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News in the Humanosphere: Crackdown in Burundi begins

The Burundian foreign ministry said protesters against President Pierre Nkurunziza would be treated as “accomplices” of the generals who staged last week’s failed coup. Meanwhile, the army is taking to the streets and clashing with protesters. This could turn ugly. “The military had been largely neutral through weeks of protests against President Pierre Nkurunziza. But on Monday, army reinforcements called in from the countryside to put down the coup stayed on to control the streets of Bujumbura, while police appeared to take a lesser role. While protesters said some soldiers fired into the crowd and hit demonstrators, reporters also saw soldiers backing away from mobs of shouting young men, provoked but unwilling to fire. It was a sign of potential division inside the government and military as Mr. Nkurunziza insists on running for a third term despite international censure and popular anger at the decision.  (Reuters

World Bank boosts education
The World Bank is to allocate $5 billion to improve the quality of global education over the next five years. The money will be disbursed after development partners have met pre-agreed targets, the bank said. (Guardian

Quote of the day: Paranoid Eritrean government edition
“Eritrea proposes…a robust and concerted effort to identify,arrest and prosecute the human trafficking criminals, and all those who in different guises, including human rights activism,are complicit in these crimes.” (AFP


Burundian Defense Minister Pontien Gaciyubwenge has been dismissed five days after a failed military coup against President Pierre Nkurunziza, government spokesman Gervais Abayeho said on Monday. (Reuters

The United Nations refugee agency says more than 110,000 people have fled the Burundian crisis that some fear could descend into another bout of ethnic bloodletting in the heart of Africa’s Great Lakes. (Reuters

Tanzania confirmed a cholera outbreak on Monday at a refugee camp sheltering thousands of people who had fled political unrest in neighboring Burundi. (Reuters

Fluttering flags displayed a black eagle and a machete, the symbol of Burundi’s ruling party, as cheering supporters of President Pierre Nkurunziza celebrated the crushing of a coup. (AFP

The United States helped evacuate American, Canadian and other foreign citizens from Burundi, rocked by weeks of deadly street protests and an attempted coup, a State Department spokesman said. (AFP


Dozens of children have been killed, at least 12 raped and others abducted and recruited in attacks in South Sudan’s Unity state over a two-week period, the U.N. children’s agency reported Monday. (AP

Two hundred suspected human smugglers have been detained as part of the Ethiopian government’s efforts to stem the number of citizens trying to illegally migrate to Europe, a senior official said. (VOA

Guinea’s opposition leader pledged to continue the protests in which at least four people have been killed unless President Alpha Conde allows prompt local elections. (Reuters

Investigations in Tanzania have revealed that about 1,300 people are at risk of losing their land or homes to make way for a sugarcane plantation, which is a flagship project of the G7’s initiative to increase agricultural investment in Africa, the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition. (VOA

A group of African women mayors, representing both small and big towns on the continent, are calling for greater attention to communities without electricity, given the inextricable link between climate change and energy. (IPS

South Sudan’s army is advancing on a key rebel enclave, a spokesman said Monday, as UN and aid agencies warned fighting had cut hundreds of thousands of civilians off from “life-saving aid”. (AFP

Power outages are the biggest brake on South Africa’s economic growth, Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene said Monday, as factories, homes and offices across the country continue to suffer from long electricity cuts. (AFP


The battle for Ramadi will soon begin
”A column of 3,000 Shi’ite militia fighters assembled at a military base near Ramadi, preparing to take on Islamic State militants advancing in armored vehicles from the captured city northwest of Baghdad, witnesses and a military officer said. The decision by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, who is a Shi’ite, to send in the militias to try to retake the predominantly Sunni city could add to sectarian hostility in one of the most violent parts of Iraq.” (Reuters )

A BBC journalist invited to Qatar to examine the living conditions of workers building infrastructure for the 2022 football World Cup was detained for more than 24 hours, the broadcaster reported on Monday. (AFP

The United States believes the death sentence for former Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi is “unjust and undermines confidence in the rule of law,” the State Department said on Monday. (Reuters

EU foreign and defense ministers have agreed to launch a naval mission in the Mediterranean to target gangs smuggling people from Libya to Europe. (Guardian

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon voiced disappointment at the failure to extend a humanitarian cease-fire in Yemen despite repeated calls by the United Nations to do so, a spokesman for Ban said on Monday. (Reuters

An advocacy group says most Jordanian journalists are “too scared” to criticize the king, the security forces and tribal leaders. (AP


With few mental health services in rural areas, where most Cambodians live, patients have to come to centers like this for treatment. But with just 10 psychiatrists and as many nurses, most get just a few minutes before leaving with a bottle of pills. (VOA

For hundreds of migrants stranded at sea in sinking boats, the first helping hand came not from governments but from fishermen who towed them to safety.  (AP

Myanmar Monday acknowledged international “concerns” about waves of boatpeople, many of whom are fleeing from persecution, but denied it is solely to blame as thousands languish in dire straits at sea. (AFP

More than 30 police officers and 38 civilians were injured in southwestern China during a weekend protest by residents who feared that a planned railway would bypass their community, authorities said Monday. (AP

Fake Diplomas, Real Cash: The story of a Pakistani diploma mill that earns millions and rips off people around the world. (NYT

The Americas

At least 40 people have been killed and dozens are missing after a landslide in northwest Colombia in the early hours of Monday, officials said. (Reuters

Venezuelan opposition candidates, campaigning on a shoestring and sometimes from behind bars, sought a chance Sunday to take part in what may be their best chance in years to defeat the country’s socialist government. (AP

Labels on packaged steaks and other cuts of red meat in the United States that say where the animals were born, raised and slaughtered will have to be dropped or revised after a World Trade Organization ruling Monday. (AP

Whether it’s because of corruption scandals or stagnant growth, the popularity of the crop of leftist Latin American governments that have been running the region since the start of the millennium appears to be waning. (AP

Two Argentine judges are under fire for cutting the sentence of a convicted child abuser on the grounds that his 6-year-old victim had suffered earlier abuse and therefore had already been traumatized. (AP

...and the rest

More than half of the pregnant immigrant women seen by a medical charity in European clinics lack access to basic healthcare and permission to reside, a charity said on Monday. (Reuters

World Health Organization director-general Margaret Chan announced on Monday that she was establishing a $100 million contingency fund to ensure that the U.N. agency has the resources to respond immediately to a major crisis. (Reuters

Governments around the world charge prices for energy that do not account for its harmful environmental, health and other side effects, amounting to a $5.3 trillion “post-tax” subsidy this year, the International Monetary Fund said in a report on Monday. (Reuters


Universal health coverage and private hospitals are not mutually exclusive (Guardian

Poverty Reduction: Sorting Through the Hype (Development Impact

Diluting India’s child labour law will trap families in cycle of poverty (Guardian

Recent Developments and Perspectives on Mediterranean Migration Crisis (Sahel Blog

Moving Beyond Utopia to What’s Possible for 2030: Setting Realistic Sustainable Development Goals (CFR

African and Asian leaders call for new development bank (Development Truths

What’s the deal with China’s new military base in Djibouti? (Africa is a Country

BRICS in Africa – challenging the old order or consolidating it? (Global Dashboard

Clinton Foundation controversies throw spotlight on nonprofit finances (Devex

View on Migration: Gay asylum seekers face unfair system (SciDevNet

Clinical marvel, financial failure: the tragic tale of sofosbuvir (The Lancet Global Health Blog


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]