News in the Humanosphere: Boko Haram shows kidnapped Chibok girls in video

Martha Mark, the mother of kidnapped school girl Monica Mark cries as she displays her photo, in the family house, in Chibok, Nigeria. In a new video released late Oct 31, Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau dashed hopes for a prisoner exchange to get the girls released. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba, File)

The Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram has released a video showing some of the schoolgirls they abducted from the northern town of Chibok. Some 50 girls are shown with a gunman who demands the release of fighters in return for the girls, and says some girls died in air strikes. The government says it is in touch with the militants behind the video. The group is said to be holding more than 200 of the 276 final-year girls it seized from a school in April 2014. Non-Muslims were forcibly converted to Islam, and it is feared that many of the schoolgirls have been sexually abused and forced into “marriage” by their captors. (BBC http://buff.ly/2b679Mp)

A major anti-Islamic State offensive under way in Iraq..Iraqi Kurdish forces say they have retaken five villages east of the Islamic State-held city of Mosul in an operation launched early Sunday.U.S.-backed Kurdish forces known as peshmerga aim to “clear several more villages” in “one of many shaping operations” that will increase pressure on the extremist group, the Kurdish region’s Security Council said in a statement. Peshmerga Brig. Gen. Dedewan Khurshid Tofiq described the operation outside Mosul as “ongoing.” Rudaw, a local television network, showed footage of smoke rising from a village in the distance as armored vehicles pushed across a field. The council’s statement said the area cleared is about 50 square kilometers (20 square miles). It said the U.S.-led coalition is supporting the operation with airstrikes, one of which destroyed a car bomb.”  ABC http://abcn.ws/2aWfEIp)

Africa

Fighting flared in South Sudan late on Saturday southwest of the capital between forces loyal to the president and those backing the opposition, after clashes last month raised fears of a slide back into civil war. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/2bgvwc5)

At least 36 people have been killed in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, the government said Sunday, calling it a massacre in revenge for military operations in the area. (AFP http://yhoo.it/2aUV2Bg)

Dozens of people have been killed in a violent clash between a pro-government militia group and a separatist umbrella organization in northern Mali, a local source told Anadolu Agency Friday. (Anadolu Post http://bit.ly/2aWfUHg)

President Edgar Lungu was ahead of his main rival on Saturday in early counting from Zambia’s presidential election, but the main opposition said its count showed their candidate ahead and the vote may have been rigged. (Reuters http://bit.ly/2bruWVg)

The U.N. peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic said on Sunday it arrested 10 heavily armed men, who a minister identified as former rebels. (AFP http://yhoo.it/2bgwd4Z)

The security chief of a Rwandan warlord wanted under an international warrant has been arrested in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, a military spokesman said Sunday. (AFP http://bit.ly/2bvvgWY)

Thousands of houses have been destroyed and several villages submerged after flooding triggered by torrential rainfall killed 100 people across Sudan, officials and an AFP photographer said on Sunday. (AFP http://bit.ly/2bvvDkl)

Mali, one of the world’s poorest countries, has identified 13,000 fictitious workers on the state payroll who had cost a total of  $50 million, according to the information minister. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/2aWgh4H)

MENA

At least 10 children have been killed and 28 others injured in an airstrike in Yemen, according to Doctors Without Borders. (Sky News http://bit.ly/2bvvRbi)  

Hundreds of civilians have been killed in both Syrian government and rebel attacks across the war-torn country in recent days, according to local activist groups.  (Al Jazeera http://bit.ly/2aWg7dE)

A Palestinian detainee who has been on a hunger strike for two months to press for his release is determined to continue despite deteriorating health, his family and an advocacy group said. (AP http://yhoo.it/2aT6GcL)

Asia

Hundreds of Filipinos rallied in stormy weather Sunday against President Rodrigo Duterte’s decision to allow dictator Ferdinand Marcos to be buried in a heroes’ cemetery, but Duterte remained firm in his stance despite growing opposition. (NYT http://nyti.ms/2aWg5lN)

A human rights group on Sunday said two refugees being held at a Papua New Guinea detention center were bashed by locals, fueling criticism of Australia’s tough offshore detention rules for asylum seekers. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/2aUUGKV)

A series of bombings that killed four and injured dozens in Thailand at the end of last week was committed by a widespread network that followed the instructions of a single person, a police official said on Sunday, although he declined to identify the perpetrators. (NYT http://nyti.ms/2aWgWms)

The Americas

U.S. officials have awarded funding for the study and prevention of outbreaks of the Zika virus to three teams of public health researchers at Johns Hopkins University. (Fox Baltimore http://bit.ly/2aWgiWe)

A criminal gang in Mexico has dropped three iceboxes with a decapitated head in each near a government building in Chilpancingo, the capital of the western state of Guerrero. Three bodies were found in streets nearby.  (BBC http://bbc.in/2b4xoTB)

Some 50,000 people marched Saturday in Peru’s capital and other cities, police said, to protest rampant violence against women in a highly conservative society. (AFP http://yhoo.it/2aT6BWx)

The federal state of emergency in Flint, Mich., expired, as the city continues to navigate a public health crisis caused by lead-laced water. (NPR http://n.pr/2aUUNq4)

Eight people were shot dead by unknown assailants early on Sunday in the outskirts of Honduras’s capital Tegucigalpa, police said, an apparent reprisal attack in a bloody gang dispute that has devastated the poor Central-American nation. (Reuters http://yhoo.it/2b4wSVA)

Donald Trump, clearly angered by news reports that he has grown depressed and sullen over his fading presidential prospects, has issued some of his sharpest attacks on the media. (AFP http://yhoo.it/2b4xbjf)

…and the rest

The leading female candidate to be the next secretary-general of the United Nations, Argentine Foreign Minister Susana Malcorra, said Sunday she sees lingering sexism in the election. (AFP http://yhoo.it/2b4x5rF)

Gold medal-winner Ryan Lochte and three other members of the U.S. Olympic swimming team have been robbed at Rio. (BBC http://bbc.in/2aSDIKe)

Opinion/Blogs

Can a new peacekeeping force stabilize South Sudan? (UN Dispatch http://bit.ly/2aSfrWB)

Rio safe? Tell that to residents afraid of the police (AFP http://yhoo.it/2aT6aeM)

How will joining the UN change IOM? (IRIN http://buff.ly/2bgw5md)

Guinea eyes official end of polio outbreak but bigger challenge remains for Africa (Guardian http://buff.ly/2aT8hPJ)

How marriage registration data can boost gender equality (Devex http://buff.ly/2b4ziDz)

Gaps in current campaign strategies (From Poverty to Power http://buff.ly/2b4zpyZ)

Time for a whole-of-nation approach to asylum seekers (The Interpreter http://buff.ly/2aT7uhC)

Donors and NGOs: we must change the way we work (WhyDev Blog http://buff.ly/2b4zbrO)

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