Monday night, police said. (Reuters

Two high-profile security conferences in Ethiopia have underlined the significance Western policymakers attach to enlisting African support when shoring up global security and meeting the growing terrorist threat. (DW

Thousands of cancer patients in Uganda will be left untreated for months after the nation’s only radiotherapy machine broke down, triggering public criticism about underfunding in the health system weeks after the president’s re-election. (Reuters

Somalia’s government said between 200 and 300 Somalis may have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea while trying to cross illegally to Europe, based on information it has gathered in the past two days from the Somali diaspora and its embassy in Egypt. (Reuters

Malawi has started moving 10,000 Mozambique asylum seekers back from the border to the newly reopened Luwani camp in southeastern Malawi. (VOA


President Barack Obama will arrive in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday for a high stakes meeting with King Salman that comes at a moment of immense tension in the kingdom’s relations with the U.S., its neighbors in the Middle East and even its own citizens. (Time

The U.N. envoy to Yemen sought on Tuesday to persuade Yemen’s Houthi group to send representatives to peace talks in Kuwait as a shaky truce declared this month teetered near collapse, delegates said. (Reuters

The Syrian government’s chief negotiator said President Bashar al-Assad’s future was not up for discussion at peace talks, underlining the bleak prospects for reviving U.N.-led negotiations postponed by the opposition. (Reuters

A riot erupted in a Cairo suburb on Tuesday after a policeman shot three people after an argument over the price of a cup of tea, killing one of them, the Interior Ministry and witnesses said. (Reuters


A Taliban suicide bomb and gun assault on a government security building during Tuesday morning rush hour in central Kabul killed at least 28 people and wounded more than 320, in the deadliest single attack in the Afghan capital since 2011. (Reuters

Anxiety is growing among parents in eastern China about contaminated soil and underground water after nearly 500 students from a middle school developed illnesses that are possibly linked to chemical pollution at a nearby site. (VOA

Chinese authorities have asked Apple to turn over source code twice in the past two years, but the company refused in both cases, Apple general counsel Bruce Sewell told a hearing of the U.S. House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Tuesday. (Apple Insider

Campaigns will not be allowed in Thailand in the run-up to an August referendum on a new constitution that the military hopes will usher in stable politics but which critics say will stifle democracy, a senior government official said on Tuesday. (Reuters

A U.N. rights expert warned Tuesday of “serious threats” to the independence of the press in Japan, including laws meant to protect coverage fairness and national security that he said could work as censorship. (AP

The Americas

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff canceled a scheduled trip to New York to participate in a climate event at the United Nations this week, two sources from the presidential palace said. (Reuters

Earthquake-stricken Ecuador faced the grim reality of recovering more bodies than survivors as rescue efforts moved into a third day on Tuesday and the death toll climbed to nearly 500. (Reuters

Chile’s health ministry says the mosquito that transmits the Zika virus has been found in the South American country. (AP

Flooding in and around the US city of Houston has killed at least five people and prompted mass rescues, reports said. (AFP

Poor Brazilians have been lured to coffee plantations with promises of good wages only to find themselves living in squalor and debt bondage, although the government has taken steps to name and shame farms involved in modern slavery, aid agencies said. (VOA

Scientists say the Sierra’s eastern front is long overdue for a large earthquake along the California-Nevada line, where a magnitude-7 event expected on average every 30 years hasn’t occurred in six decades. (AP

…and the rest

The European Commission says it will be providing 700 million euros in emergency humanitarian funding for Greece until 2018 to help it deal with the massive refugee crisis that has seen tens of thousands of people stranded in the country — the first time such funding has been used to help a European Union member. (AP

Over one hundred developing countries continue to be left out of global tax cooperation negotiations despite leaks such as the Panama papers showing the high cost of tax avoidance. (IPS


‘White Savior Barbie’ Hilariously Parodies Volunteer Selfies In Africa (Huffington Post

To win the war on drugs, stop brutalising farmers who grow them (Guardian

Death to the Developing World (WhyDev

The Empire’s New Clothes? Conjuring Growth from the TPP (IPS

The construction industry must step up on human rights (Guardian

What have 3 years of campaigning on Big Food achieved? What still needs to happen? (From Poverty to Power

IMF doesn’t need a bigger empire to operate a better safety net (The Intrepreter

10 of the best humanitarians to follow on social media (Guardian

A humanitarian’s guide to choosing the next UN chief (IRIN

6 ways to innovate for 2030 (Devex