News in the Humanosphere: Thai demonstrators arrested for reading Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four

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Police in Thailand arrested eight people Sunday for demonstrating against the nation’s increasingly repressive military junta, including a man who was dragged away by undercover officers for reading a copy of George Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty-Four” outside one of Bangkok’s most luxurious shopping malls. (AP)

Dozens of villagers are feared dead after attacks by suspected Boko Haram Islamist militants in Nigeria’s northeastern Borno state. The raids on Saturday morning were close to Chibok, from where more than 200 schoolgirls were abducted in April. (BBC)

The United Nations will seek ways to toughen environmental laws this week to crack down on everything from illegal trade in wildlife to mercury poisoning and hazardous waste. (Reuters)


The recent rapid spread of Ebola in three countries in West Africa has come in part because efforts to contain the deadly virus have been relaxed, says the WHO. (AFP )

While the cement factories in Senegal are at war, ostensibly over the environmental impact one company will have on this West African nation, experts have cautioned that as the government plans to radically develop and industrialise the country, striking a balance between environmental protection and development will be key. (IPS)


Egyptian President Sisi received US Secretary of State John Kerry in Cairo today. Sisi is gathering international support for his presidency, and the US is promising to resume delivery of Apache attack helicopters. (CSM)

Iran’s supreme leader accused the United States on Sunday of trying to retake control of Iraq by exploiting sectarian rivalries, as Sunni insurgents drove toward Baghdad from new strongholds along the Syrian border. (Reuters)


Political uncertainties about Afghanistan’s presidential elections have fueled long-term security and economic worries among the displaced, and many of them are now increasingly reluctant to return home. (VOA)

A new study from the World Bank now has some experts predicting that China will become the world’s largest economy–by one measure–this year. (VOA)

Polling stations across Hong Kong opened Sunday in an unofficial referendum on democratic reform in the former British colony, a move that has angered Beijing. (VOA)

Pakistan says more than 300,000 people, including women and children have left its North Waziristan border district where an army counter-terrorism offensive is under way. (VOA)

The Americas

The US Border Patrol will fly nearly 300 Central American migrants from south Texas to California for processing, an official said, as the government seeks to ease the workload on agents at the nation’s busiest corridor for illegal crossings. (AP)

A Los Angeles doctor recently received a $8.5 million grant to train city barbers to measure hypertension, a condition that’s common — and deadly — among African-American men. (AP)


From Thailand, Evidence of Coups’ Economic Costs (Dart Throwing Chimp)

For These 2 Women, the Lottery of Birth Decides Opportunity (NY Times)

Segovia: A New Player in Cash Transfers (Development Channel)

Balancing the Scale of Conflict Early Warning Systems (Tower of Babel)

America’s Refugee Crisis (UN Dispatch)

New analysis on how to measure & build political commitment for food and nutrition security (Development Horizons)

Global Peace on the decline in 2014 (DevPolicy)

A healthy, peaceful and secure Africa is within our grasp (Guardian)

Is the UN turning its back on the human right to water? (Guardian)

How was Africa? (Africa is a Country )



About Author

Tom Murphy

Tom Murphy is a New Hampshire-based reporter for Humanosphere. Before joining Humanosphere, Tom founded and edited the aid blog A View From the Cave. His work has appeared in Foreign Policy, the Huffington Post, the Guardian, GlobalPost and Christian Science Monitor. He tweets at @viewfromthecave. Contact him at tmurphy[at]