Beware La Nina

Another coming climate phenomenon may have catastrophic consequences in some vulnerable communities. “Now that the 2015-2016 El Niño –one of the strongest on record– has subsided, La Niña – El Niño’s ‘counterpart’– could strike soon, further exacerbating a severe humanitarian crisis that is affecting millions of people in the most vulnerable communities in tens of countries worldwide, especially in Africa and Asia Pacific. El Niño is the term used to describe the warming of the central to eastern tropical Pacific that occurs, on average, every three to seven years. It raises sea surface temperatures and impacts weather systems around the globe so that some places receive more rain while others receive none at all, often in a reversal of their usual weather pattern. La Niña is the opposite weather phenomena—it lowers sea surface temperature producing a counter impact and anyway bringing more catastrophes with heavy rains in areas affected by El Niño draughts and more of these in flooded regions. (IPS

Zika in Utah, and no one knows how…On Monday, the Utah Department of Health reported that a new case had been diagnosed that did not appear to have been contracted through the two known sources of transmission: a mosquito bite or sexual contact.The patient, who has since fully recovered, was a “family contact” who helped care for an older man who had become infected with the virus after traveling abroad. (NYT

Big UN SDG meeting underway…It’s a ministerial-level meeting on the implementation of the SGDs…”The forum – convened under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) – is part of a 2016 high-level segment being held from 18 to 22 July. Bringing together representatives from UN Member States, civil society actors, academia and the private sector, it represents the culmination of ECOSOC’s 2016 cycle and addresses the Council’s overall annual theme, “Implementing the post-2015 development agenda: moving from commitments to results.” (UN News Center )

Quote of the Day: “For a long time our friends have been asking us to return to them so that Morocco can take up its natural place within its institutional family. The moment has now come.”  — King Mohammed VI of Morocco, on his decision to rejoin the African Union after 32 years.  (Al Jazeera

Stat of the Day: The six wealthiest countries – which make up more than half the global economy – host less than nine percent of the world’s refugees. (Oxfam


Nearly a quarter of a million children are severely malnourished in Borno state, northeast Nigeria, and face a high risk of death, UNICEF said today, as the scale of the humanitarian crisis caused by the Boko Haram emergency continues to unfold. (UNICEF Press Release. No link yet, but check   

Dr Jill Biden is in Malawi as part of her three-country visit to Africa to engage government and civil society partners on issues related to economic empowerment and educational opportunities for women and girls, and food security. (From White House pool report)

Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni said he was opposed to a U.N. plan to impose an arms embargo on his neighbour South Sudan, saying it would weaken its army just as the country was trying to contain a resurgence of violence. (The Standard

Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday said he was concerned about delays in prosecuting former public officials for corruption, warning it could harm his high-profile stance on graft. (AFP

Eleven Cameroonians, including the mayor of the northern town of Ladgo, have been freed from captivity after they were seized by a rebel group from the Central African Republic more than a year ago. (VOA


The United States expects to raise about $2 billion from donor nations for Iraq’s needs during a pledging conference in Washington this week, a senior State Department official said on Monday. (Reuters

Civilians in rebel-held parts of Syria’s Aleppo expressed fears Monday of a lengthy government siege, as food supplies dwindled after regime troops seized the only road into the city’s east. (AFP

Egypt’s doctors union has referred four members to a disciplinary court for taking part in the army’s development of a widely mocked device said to cure AIDS and hepatitis C. (AP


A lone gunman with Islamist links killed at least three policemen and two civilians in Kazakhstan’s financial capital Almaty on Monday, senior security officials said, the second such attack in less than two months. (Reuters )

Representatives of ethnic minorities who have been battling Myanmar’s government for decades said Monday their meeting with the country’s de facto leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, was a good beginning but that the peace process remains an uphill task. (AP

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said human rights are not a concern in his war on drugs, vowing to ignore due process and comparing himself to former Ugandan dictator Idi Amin. (AFP

An Indian student has been gang raped by the same group of men who raped her three years ago, an officer said Monday. (VOA

Indonesia on Monday began re-vaccinating nearly 200 children who received fake versions of imported inoculations from a drug-counterfeiting ring broken up last month after operating for more than a decade. (Reuters

Zahra Yaganah was married off to a violent man at 13. Now an author, her book is shining a light on abuse in Afghanistan. (Guardian

The Americas

A World Bank panel rejected a lawsuit filed against Peru which charged the nation with failing to clean up pollution tied to a smelter, the government said on Monday, but the company bringing the suit pledged to refile it immediately. (Reuters

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden on Monday condemned the slaying of three police officers in Louisiana, dubbing the shootings a “despicable act.” (AP

…and the rest

Turkey’s justice minister says that some 6,000 people have been detained following a failed coup attempt. (NPR )

WikiLeaks said on Monday it was planning to release documents on Turkey’s political power structure after a failed coup attempt over the weekend. (Reuters

Ban Ki-moon’s climate change envoy has accused the UK and Germany of backtracking on the spirit of the Paris climate deal by financing the fossil fuel industry through subsidies. (Guardain

Agriculture is the biggest driver of deforestation globally fueled by a growing demand for food, yet it is possible to feed the world without cutting forests, the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization said on Monday. (Reuters

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party said on Monday the repose to a failed coup attempt must be conducted within the rule of law and that the plotters and those who helped them must be tried in the courts. (Reuters


Priscilla Clapp spent 30 years in the foreign service. Then she wrote one of the most insightful books about US foreign policy (Global Dispatches podcast

A letter to an 11-year-old Aids activist who shamed South Africa’s president (Guardian

Fast-track Development Threatens to Leave Indigenous Peoples Behind (IPS

Will Paul Romer get the World Bank out of the randomista business and into Charter Cities? (Chris Blattman

We Subsidize Crops We Should Eat Less Of, Does This Fatten Us Up? (NPR

How does South Sudan move forward? (IRIN

When Should We Put Anticorruption Agencies in the Constitution? (Global Anticorruption Blog

Murder of three deaf women in Haiti must be a starting point for change (Guardian

Step by step: The road to ending the AIDS epidemic (Devex