D-(eadline) Day for South Sudan Peace Talks

Failure to sign a peace accord by the end of the day today could mean sanctions imposed on South Sudanese leaders, at least that’s what Barack Obama and others have warned. “South Sudanese President Salva Kiir arrived in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Adaba, on Sunday for peace talks with rebel leaders and regional presidents, in a reversal of an earlier decision not to attend because of a split in rebel forces. Before leaving the South Sudanese capital, Juba, Kiir warned, however, that it would not be possible to sign a lasting deal unless all opposition factions were included…The latest round of negotiations, which is being mediated by the regional eight-nation Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the United Nations, African Union, China and a “troika” of Britain, Norway and the United States, got under way on August 6.” (DW http://bit.ly/1LgiVAz)

A Big Test for Mali’s Peace Process…A two month old ceasefire was violated. Can the fledgling peace hold? “Separatists in Mali accused a pro-government militia on Sunday of breaching a two-month-old ceasefire, leading to a fierce exchange of fire, but the militia said the separatists were the aggressors. The two sides presented conflicting versions of Saturday’s clash in northern Mali, a region where the government is trying to damp down separatist tensions while simultaneously fighting Islamist insurgents. The incident took place south of Kidal, a stronghold of the separatist movement which is led by secular Tuareg rebels and known as the Coordination of Azawad Movements, or CMA.” (Reuters http://reut.rs/1IUrRYz)

Scores Killed in New Syria Bombing…”Government airstrikes on a rebel-held suburb of the Syrian capital, Damascus, on Sunday killed more than 80 people and wounded about 200, according to local activists and monitoring organizations. The attacks came one day after the area’s largest rebel group, the Islam Army, announced a new offensive against government forces in a neighboring suburb. While it was unclear if the two attacks were linked, the government of Bashar al-Assad has often bombed communities where the insurgents hold sway, killing civilians in an attempt to undermine the rebel cause.” (NYT http://nyti.ms/1IUsG3C)


At least eight people were seriously injured Sunday when a helicopter from the UN-AN peacekeeping mission in Darfur made an emergency landing in the western Sudanese region, the mission said. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1NlFcwe)

Sierra Leone has ended an Ebola lockdown in the northern village of Massessbe that had kept more than 500 residents in quarantine, as President Ernest Bai Koroma said only two people were still being treated for the virus nationwide. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1TK1zex)

Leaders of 15 southern African countries will gather for an annual summit on today as the region grapples with serious food shortages that have left a record number of people needing aid. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1TK0WS2)

The secretary general of the party of Francois Bozize, the ousted former president of the Central African Republic, was arrested Saturday as he was about to board a plane for Paris, a party source said. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1NlEJKz)

The African Union warned Sunday of potential “catastrophic consequences” for troubled Burundi and the wider region if rivals do not resolve political differences peacefully. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1NlENd8)

Parfait Onanga-Anyanga of Gabon is the new Acting Special Representative for the Central African Republic and Head of the United Nations stabilization mission in the country, known as MINUSCA. (UN News Center http://bit.ly/1IUs3qJ)

A leader of the Trade Union Congress of Swaziland (TUCOSWA) says an international human rights award his group received will spur it to intensify demands for democratic reforms in the Southern African kingdom. (VOA http://bit.ly/1NlFdAk)

From beating women to unleashing dogs on protesters, Angola’s government runs the oil-rich nation with an apartheid-style iron fist, says maverick activist Rafael Marques de Morais. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1NlEKOy)


New United Nations humanitarian chief Stephen O’Brien held talks with Syria’s foreign minister on Sunday during his first trip to Damascus since taking the top aid post. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1NlENtG)

Egypt is looking to add 500,000 new Internet users by the end of 2015 and increase its internet penetration rate to 50 percent from 34 percent by the end of 2016, communication minister Khaled Ali Negm said. (Reuters http://bit.ly/1NlEIGd)


Indian and Pakistani troops traded heavy gunfire and mortar rounds for a seventh straight day Sunday along the highly militarized line of control dividing the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir between the two archrivals, officials said. ( Seattle Times http://bit.ly/1IUrE7P )

Nepalese police arrested more than a hundred protesters on Sunday for trying to enforce a nationwide strike, the latest in a string of protests against the new constitution. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1NlEL4Y)

Sri Lanka deployed thousands of police on Sunday in stepped up security on the eve of a general election after the campaign was hit by sporadic violence that claimed four lives. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1NlEMG2)

The Americas

A top United Nations official who observed Haiti’s elections has condemned the violence and other shortcomings that marred the polling day in the impoverished Caribbean nation. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1TK1wiV)

Tens of thousands of people have taken part in protests across Brazil calling for the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff. (BBC http://bbc.in/1JlecNq)

Stretches of two rivers in New Mexico contaminated by toxic waste earlier this month from an abandoned gold mine were reopened late Saturday to cities whose public drinking water systems are supplied by the rivers’ surface waters, state officials said. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/1TK0V0y)

…and the rest

Though Not A Death Sentence, HIV/AIDS Still Holds A Powerful Stigma (Goats and Soda http://n.pr/1TK0y6e


Photos: African cities are starting to look like Chinese ones. (Quartz http://bit.ly/1IUrUDO)

African Women’s Position On the New Development Agenda (Fahamu http://bit.ly/1TK0p2F)

Though Not A Death Sentence, HIV/AIDS Still Holds A Powerful Stigma (Goats and Soda http://n.pr/1TK0y6e)

Two dogmas of development financing: aid to the Least Developed Countries (Development Policy Centre http://bit.ly/1NbZb1l)

Is development a sector for the 1%? (WhyDev http://bit.ly/1NbZfhq)

Is Kazakhstan’s Olympic Loss A Win for Human Rights? (UN Dispatch http://bit.ly/1NlO7O5)

Can a tool to map aid budgets be used to keep tabs on the SDGs? (Devex http://bit.ly/1TKbyk1)

How developing countries are paying a high price for the global mineral boom (The Observer http://bit.ly/1JlhHDN)

Civil society and development: moving from de Tocqueville to Gramsci (Development Policy Centre http://bit.ly/1JlhIr3)

Admitting failure, proposing change (How Matters http://bit.ly/1JlhGjb)