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News in the Humanosphere: A Genocide in Iraq?

The Kurdish Yazidi ethnic group is under extreme assault by ISIS. In the New Yorker, George Packer relays the harrowing tale of entire villages of Yazidis being emptied as ISIS militants make their advance. “Yesterday, a senior US official told me that the Obama Administration is contemplating an airlift, coördinated with the United Nations, of humanitarian supplies by C-130 transport planes to the Yazidis hiding in the Sinjar mountains. There are at least twenty thousand and perhaps as many as a hundred thousand of them, including some peshmerga militiamen providing a thin cover of protection. The U.N. has reported that dozens of children have died of thirst in the heat. ISIS controls the entrance to the mountains. Iraqi helicopters have dropped some supplies, including food and water, but the refugees are hard to find and hard to reach.” (New Yorker)

Ebola Outbreak
Liberia shut a major hospital in the capital Monrovia on Wednesday after a Spanish priest and six other staff contracted Ebola, as the death toll from the worst outbreak of the disease hit 932 in West Africa. (Reuters)

The death toll from the world’s worst Ebola outbreak has risen to 932 after 45 patients died between Aug. 2 and Aug. 4, the World Health Organization said in a statement on Wednesday. (Reuters)

A Nigerian nurse infected with the Ebola virus has died, the second confirmed fatality from the disease in Africa’s most populous nation and leading oil producer, the country’s health minister said on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Relatives of Ebola victims in Liberia defied government quarantine orders and dumped infected bodies in the streets as West African governments struggled to enforce tough measures to curb an outbreak. (Reuters)

A team of medical ethicists are weighing the implications of making an experimental drug to treat ebola available to west Africans. (ABC)

Africa

The UN Mission in South Sudan condemned the killing of five Sudanese aid workers, apparently on the basis of their ethnicity. (UNMISS)

Uganda’s parliament will try to re-introduce an anti-homosexuality law that was thrown out by a court, a lawmaker leading the effort said on Wednesday, a move that could once again damage relations with the West. (Reuters)

The government of the Central African Republic has stepped down. The resignation comes as part of a peace deal aimed at ending months of sectarian violence in which thousands have died. (Deutsche Welle)

Rains and insecurity caused by Nigerian Islamist militants are aggravating a cholera outbreak in northern Cameroon which has killed at least 75 people and infected some 1,400 others since April. (IRIN)

Thousands of people displaced by floods and a mudslide in the Burundian capital Bujumbura and surrounding areas in February 2014 need more help to reconstruct their homes and livelihoods, aid workers say. (IRIN)

Human Rights Watch is calling on U.S. President Barack Obama to ensure that human rights concerns are a major focus of this week’s U.S. African Leaders Summit in Washington, D.C. HRW says at least a dozen of the 50 African heads of state attending the event lead repressive governments that have imprisoned journalists, human rights defenders, and anti-corruption campaigners. (VOA)

MENA

An Egyptian court upheld death sentences on Wednesday against 12 Muslim Brotherhood supporters convicted of killing a police officer last year, judicial sources said. (Reuters)

Asia

The most effective drug we have against malaria is losing its potency in Southeast Asia. Doctors can still cure most forms of the disease, but it takes longer and more medications. (NPR)

Innovation in the fields of renewable energy, food production, water conservation, education and health will be crucial for the developing economies of Asia to meet the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. (IPS)

A landslide in Nepal on 2 August killed 33 and 122 are still missing as search and rescue continues. Experts say this event, one of the deadliest in the country’s recent history, is a wake-up call for hazard mapping, early warning, and disaster management. (IRIN)

China says the death toll from Sunday’s powerful earthquake in the southwestern province of Yunnan has risen sharply to 589. (VOA)

The Americas

Medicare is paying for HIV drugs for hundreds of patients who may not have the disease, an inspector general’s investigation finds. A 77-year-old woman with no record of HIV got $33,500 of medication. (NPR)

Three emergency shelters housing an influx of children from Central America who entered the US illegally will be closed because numbers are falling. (BBC)

Opinion/Blogs

Will these sustainable development goals do the job? (Guardian)

Africa is More Organised (SAPA)

Land Grabs‘ and Responsible Agricultural Investment (OSISA)

It Is About the Money, Stupid – U.S.-Africa Summit Comes to Life (Daily Maverick)

Global Health blog: Is PrEP Cost-Effective? (CGD)

An Elusive Peace for the Central African Republic (UN Dispatch)

Is the $200 million World Bank pledge toward the $73 million WHO request in fighting Ebola enough? (Haba na Haba)

The Saddest PDF in the Whole Internet (Campaign for Boring Development)

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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]humanosphere.org.