Syria map

A map of Syria from world factbook

More Evidence of ISIS’ Genocidal Intent

An important piece of journalism from the AP. “In exclusive interviews, photos and research, The Associated Press has documented and mapped 72 of the mass graves, the most comprehensive survey so far, with many more expected to be uncovered as the Islamic State group’s territory shrinks. In Syria, AP has obtained locations for 17 mass graves, including one with the bodies of hundreds of members of a single tribe all but exterminated when IS extremists took over their region. For at least 16 of the Iraqi graves, most in territory too dangerous to excavate, officials do not even guess the number of dead. In others, the estimates are based on memories of traumatized survivors, Islamic State propaganda and what can be gleaned from a cursory look at the earth. Still, even the known numbers of victims buried are staggering — from 5,200 to more than 15,000. Sinjar mountain is dotted with mass graves, some in territory clawed back from IS after the group’s onslaught against the Yazidi minority in August 2014; others in the deadly no man’s land that has yet to be secured.” (AP

Thousands Rescued At Sea. Again…”Rescuers saved 3,000 migrants in the waters off Libya on Tuesday as they tried desperately to reach Europe, a day after a record 6,500 people were rescued in the Mediterranean…After several weeks of relative calm in the stretch of Mediterranean between Italy and Libya, more than 1,100 people were rescued on Sunday and another 6,500 on Monday.Dramatic images distributed by the Italian coastguard showed children among the survivors crammed onto an old fishing boat… The total number of arrivals in Italy this year now stands at 112,500, according to the UN’s refugee agency and the coastguard, slightly below the 116,000 recorded by the same point in 2015. (AFP

Zuckerberg Makes his first trip to Sub-Saharan Africa…The Facebook founder visited Sub-Saharan Africa for the first time on Tuesday, touching down in Lagos, Nigeria. He met with local businesses and developers in an effort to understand how Facebook could “better support tech development and entrepreneurship across Africa,” the company said in a statement. His visit included a trip to a Yaba, known as the Silicon Valley of Nigeria, where he toured a coding camp for kids and met with about 50 local startup founders and developers at CcHub, a local innovation center. (CNN )


People stockpiled food, police manned major crossroads and soldiers were deployed at petrol stations and banks on Tuesday as Gabon braced for results from an election that will decide the fate of Ali Bongo and his family’s 50-year grip on power. (Reuters

One hundred thirty men and boys remain missing in Cameroon nearly two years after a government crackdown on suspected members of the Nigeria-based Boko Haram extremists, Amnesty International said Tuesday, calling on the government to provide answers. (AP

A Nigerian militant group, which has claimed responsibility for a series of attacks on oil and gas facilities in the southern Niger Delta energy hub in the last few months, said on Monday that it had halted hostilities. (Reuters

Kenya is on its way to breaking the devastating cycle of drought, poverty and hunger over the next decade, a leading scientist said as he was named winner of a prestigious award. (Reuters

Children who escaped Boko Haram’s Islamic insurgency now are dying of starvation in refugee camps in northeastern Nigeria’s largest city as the government investigates the theft of food aid by officials. (AP

South Africa’s recovery from its worst drought in over century could be stalled as anticipated rain relief from a La Nina weather system remains uncertain, the South African Weather Service said on Monday.  (Reuters



The United Nations is under increasing pressure to set up an independent inquiry into its Syria aid programme after a Guardian investigation found contracts worth tens of millions of dollars have been awarded to people closely associated with the president, Bashar al-Assad. (Guardian

Palestinian authorities are silencing dissent by cracking down on free speech and abusing local journalists and activists critical of their policies, a leading international human rights group said Tuesday. (AP

In a series of 40 rescue missions launched off the northern coast of Libya, Italian Coast Guard personnel and several partner agencies saved around 6,500 migrants said to be traveling from Somalia and Eritrea, according to the coast guard. (VOA

Iraqi militias are recruiting children from camps for civilians displaced by conflict ahead of the long-awaited operation to retake militant-held Mosul, according to a report from Human Rights Watch Tuesday. (AP

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office on Tuesday called criticism of Israeli settlement building “absurd” after a UN envoy strongly hit out at his government over the issue. (AFP

Rubbish is again accumulating on some Beirut streets after protesters blocked access to a dump, raising fears that last summer’s garbage crisis, which provoked unprecedented street protests, could return. (VOA

The U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator says a “minimum” of 10,000 people have been killed and wounded in Yemen’s conflict. (AP

Libya has shipped the last of its chemical weapons stocks out of the country, officials said Tuesday, under a UN-backed plan to ensure the arsenal could not fall into the wrong hands. (AFP


Sri Lanka is planning to begin testing its first web-based disaster damage and loss reporting system by the end of the year, authorities say. (TRF

Bangladesh’s top court on Tuesday rejected a final appeal by the leader of an Islamist party against a death sentence for atrocities committed during the 1971 war of independence, lawyers said, meaning he could be hanged at any time. (Reuters

Tea estates in southern India are hiring temporary workers during peak plucking season and denying these laborers basic rights as required by law, said a report released on Tuesday. (Reuters

The United States and India pledged on Tuesday to deepen security and commercial ties at the start of an annual U.S.-India strategic dialogue in which tension with Pakistan over the disputed Kashmir region will also be discussed. (Reuters

Fresh fighting between ethnic minority rebels and Myanmar’s military is overshadowing an upcoming peace conference led by Aung San Suu Kyi’s new civilian government, people involved in the talks said Tuesday. (AFP

Indonesia’s Disaster Agency said it is confident the country’s forest fires and haze of toxic smoke they send over Southeast Asia are unlikely to reach levels seen in 2015 because of favorable weather conditions and a quicker emergency response. (VOA

A prominent anti-Muslim group of Buddhist nationalists in Myanmar is criticizing former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan on social media, and accidentally taking actor Morgan Freeman down with him. (AP

The Americas

Former Haitian president Jean-Bertrand Aristide made a rare public appearance to support his party’s presidential candidate. (AFP

The deadly collapse of a tailings dam last November at the Samarco mine, owned by Vale SA and BHP Billiton, was caused by drainage and design flaws, a report into Brazil’s worst-ever environmental disaster showed on Monday. (Reuters

Venezuela on Tuesday was set to expel a crew of Al Jazeera journalists who were intending to cover an opposition march against President Nicolas Maduro, the country’s union of journalists said. (AFP

…and the rest

The U.N health agency says three common infections transmitted by sex are increasingly resisting antibiotics, and is calling on doctors and patients to make sure the right drugs and doses are used. (AP

The UN on Tuesday welcomed a decision by France’s highest administrative court to suspend a controversial ban on burkini swimwear, warning that the ban had fuelled religious intolerance and stigmatisation. (AFP


When The U.S. Backs Gay And Lesbian Rights In Africa, Is There A Backlash? (NPR

Analysis: Where next for S.Sudan and rebel chief Machar? (AFP

Secret aid worker: I’d rather help people abroad than my own community (Guardian

Brazil impeachment: Dilma Rousseff’s last stand? (BBC News

Will These African Languages be Lost forever? (UN Dispatch

Communicating development in a post-factual world: How to win against the Daily Mail (Aidnography

My Fellow Americans: Please Never, Ever Say (or Imply) That the United States Is the Only Country that Tries To Do Something About Corruption (Global Anticorruption Blog

Why Australia should support negotiations for a nuclear weapon ban (The Intrepreter