Top of the Morning: Moving to a Peacekeeping Mission in Mali; Aid Spending in OECD Countries Down for Second Year in a Row

Top stories from DAWNS Digest

Get Ready for a UN Peacekeeping Mission in Mali

The government of Mali, ECOWAS, and the United States are all pressing for a robust UN peacekeeping mission to replace the French-led international force. Chances are the French will stay in the country to conduct counter-terrorism operations, though not as part of the peacekeeping mission. The plan around which the UN is coalescing would transition the 7,000 AFISMA troops into an 11,500-strong UN peacekeeping force of which there will also be a parallel counter-terrorism contingent. The key question is when will the force deploy. Right now, the US does not think the conditions are just right. (Voice of America

Aid Spending in OECD Countries Down for Second Year in a Row

Yet more evidence that austerity measures in donor countries are having a big impact on foreign aid. “Spending on development aid by Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development countries fell by 4% in real terms last year, following a 2% reduction in 2011. Figures published today reveal that the 25 members of the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee provided a total of $125.7 bn in net Overseas Development Assistance in 2012 – equivalent to 0.29% of their combined gross national income. This compares with $133.7 bn in 2011, equivalent to 0.31% of their GNI. Since a peak in 2010, ODA has now fallen by 6% in real terms, with last year showing the biggest drop since 1997.” (Public Finance International