News in the Humanosphere: Trump eyes massive cuts to UNICEF

Children collect water in jerry cans from a UNICEF truck in Aleppo, Syria. (Credit: UNICEF)

The White House budget office informed State Department officials this week that the administration plans to eliminate all U.S. funding to the $326 million International Organizations and Programs account, which provides more than $130 million to the U.N. Children’s Fund, a sizeable chunk of the more than $500 million the U.S. contributed to UNICEF in 2016,  and around $70 million to the U.N. Development Program. They were also told to brace for a 40 percent cut to the State Department’s U.N. peacekeeping budget. The U.S. contributed over $2 billion to the U.N.’s $8 billion-plus peacekeeping budget last year. (FP http://atfp.co/2nHswuh)

Largest polio vaccine campaign ever in Africa … “More than 190,000 polio vaccinators in 13 countries across west and central Africa will immunize more than 116 million children over the next week, to tackle the last remaining stronghold of polio on the continent. The synchronized vaccination campaign, one of the largest of its kind ever implemented in Africa, is part of urgent measures to permanently stop polio on the continent.  All children under five years of age in the 13 countries – Benin, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria and Sierra Leone – will be simultaneously immunized in a coordinated effort to raise childhood immunity to polio across the continent. In August 2016, four children were paralysed by the disease in security-compromised areas in Borno state, north-eastern Nigeria, widely considered to be the only place on the continent where the virus maintains its grip.” (WHO  http://bit.ly/2nNBXsw )

Top Stories

A French national was kidnapped on Thursday in eastern Chad, a French military source said. (Reuters http://bit.ly/2mw3H4C)

The Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) and Head of United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL), Martin Kobler is gravely concerned at continued and persistent reports of serious violations of international humanitarian and human rights law being perpetrated across Libya. (UN http://bit.ly/2mUD1pr)

As fighting rages in Mosul, Iraq, civilians in the city are caught in the crossfire with limited access to lifesaving medical care. Risking their lives, tens of thousands have fled since the offensive on the western part of the city started on 19 February. Thousands of wounded have been rushed from the conflict area by ambulance. (MSF http://bit.ly/2mUrXJ9)

More than 1,100 children per day could drop out of school in 2017, an international children’s rights organization warned Thursday, the first day of the new Afghan school year. (VOA http://bit.ly/2mYfmWb)

The authorities in Venezuela say they have arrested six children in connection with the killing of two soldiers. (BBC http://bbc.in/2nGRgTo)

Opinion/Blogs

U.N. Peacekeeping is not a charity. It protects America and Americans. (UN Dispatch http://bit.ly/2nNAF0O)

What North Korea Wants (Global Dispatches Podcast  http://bit.ly/2nNsxND)

Why is east Africa facing a hunger crisis and what can be done? (Guardian http://bit.ly/2mwjWie)

Menstrual Hygiene Project Keeps Girls in School (IPS http://bit.ly/2mYkLw8)

Powdered Vaccine Raises Hopes Of Stopping A Top Killer Of Kids (Goats and Soda http://n.pr/2ngwE3s)

Rural women lead fight against infant mortality in DR Congo (Reuters http://bit.ly/2nb8TIc)

Go inside a maternity ward at the world’s largest Syrian refugee camp (PRI http://bit.ly/2nH4Xl7)

10 things you need to know about the looming famine in Somalia (OCHA http://bit.ly/2nH1LG7)

Why is peacebuilding so difficult to achieve? (ODI http://bit.ly/2nGWpe8)

Can you tally up world progress? (CSM https://yhoo.it/2nH5TG4)

In Time of Crisis, Venezuelans Help the Hungry (Reuters http://bit.ly/2mUjZj9)

Some of the obstacles and solutions to ensure that we reach the ambitious targets of ‘water, sanitation and hygiene for all’ set out in SDG 6, the ‘water goal’. (ODI http://bit.ly/2nNELWE )

 

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