News in the Humanosphere: Funding secured for malaria vaccine pilot to start in 2018

Malaria rapid diagnostic test. (Credit: Novartis AG/flickr)

Funding for phase one of pilot deployments of the world’s first malaria vaccine in sub-Saharan Africa has been secured and immunization campaigns will begin in 2018, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday. The vaccine, known as RTS,S or Mosquirix and developed by British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline, is only partially effective and needs to be given in a four-dose schedule, but is the first approved shot against the mosquito-borne disease. The WHO said last year that while RTS,S was promising, it should be deployed only on a pilot basis before any wide-scale use, given its limited efficacy. Pedro Alonso, director of the WHO’s Global Malaria Programme, said on Thursday that securing funding and being able to trial the vaccine in Africa pilots would be a milestone in the fight against malaria. (Reuters http://reut.rs/2g0Enxj)  

U.S. seeks South Sudan arms embargo…After years of threatening, the USA finally follows through. “The United States said on Thursday it plans to circulate to the 15-member United Nations Security Council a draft resolution to impose an arms embargo on South Sudan and targeted sanctions on “individuals who have been the biggest spoilers” of peace. Samantha Power, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, told the council she would put forward the draft resolution in the coming days.” (Daily Mail http://dailym.ai/2g0vUdg)

The U.K. said on Thursday it had ratified the Paris Agreement, the global deal to combat climate change. (Reuters https://yhoo.it/2g18yGP)

Top Stories

Clashes raged in Yemen killing at least 27 people Thursday as the Saudi-led coalition said military operations will continue despite US Secretary of State John Kerry announcing a truce. (AFP https://yhoo.it/2flbL0o)

International donors promised $2.2 billion for the Central African Republic on Thursday, seeking to cement a recovery from three years of sectarian strife that has left the country dependent on United Nations peacekeepers. (Reuters https://yhoo.it/2fJznMT)

WHO condemns the attacks on five hospitals that took place in Syria on 13–15 November 2016, including three hospitals in Western Rural Aleppo and two hospitals in Idleb. (WHO http://bit.ly/2fJv4B9)

A U.N. expert asked Nigeria on Thursday for urgent information about a forced eviction of thousands of people from makeshift homes in Lagos, amid reports of brutality and possible breaches of human rights laws. (Reuters https://yhoo.it/2fJyrIr)

India’s government on Thursday announced immediate steps to ease a cash crunch for farmers amid widespread criticism of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s shock decision to withdraw high-value bills in the middle of the sowing and wedding season. (Reuters https://yhoo.it/2g1cF5M)

The United Nations on Thursday said its budget to assist people suffering from Zimbabwe’s worst drought in a quarter of a century that left millions in need of food aid had fallen short by $140 million. (Reuters https://yhoo.it/2g10Z34)

China must increase clean and efficient use of coal, the country’s premier said, adding that it also should increase the use and development of renewable energy, state radio reported late on Thursday. (Reuters https://yhoo.it/2fJq4wx)

West African leaders have agreed a new approach to infectious diseases in an attempt to avert any repetition of the disastrous Ebola outbreak. (Guardian http://bit.ly/2fJu2Fi)

Central and West African countries have promised to protect their tropical forests from being cut down to make way for palm oil crops, in a declaration signed by governments representing more than 70 percent of Africa’s tropical forests. (Reuters http://bit.ly/2g1a3ow)

The United States and Iran on Thursday clashed openly at the U.N. atomic watchdog for the first time since they signed a landmark nuclear deal last year, differing over Tehran’s repeated testing of one of the deal’s less strictly defined limits. (Reuters https://yhoo.it/2fJuTpu)

Thousands of Taiwanese have protested outside the legislature for and against a bill that could make it the first place in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage. (VOA http://bit.ly/2fJt5wP)

Opinion/Blogs

Why Donald Trump Probably Wont Wreck the Paris Climate Agreement (Global Dispatches Podcast http://buff.ly/2fJBn7R)

Inequality and Its Discontents (IPS http://bit.ly/2g0IPP2)

Why leaving women out of Trump’s cabinet isn’t just wrong — it’s dangerous (PRI’s the World http://bit.ly/2fJ7wMZ)

Migration facts in a post-truth world (IRIN http://bit.ly/2g1aEqw)

Trump Takes Office At A Pivotal Moment For Foreign Aid (NPR Goats and Soda http://buff.ly/2g19gUC)

The myth of Donald Trump’s white working-class support (Africa is a Country http://buff.ly/2fJBwbc)

Whatever Happens, the ICC’s Investigation into US Torture in Afghanistan is a Win for the Court (Justice in Conflict http://buff.ly/2fJwVWD)

Trump’s Offensive Against Undocumented Migrants Will Fuel Migration Crisis (IPS http://bit.ly/2fJ86tU)

How Might Trump Change Africa Policy? (allAfrica http://bit.ly/2g17ItT)

The impact of India’s sudden ban on high-value banknotes (ODI http://buff.ly/2fleo2u)

Can $10 billion end Nigeria’s century-long oil war? (IRIN http://bit.ly/2f8vu5Y)

Leading from the top to promote health and sustainable development (Devex http://buff.ly/2fZVtKm)

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