How Much Money is in the UN’s Ebola Trust Fund?

$100,000. That’s it. There are millions in pledges. But so far, only $100,000 has actually been committed to a fund intended enable UN agencies to rapidly respond to an evolving crisis. “As of Thursday, $365 million had been committed by at least 28 countries, the African Union, the European Union, the World Bank, the African Development Bank and several foundations and corporations, according to U.N. records. But nearly all that money was donated directly to U.N. agencies and nonprofits working on the ground in the three worst affected countries of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, with just $100,000 paid into the fund by Colombia, the records show…Dr. David Nabarro, who is heading the U.N. response to the Ebola crisis, told Reuters the trust fund was intended to offer “flexibility in responding to a crisis which every day brings new challenges; it allows the areas of greatest need to be identified and funds to be directed accordingly.” (Reuters

Ebola misinformation abounds… A majority of Americans believe the Ebola virus can be spread by sneezing or coughing and more than a third fear that they or someone in their immediate family may contract the deadly disease in the next year, according to a Harvard University poll. (Reuters

Turkey Snubbed...In a surprising twist and what counts for drama at the United Nations, Turkey lost its bid for a Security Council seat on Thursday. Turkey was competing with Spain and New Zealand for two of the non-permanent seats on the Security Council and it lost to spain after three rounds of voting. (UN Dispatch


The global famine warning system is predicting a major food crisis if the Ebola outbreak continues to grow exponentially over the coming months, and the United Nations still hasn’t reached over 750,000 people in need of food in West Africa as prices spiral and farms are abandoned. (AP

A total of 4,493 people have died from the world’s worst Ebola outbreak on record, and the situation in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone is deteriorating, the WHO said. (Reuters

The deadly Ebola virus has infected two people in what was the last untouched district in Sierra Leone, the government said Thursday, a setback in efforts to stop the spread of the disease in one of the hardest-hit countries. (AP


Three Ethiopian peacekeepers were killed Thursday in an attack in Sudan’s troubled Darfur region, the joint UN-African Union mission said, the latest deaths in increasingly dangerous peace operations in Africa. (AFP

A South Sudanese national who works for the United Nations was “kidnapped” Thursday in Malakal by men in uniform, the head of an association that represents locals who work with the United Nations said. (VOA

Niger has removed former President Mamadou Tandja’s legal immunity, his lawyer confirmed on Thursday, as it hunts for $780 million that has gone missing. (Reuters

At least 27 people were killed in overnight attacks on villages near the eastern Congolese town of Beni, a local official said on Thursday. (Reuters

International rights groups urged South Sudan President Salva Kiir not to sign the national security bill that was passed last week by parliament, saying it would give security forces excessive powers, and violates international and South Sudanese law. (VOA

State repression is on the rise in Uganda, according to the rights group Amnesty International, as it documents legislation that has been enacted during the past year and half.  Analysts say fundamental human rights are being violated. (VOA

Uganda’s HIV/AIDS control efforts have been undermined by a lack of consensus and clarity over which people constitute Key Populations to be targeted in various prevention, care and treatment efforts, say experts. (IRIN


A crackdown on dissent and restrictions on democratic freedoms is forcing the Carter center to close operations in Egypt. (AFP

Morocco’s government says a father has been detained as he tried to take his two small daughters to join the Islamic State group. (AP

Libya’s Red Crescent called on Thursday for a ceasefire in the eastern city of Benghazi to allow the evacuation of families trapped by street fighting between Islamist militants and pro-government forces supported by local youths. (Reuters

Shocking photographs purporting to show Syrian torture victims are on display at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC. (VOA

Saudi Arabia is seeing “sporadic” cases of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus, which has killed 324 people in the country, the health ministry said Thursday. (AFP

The International Committee of the Red Cross said on Thursday it had delivered its first medical supplies in a year to Palestinian refugees living in a camp in the Damascus suburb of Yarmouk in Syria. (Reuters

Ground fighting alone has killed more than 600 combatants since Islamic State group jihadists launched an offensive on the Syrian Kurdish enclave of Kobane a month ago, a monitoring group said Thursday. (AFP


Rescue teams in Nepal’s Himalayas continued searching for dozens of missing hikers Thursday, after the previous day’s heavy snow and avalanches killed at least 20 people. (VOA

Hundreds of Malaysian lawyers on October 16 marched towards the Malaysian parliament house demanding the government honor its two-year-old pledge to repeal the Sedition Act of 1948. (Reuters

A Myanmar court sentenced a media owner, publisher and three journalists to two years in prison Thursday in the latest ruling to raise concerns about press freedoms in the country emerging from military rule. (AP

The Americas

Despite public support for female parliamentary representation in Uruguay, some MPs have tried to undermine measures to tackle inequality. (Guardian

The Sao Paulo state water utility on Thursday assured customers that Brazil’s largest city won’t run out of water, even though a main reservoir is nearly dry. (AP

New laws and changing attitudes mean disabled persons in the Caribbean are making important gains. (AP


Some common sense on Ebola…from Fox News? (Humanosphere

The American Media Is in Full Panic Mode Over Ebola — And It’s Only Making Things Worse (Mic

Ebola hysteria is going viral. Don’t fall for these 5 myths (GlobalPost

Ebola, Economics and Equality in Africa (African Arguments

What Are Mozambique’s Prospects for Peace? (SAIIA

Do Journalists Use Double Standards When Reporting Vulnerable Subjects Far From ‘Home’? (African Arguments

Why Inequality Matters (Bill Gates

Ebola’s Other Contagious Threat: Hysteria (NY Times

Paul Farmer Diary: Ebola (London Review of Books