Hottest. Year. Ever

2015 will almost certainly break all records. “The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the American agency that tracks worldwide temperatures, announced Wednesday that last month had been the hottest September on record, and in fact took the biggest leap above the previous September that any month has displayed since 1880, when tracking began at a global scale. The agency also announced that the January-to-September period had been the hottest such span on the books. The extreme heat and related climate disturbances mean that delegates to a global climate conference scheduled for Paris in early December will almost certainly be convening as weather-related disasters are unfolding around the world, putting them under greater political pressure to reach an ambitious deal to limit future emissions and slow the temperature increase.”  (NYT )

Student Protests Escalate in South Africa…South African students took their fight against tuition fee increases to the country’s parliament,  one week after the #Feesmustfall protests began at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg and spread to 15 other universities across the country…On a day of protest that called for a #NationalShutDown on social media, students forced their way through the gates of parliament before being driven back by police firing tear gas and stun grenades.” (Quartz

Another EU refugee crisis summit…The European Union’s executive on Wednesday announced an extraordinary mini-summit of EU and Balkan leaders this coming Sunday to deal with the migrant crisis. (AP

UN Report of the Day…Women around the world are living longer, are better educated and are marrying later than has been the case over the past 20 years, but millions remain illiterate and many have been victims of domestic violence, a U.N. report said. (VOA



Security forces in Congo Republic’s capital fired warning shots and teargas to disperse hundreds of protesters marching against a referendum they say is a ploy to extend the president’s grip on power, a day after police killed four opposition supporters. (Reuters

Malian president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita is seeking political and financial support for the country’s peace process during a two-day state visit to France. (Reuters

The World Food Program is warning that hundreds of thousands of people in Mauritania are going hungry and malnutrition rates among young children are rising at an alarming rate. The agency says it urgently needs $11 million to assist the country. (VOA

The UN Security Council said it was ready to impose a fresh round of sanctions to punish those responsible for an upsurge of violence in the Central African Republic. (AFP

A stalled scheme to make Tanzania east Africa’s premier sugar producer has polarised opinion about using large-scale agriculture to achieve food security. (Guardian

A Scottish nurse who contracted and initially recovered from Ebola, but then suffered a relapse, has meningitis caused by the virus in her brain, doctors treating her said on Wednesday. (Reuters

Thousands of female farmers in Tanzania, Malawi and Uganda could escape a life of poverty if better policies were adopted to bridge a yawning gap in agricultural productivity between women and men, according to a World Bank and United Nations report. (Reuters



Turnout was so low in the first round of Egypt’s parliamentary elections, that satirist Bassem Youssef derided it as an ingenious strategy to show the world Egypt had rid itself of its notorious overcrowding. (Reuters

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon briefed the Security Council on Wednesday on his trip to the Middle East where he is seeking to defuse weeks of violence, diplomats said. (AP


The death toll from the tropical storm that battered the Philippines’ main island over the weekend climbed to at least 39, officials said Wednesday. (AP

A baby and a toddler were killed in a house fire allegedly set by their family’s upper caste neighbors, and hundreds of angry residents placed the children’s bodies on a key highway near the Indian capital to demand the attackers be arrested. (AP

Loggers in China’s southwest are destroying sanctuaries home to endangered giant pandas, environmental group Greenpeace said in a report on Wednesday, defying efforts by conservationists and tougher forestry regulations. (Reuters

Amnesty International is urging Southeast Asian nations to avoid a repeat of the refugee-boat crisis that left thousands stranded at sea earlier this year, saying in a new report that human traffickers kept asylum-seekers in “hellish” conditions, beat them severely and even killed them if families failed to pay ransoms. (AP

The Americas

Brazil is pulling out of a South American mission to observe crucial legislative elections in Venezuela over what it says a lack of guarantees by the socialist government and its veto of the choice to head the delegation. (AP

A mob beat, killed and burned two pollsters who were conducting a survey in a small town southeast of Mexico City, authorities said. (AP

Mexico has agreed to relaunch its investigation into last year’s disappearance of 43 teachers’ college students. (AP

Opposition lawyers filed a new petition to Congress for the impeachment of Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff on Wednesday, seeking to unseat the unpopular leftist leader for allegedly continuing to doctor government accounts into her second term. (Reuters

Peru’s president fired the public prosecutor who oversaw money-laundering investigations after she refused to remain silent in a case involving the country’s first lady. (AP

Rock the vote…Hip-hop star Wyclef Jean has released a song calling on Haitian voters to cast ballots for one presidential candidate, while the outgoing president’s musician son hastily issued his own track touting his father’s hand-picked successor. (AP

…and the rest

About 3,500 migrants spent the night camped out in freezing cold at the Berkasovo-Bapska border crossing between Serbia and Croatia after the Croatian government closed the gates to limit the number of people entering the country. (Reuters

More than 100 people landed at a British airbase on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus in unusual circumstances this morning, also representing the first time in the migrant crisis that refugees have landed directly on UK sovereign soil. (Vice

Latest on U.N. bribery scandal…Federal prosecutors beefed up charges in a bribery conspiracy case that has ensnared a former president of the U.N. General Assembly, a Dominican Republic diplomat and a Chinese billionaire. (AP

The search for the next secretary-general of the United Nations should give special attention to women vying for the top job, the president of the UN General Assembly said. (AFP

Freezing temperatures and burning tents heightened the misery of thousands of people pushing their way through Europe on Wednesday, hoping to find refuge at the end of their arduous treks. (AP

The head of the International Organization for Migration says leaders must prepare the world for more diversity as aging societies in the developed world and endemic youth unemployment in the developing world drive demographic trends. (AP


Non, merci! Why refugees avoid France (IRIN

Why poo transplants are nothing to be sniffed at (The Conversation

Yes, Cervix Selfies Are Happening in Kenya—For a Good Cause (TakePart

The student uprisings in South Africa and wider political-economic change (Africa is a Country

No, Deaton’s Nobel prize win isn’t a victory for aid sceptics (Bond

Democratizing the eradication of poverty (Devex

The Father of Millions (WSJ

The disruptive potential of feedback (Nonprofit Chronicles

The Myth of Welfare’s Corrupting Influence on the Poor (NY Times

Innovation, technology and the SDGs (Wait…What?

When Aid is Crowdsourced, Who Gets the Money? (Tiny Spark