Author Archives: Humanosphere

Still little known about Melinda Gates’ outside project Pivotal Ventures

More than a year ago, Melinda Gates quietly created an independent, non-profit organization called Pivotal Ventures. Gates never really explained its purpose other than to say she was creating it to pursue ‘outside projects’ focused on women’s issues. A spokesperson for the still somewhat mysterious organization says an announcement will be made soon, perhaps finally

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News in the Humanosphere: Child suicide bomber kills more than 50 in Turkey, says President

A suicide bomber aged between 12 and 14 carried out the attack on a wedding party in the Turkish city of Gaziantep on Saturday that killed at least 51 people, the president said. The attack was the deadliest in a series of bombings in Turkey this year, and President Tayyip Erdogan said Islamic State was

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U.S.-backed bombings force Doctors Without Borders to evacuate northern Yemen

Doctors Without Borders announced on Thursday that it was evacuating staff from six hospitals in northern Yemen. The medical aid group said that it is not confident its staff and facilities would be safe from future attacks after the bombing of a hospital it supports on Monday. The sudden pull out of medical professionals from

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In Japan, Kurdish asylum seekers remain in legal limbo

Japan’s deep reluctance to take in asylum seekers has essentially trapped Kurds and other refugees in a state of legal limbo. According to a recent story by the New York Times, more than 1,300 ethnic Kurds are settled in cities around Tokyo, and nearly all of them are asylum seekers on “provisional release” – in other

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Opponents to Trans-Pacific Partnership use concerts, teach-ins to show downside of deal

Opponents of the Trans-Pacific Partnership continue to have concerns that not enough people are paying attention to a trade deal they think will be bad for workers, the environment and the global poor. The Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, aims to deepen economic ties among 12 nations – the U.S., Japan, Malaysia and Canada among them

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News in the Humanosphere: Floods in Sudan force people from homes, cut off aid

Aid workers are struggling to get hundreds of tons of aid to people made homeless by widespread flooding in Sudan after torrential rains severed a highway and other roads. Trucks and vehicles loaded with relief supplies and construction materials were stranded in the eastern state of Kasala as authorities battled to repair damaged roads, an

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European migrant deal may be starting to fall apart

The deal between the European Union and Turkey that has helped to slow down the flow of migrants and refugees into Europe may be slowly unraveling. Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Monday that the country could walk away from the deal if its citizens are not granted visa-free travel throughout Europe in October. It

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News in the Humanosphere: South Sudanese troops attacked civilians as U.N. peacekeepers did…

On July 11, South Sudanese troops, fresh from winning a battle in the capital, Juba, over opposition forces, went on a nearly four-hour rampage through a residential compound popular with foreigners, in one of the worst targeted attacks on aid workers in South Sudan’s three-year civil war. They shot dead a local journalist while forcing

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50,000 march in protest against gender violence in Peru

In the latest of a series of public demonstrations against gender-based violence in Latin America, some 50,000 women’s rights advocates took to the streets on Saturday in cities across Peru. Peru’s newly inaugurated president, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, marched with First Lady Nancy Lange as well as most of his cabinet in a gesture of support for

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Congo at risk of being overwhelmed by yellow fever

A large outbreak of yellow fever in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has already put millions of people at risk and is threatening to become a major epidemic across neighboring countries, if not all of tropical and sub-tropical Africa. Yellow fever is a mosquito-borne viral disease that usually does not kill but causes jaundice,

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The WHO is improving data on stillbirths, maternal and neonatal deaths

The World Health Organization (WHO) is bolstering efforts to help countries improve their data on stillbirths and maternal and neonatal deaths, the majority of which are preventable with quality health care during pregnancy and childbirth. “We need to ensure all births and deaths are counted and that we can understand what to do to prevent

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Kiribati weightlifter dances to save his country from climate change

Olympic weightlifter David Katoatau may have finished last in his category on Monday, but the goofy Kiribati athlete won the cheers, the hearts – and the attention – of everyone who watched him dance off the stage to share a serious message: Climate change is destroying his home. “Most people don’t know where Kiribati is,”

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‘An alarming pattern of disregard for civilian life’ in Yemen airstrikes

In the span of just a few days, forces from the Saudi-led coalition destroyed a school and a hospital, killing dozens of civilians. The incidents were quickly deplored by human rights organizations, aid groups and the United Nations. Amnesty International went so far as to say that Monday’s bombing of a hospital supported by Doctors

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Lentera Sintas: breaking the silence around sexual violence in Indonesia

By Megan Herndon, special to Humanosphere Every two hours, three women in Indonesia experience sexual violence. Headlines have been plagued with stories of sexual assault including one of a middle school girl who was raped and killed by 12 men earlier this year. Indonesian President Joko Widodo has gone as far as approving chemical castration

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