Measles Death in Germany

A stark reminder to western audiences that measles is, in fact, deadly. “A toddler has died of measles in the German capital, health authorities said Monday, amid the country’s worst outbreak in years and an intense debate about steps to boost vaccinations. The 18-month-old boy died on February 18, the first known fatality among more than 570 recorded measles cases since October in the German capital, a Berlin health department official told AFP. The resurgence of the preventable disease in Germany, as well as in parts of the United States, coincides with a movement among some parents to refuse to vaccinate their children. (AFP

What Can Llamas Teach us About AIDS?...More than just a cute andean animal, Llamas appear to be immune to AIDS and HIV. The discovery, experts say, just might lead to a vaccine against the deadly virus or a treatment for those already infected. (GlobalPost

Quote of the Day: “I don’t know exactly what the concrete actions are that I am being accused of.” Former first lady of Cote D’Ivoire during her inaugural hearing at the International Criminal Court.  (BBC


Kenya’s constitutional court on Monday threw out eight sections of an anti-terrorism law passed at the end of last year, including limits on the media and a cap on the number of refugees allowed in the country, ruling them unconstitutional. (Reuters

The continuing violations of a South Sudan truce signed earlier this month are vexing mediators, an Ethiopian official said Monday as peace talks resumed on Monday amid reports of sporadic violence in the country. (AP

More than 20 children have been quarantined at a British-run orphanage in Sierra Leone after one of its staff was diagnosed with Ebola. (AFP

France will support a bid by the African Union to win the backing of the U.N. Security Council for its five-nation force fighting Islamist militant group Boko Haram, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Sunday. (Reuters

A Sudanese judge Monday refused to release on bail two opposition figures detained since December for signing an alliance of anti-government groups, after a prosecutor demanded six charges against them. (AFP

President Edgar Lungu said on Monday his government would not allow mining jobs to be lost at Barrick Gold’s Zambian copper mine after the company said it plans to close the business due to high royalties. (Reuters

The African Union on Monday urged the Congolese government to accept help from U.N. forces to defeat rebels in the country’s east, after a row over human rights derailed plans for joint operations. (Reuters

It is the early hours of the morning and bars in the Liberian capital are packed as revellers drink, sing and rejoice in their first night of freedom with the Ebola curfew lifted. (AFP

The raging Boko Haram insurgency in northeast Nigeria has hit the region’s fishing industry, causing shortages and driving up prices, union leaders say. (AFP

Ivory Coast’s former first lady Simone Gbagbo on Monday questioned the charges against her as she appeared in court for the first time accused of undermining state security. (AFP

A Muslim cleric in Guinea who conducted the funeral rites of a suspected Ebola victim was charged Monday with assaulting an outreach worker who came to question him over the ceremony, a judicial source said. (AFP

Leaders of the three west African countries worst affected by Ebola will meet donors and partners in March to discuss how to regenerate their economies. (Guardian


An Egyptian court sentenced prominent activist Alaa Abdel Fattah to five years in jail on Monday for violating a law that seeks to curtail demonstrations, legislation branded repressive by rights groups. (Reuters

Libya’s elected parliament voted on Monday to suspend its participation in a U.N.-sponsored dialogue between Libya’s rival conflict parties, vying for control of the oil producer, lawmakers said. (Reuters

The father of Kayla Mueller, the American woman killed after spending months in captivity under Islamic State militants, says the U.S. government “put policy in front of” American lives. (AP

A Lebanese satirist appeared before a prosecutor in Beirut on Monday, after the country’s top Sunni religious authority filed a judicial complaint against him for allegedly defaming Islam. (AP


China and India will train government officials in the Asia-Pacific region on how to incorporate disaster management into national planning and finance measures. (IPS

The Americas

The United States is naming its first international envoy for gay rights. The State Department says Randy Berry will be its special envoy to promote human rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals. (AP

…and the rest

Britain has failed to address the plight of millions of children who are caught up in war, and lacks “a tangible, or indeed any kind of strategy” to help them, a parliamentary report said. (TRF

U.N. human rights experts on Monday urged Spain’s Senate to reject two proposed bills, saying they threaten fundamental rights and freedoms. (AP


The IR theorist Stephen Walt is Mark’s podcast guest this week. (Global Dispatches Podcast

No longer at ease: Tackling the trauma of Boko Haram (IRIN

The voice of South Sudan’s women must be heard to give peace a chance |(The Guardian

Discrimination by Law (Inter Press Service

Real World Development Indicators, version 2.0 (Chris Blattman

Is Papua New Guinea heading for a crisis? (Devpolicy Blog

Five Ways to Engage the Private Sector in Countering Violent Extremism (Development Channel

Analysis: Economic Growth Is Not Enough (Inter Press Service

Remember Ebola’s orphans, but don’t forget all the other affected children (Africa Can End Poverty

Mexico’s Corrupt Mayors: Who Gets Punished at the Ballot Box, and Why (The Global Anticorruption Blog

Why Does Female Genital Cutting Persist in West Africa? (Marc Bellemare