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Wednesday, April 23 2014

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Europe Treaty on Violence Against Women to Take Effect

A ground-breaking European treaty on violence against women moved one step closer to entering into legal force, with Andorra becoming the 10th country to ratify it. With this milestone met, the treaty will become binding on August 1, 2014. Countries ratifying the treaty are obligated to protect and support victims of violence.

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New Report Confirms Organized Crime, Government Corruption, and Militia Links to Elephant Poaching and the Ivory Trade

Today, Born Free USA and C4ADS released "Ivory's Curse: The Militarization and Professionalization of Poaching in Africa," one of the most shocking, rigorous and in-depth analyses of elephant poaching and the ivory trade to date. The report examines links to violent militias, organized crime, government corruption, and ivory trade to Asia. It further exposes the widespread transnational illicit participants deeply interwoven into the system that moves ivory.

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On Mother Earth Day, UN urges protecting planet from 'heavy hand of humankind'

On International Mother Earth Day, the United Nations is urging greater efforts to promote sustainable development and use of renewable energy sources, with Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appealing for worldwide changes in attitude and practice to curb the negative impact of human activity on the planet.

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Protection of South Sudan's one million internally displaced is eroding - UN expert warns

The protection of South Sudan's one million internally displaced persons is further eroding amid persistent violence and deliberate ethnically targeted attacks, United Nations Special Rapporteur Chaloka Beyani warned today.

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Modern Greek tragedy: Suicide rates soar in Greece as economic cuts bite

The effect of economic cuts on debt ravaged Greece included a dramatic rise in the number of men committing suicide, according to new research.

The research, by Dr Nikolaos Antonakakis and Professor Alan Collins at the University of Portsmouth, is the first to examine the direct impact of fiscal austerity on suicide rates in any country.

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Everest sherpas say they are abandoning climbing season
Full story: Channel News Asia


UK: Nuclear dump 'virtually certain' to be eroded by rising sea levels and to contaminate the Cumbrian coast
Full story: The Guardian UK


Syria: UN agency warns no food left in besieged Palestinian refugee camp

The United Nations has renewed its demand for unimpeded humanitarian access to the besieged Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk, warning that there is no UN food aid left there as of Saturday given that the recent escalation fighting between the parties to the Syrian conflict has prevented the delivery of desperately needed assistance.

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UN envoy urges respect for religious freedom after Israeli forces disrupt Easter procession

A top United Nations envoy on Saturday said he was dismayed that a peaceful Easter procession led by Palestinian Christians through Jerusalem's Old City was disrupted by Israeli security forces.

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Updated: Magnitude 6.9 Earthquake - 62km SW of Panguna, Papua New Guinea

This earthquake is expected to have a low humanitarian impact based on the magnitude and the affected population and their vulnerability.

Earthquake Magnitude 6.5M, Depth:10km
4/19/2014 1:04:03 AM
About 85411 people within 100km

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The energy revolution is in reverse

Keeping the rise in global average temperatures to no more than 2°C above pre-industrial levels will not be prohibitively expensive, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says, though it won't be easy.

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President Vladimir Putin announces first shipment of Arctic oil from controversial platform

Russian President Vladimir Putin today announced that state owned energy company Gazprom is ready to send the first ever shipment of oil from offshore Arctic waters to Europe.


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Magnitude 7.5 Earthquake - 37km N of Tecpan de Galeana, Mexico

A magnitude 7.5 earthquake has occurred GUERRERO, MEXICO

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Demands That Jews Register in Eastern Ukraine Are Denounced, and Denied
Full story: NY Times


New evidence of suicide epidemic among India's 'marginalised' farmers

Latest statistical research finds strong causal links between areas with the most suicides and areas where impoverished farmers are trying to grow crops that suffer from wild price fluctuations due to India's relatively recent shift to free market economics.

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World Bank financed $1 billion in fossil fuel exploration projects

New analysis released today by Oil Change International finds that World Bank Group finance for projects that included exploration for new fossil fuel resources reached a new high in FY2013, at nearly $1 billion out of the $2.7 billion spent in total for fossil fuel projects.

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Bear bile farm in China to become a sanctuary with 130 bears rescued

Animal welfare organisation Animals Asia will convert a bear bile farm in Nanning, China, into a sanctuary following an unprecedented request by the farm to rescue and care for its 130 bears.

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Canada: Commercial Seal Hunt Opens, Continues to Require Government Support

After over 30 years of trying to revive the commercial seal hunt, and over $50 million in government support, the hunt will proceed again in 2014 despite the lack of markets. 


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World On Pace to Hit 4.8ºC by End of Century, Says UN Scientific Panel

Global greenhouse gas emissions increased by the equivalent of ten billion tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) between 2000 and 2010, according to a new report released this week by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and half of all human CO2 emissions between 1750 and 2010 have occurred in the last forty years. Without additional efforts to significantly cut emissions, global temperatures could hit a staggering 4.8C above preindustrial temperatures by the end of the century, with potentially disastrous consequences for humanity, ecosystems, and sustainable development.

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Sharp rise in environmental and land killings as pressure on planet's resources increases - report

Killings of people protecting the environment and rights to land increased sharply between 2002 and 2013 as competition for natural resources intensifies, a new report from Global Witness reveals. In the most comprehensive global analysis of the problem on record, the campaign group has found that at least 908 people are known to have died in this time. Disputes over industrial logging, mining and land rights the key drivers, and Latin America and Asia-Pacific particularly hard hit.

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Northern Gateway Pipeline Rejected By B.C. First Nation
Full story: Huffington Post Canada


Military spending continues to fall in the West but rises everywhere else, says SIPRI

World military expenditure totalled $1.75 trillion in 2013, a fall of 1.9 per cent in real terms since 2012, according to figures released today by Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). The comprehensive annual update of the SIPRI Military Expenditure Database is accessible from today at www.sipri.org.

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Pillay condemns rampant use of torture in detention in Syria

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay on Monday condemned the rampant use of torture in detention facilities across Syria by Government forces and some armed opposition groups, as her office issued a paper containing detailed testimony from victims and witnesses.

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Saudi Arabia Should Accelerate Reforms for Girls' Sports in State Schools, Says Human Rights Watch

In a welcome move that could advance rights for women and girls, Saudi Arabia's Shura Council has directed the Education Ministry to study the possibility of introducing physical education for girls in Saudi public schools. The council, the kingdom's highest consultative body, voted overwhelmingly – 92 votes to 18 – in favor of the recommendation, but the Ministry of Education must draft and present regulations, and the Shura Council and Cabinet must approve them before sports for girls in public schools becomes a reality, Human Rights Watch said.

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On Global Day, UN expert urges less military spending, more investment in development

Marking the Global Day of Action on Military Spending, the United Nations independent expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order called on all governments to boost transparency and cuts in military expenditures, and increase investments in nutrition, health, environmental protection and other major sustainable development challenges.

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Magnitude 7.4 Earthquake near the Solomon Islands - Tsunami warnings issued

The April 13 earthquake occurred less than 24 hours and approximately 20 km to the southwest of a M 7.7 strike-slip earthquake on April 12, 2014. While the April 12 strike-slip earthquake likely represented Australia:Pacific plate boundary faulting, the April 13 earthquake is located south of the plate boundary at a depth of approximately 35 km, and as such may represent tearing of the Australia plate to accommodate the abrupt change in Australian plate interaction with the Pacific plate (subduction to the north and west; left-lateral translation to the east).

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IPCC Presents Assessment on Measures to Mitigate Climate Change

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the group of the world's leading climate change scientists established by the UN General Assembly and working under the auspices of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organization, has just released in Berlin, after 6 years of intensive work reviewing all available science, its 2014 assessment on measures to mitigate climate change.

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Magnitude 7.6 Earthquake near the Solomon Islands - Tsunami in progress

A magnitude 7.6 earthquake has occurred SOLOMON ISLANDS at:
11.28S 162.25E Depth 20km 12/04/2014 at 20:14:39 (Universal Time)

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Latest UN Report Calls for Massive Reduction in Fossil Fuel Investments

The latest UN climate report will project that annual investment in fossil fuels will decline about $30 billion a year while investment in low carbon technologies will rise by roughly $147 billion, according to leaked drafts.

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Sudan faces worsening hunger and malnutrition crisis

Farmers and herders in Sudan need urgent support to help prevent the food security situation in the country from deteriorating further, FAO warned today.

Some 3.3 million people are currently suffering from food insecurity with numbers likely to rise to 4 million in the coming months due to a combination of increased conflict and displacement in Darfur, refugee movement from neighbouring South Sudan, poor harvest and spiralling food prices.

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