A Wave of New Violence in Northern Nigeria

As many as 2,000 people may have been killed last week in what Amnesty has described as the single deadliest attack ever pulled off by Boko Haram. Then, on Saturday a 10 year old girl was used as a suicide bomber in an attack on a market that killed at least 19 people. In another attack, on Sunday, two female suicide bombers killed at least 4 people. The situation is getting as dire as ever in the run up to big elections in Nigeria later this year.  (BBC http://bbc.in/1y3Khnp)

Haiti, 5 Years On

NBC news has a searing investigation into what has become of the $13 billion pledged in the aftermath of the big earthquake, the anniversary of which is 5 years ago today. “The United Nations said that in total $13.34 billion has been earmarked for the crisis through 2020, though two years after the quake, less than half of that amount had actually been released, according to U.N. documents. The U.S. government has allocated $4 billion; $3 billion has already been spent, and the rest is dedicated to longer-term projects. Some global development analysts say that the spending structure — with the vast majority of money being funneled through foreign contractors instead of the Haitian government or local outfits — has built-in inefficiencies, compounded by a lack of accountability and transparency.” (NBC http://nbcnews.to/1y3L5sw)

Humanity Affirming Quote of the Day: ““I address myself now to all the racists, Islamophobes and antisemites. One must not confuse extremists with Muslims. Mad people have neither colour or religion. I want to make another point: don’t tar everybody with the same brush, don’t burn mosques – or synagogues. You are attacking people. It won’t bring our dead back and it won’t appease the families.” — Malek Merabet, whose brother Ahmed was a policeman killed in the Charlie Hebdo attack. (Guardian http://bit.ly/1y3LKtP)


Contaminated traditional beer has killed 56 people in Mozambique, health authorities in the southern African country said on Sunday. (AP http://yhoo.it/1IeH0CU)

Mali’s President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita has approved a new government, the third since he took power less than two years ago, before the launch of new peace talks this month with separatists in the north of the country. (Reuters http://bit.ly/1AF3t8V)

A remote-controlled bomb hit a vehicle in a troop convoy in the southern Somali port city of Kismayu, killing at least three soldiers, police and residents said on Sunday. (Reuters http://bit.ly/1AF3Ccn)

The United Nations Congo force is militarily prepared to strike against Rwandan rebel positions if given orders to do so by Congo’s president, a U.N. official said. (AP http://yhoo.it/1IeHcC8)

Medicins Sans Frontiers has opened the first care center in the current Ebola epidemic for pregnant women, whose survival rate from the virus is virtually zero, the charity said on Saturday. (Reuters http://bit.ly/1BQo4su)

South Africa’s capacity to generate electricity is shrinking due to ageing power plants, latest statistics show, and the continent’s most developed economy could face rolling blackouts for years to come. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1AMiSqx)

Maasai pastoralists have found an innovative way to generate biogas: using animal blood and waste from the Keekonyokie slaughterhouse. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/1AMiXKO)


Libya’s factions have agreed to a new round of U.N.-backed negotiations to attempt to end the conflict destabilizing the North African country three years after Muammar Gaddafi was toppled in a civil war. (Reuters http://bit.ly/1AF3NVa)

Human Rights Watch on Sunday urged the Yemeni government to “credibly” investigate the killing of a prominent southern separatist while he was being arrested during a protest. (AFP http://yhoo.it/1AMizMd)


Sri Lanka’s new government will investigate an alleged attempt by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa to stage a coup to try to stay in power when results showed he was losing last week’s election, a spokesman for the country’s new leader said Sunday. (AP http://yhoo.it/1IeGIfs)

The Americas

Protesters burned tires and threw rocks and glass bottles at riot police during another anti-government demonstration in Haiti’s capital Saturday amid a bitter political stalemate over long-delayed elections. (AP http://yhoo.it/1IeGuFa)

Colombia’s largest rebel group, the Farc, says the unilateral truce it declared last month is being threatened by the army’s continuing attacks. (BBC http://bbc.in/1DyxFWP)

New clashes between vigilante groups and government forces in Mexico’s violent western state of Michoacan are calling into question the strategy of a federal commissioner appointed a year ago to restore order. (AP http://yhoo.it/14J72QN)

Two new key officials in Brazil’s government have sparked renewed fears for the Amazon — and the impact further deforestation there could have on the planet. (GlobalPost http://bit.ly/1AMj60J)


Obnoxious freedom: Editorial cartoonist David Horsey on the Charlie Hebdo murders (Humanosphere http://bit.ly/1B63gx2)

This Child Soldier Grew Up to Become a Hardened War Criminal. Should He Go to Jail? (UN Dispatch http://bit.ly/1BW9Qo7)

Bill Gates Raises A Glass To (And Of) Water Made From Poop (NPR http://n.pr/1BQnqev)

Death Becomes Disturbingly Routine: The Diary Of An Ebola Doctor (NPR http://n.pr/1yVnSs6)

A Forecast of Global Democratization Trends Through 2025 (Dart-Throwing Chimp http://bit.ly/1B62AHS)

The Future of the UN Development System (Roving Bandit http://bit.ly/1B62IXP)

This Year Today: What Kim & Kanye mean for development (WhyDev http://bit.ly/1C4Letp)

Manufacturing a compliant Chinese generation, one textbook at a time (Chris Blattman http://bit.ly/1C4Lo3X)

Why gay rights is a development issue in Africa, and aid agencies should speak up (From Poverty to Power http://bit.ly/1B633d4)

Corruption in Turkey Poised to Worsen (The Global Anticorruption Blog http://bit.ly/1C4Lusg)