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News in the Humanosphere: Myanmar suffers “worst flooding in decades”

2008 flood in Tatchiliek, Burma. (Credit: garycycles/flickr)

The flooding has affected even areas of the country not accustomed to these types of disasters, compounding the complexity of the relief efforts. “Washed-out roads and bloated rivers are just two of the challenges facing relief workers who are trying to assess the damage caused by flooding in Myanmar, which has already killed 27 people and affected at least 150,000 and is expected to get worse. Myanmar’s government declared a state of emergency in four areas that have been inundated by heavy monsoon rains. A cyclone that formed in the Bay of Bengal unusually late in the year has worsened flooding in the western states of Rakhine and Chin over the past few days. Social media users have speculated that the flooding is the worst to hit Myanmar in decades, but the extent of the damage remains to be seen as authorities are having a hard time reaching many areas.” (IRIN

More on the floods
At least 75 people have died and tens of thousands have had to take refuge in state-run relief camps after heavy rains caused floods and landslides in eastern India, government officials and aid groups said on Monday. (TRF

Washed-out roads and bloated rivers are just two of the challenges facing relief workers who are trying to assess the damage caused by flooding in Myanmar, which has already killed 27 people and affected at least 150,000 and is expected to get worse. (IRIN

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi visited one of the country’s many flood-hit areas, raising her profile amid a national disaster that could have consequences in this November’s general election. (VOA


Two new cases of Ebola surfaced in Sierra Leone’s Tonkolili District after a man died last week in the area where the deadly virus had been gone for months, an official said. (AP

Traumatized and stigmatized, Ebola aid workers in Sierra Leone have been left to cope alone but now help is at hand with counseling and efforts to reintegrate them into society. (Guardian

Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders lashed out Monday at the “despicable assault” against an AFP reporter in Burundi, who says he was detained and badly beaten after a top general was assassinated. (AFP

The U.N. said Monday it had begun repatriating more than 600 people who had fled to the now violence-torn Central African Republic from the Democratic Republic of Congo six years ago. (AFP

South Africa’s public ombudsman on Monday bemoaned attacks against her report into President Jacob Zuma’s $24 million state-funded upgrades to his private residence. (AFP

With the mining industry hit by low global commodity prices, the government of Madagascar has promoted tourism as a spur of growth and job creation in one of the world’s poorest nations. (Reuters


Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has signed into law election-related legislation, the official gazette said on Sunday, opening the way to setting a date for long-delayed parliamentary polls. (Reuters

A 27-year-old Moroccan man suffocated while trying to illegally enter Spain hidden inside a suitcase in the trunk of a car, police said Monday. (AFP

The U.N. agency helping Palestinian refugees says a $101 million funding gap could keep 500,000 Palestinian students out of school this fall. (AP


There was no consensus Monday on how soon talks to conclude the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact could be revived after the 12 parties failed to reach a deal at what was intended to be the concluding round last week in Hawaii. (VOA

India has blocked hundreds of adult websites to prevent pornography becoming a social nuisance, a government official said on Monday, sparking a debate about censorship and freedom in the world’s largest democracy. (Reuters

Nepal’s proposed new constitution has sparked fury from women who say their citizenship, property and other rights are being curtailed by the document designed to draw a line under centuries of inequality. (AFP

The Americas

A legal victory for IRD
A federal judge Monday ordered the U.S. Agency for International Development to undo the January suspension of one of its largest nonprofit contractors, saying the agency’s attempt to sanction the widely criticized contractor violated the law. (WaPo

Landless Workers’ Movement occupied the first floor of the Brazilian Ministry of Finance as a protest against the policy of fiscal adjustment and budget cuts of the government. (Prensa Latina

With an investigation barely under way, Mexican journalist protection groups are already expressing fears that authorities won’t consider the brutal killing of a photojournalist as being related to his work – even though he fled the state he covered fearing for his safety. (AP

Nearly 10 years into a deep economic slump, Puerto Rico is no closer to pulling out, and, in fact, is poised to plummet further. (AP

Brazil’s federal police on Monday arrested former government minister Jose Dirceu, one of the most senior members of the ruling Workers’ Party to be jailed so far in a probe of alleged corruption at state-run oil company Petrobras. (Reuters

Authorities say six gang leaders held in a maximum-security prison in El Salvador escaped after they were taken to a police station ahead of a court hearing. (AP

...and the rest

The European Union is offering funds and aid to help France cope with growing numbers of migrants near the northern city of Calais. (AP

Britain’s government promised new measures Monday to crack down on illegal immigrants by making landlords evict them, as the Calais migrants crisis continued to dominate the headlines. (AFP


The number of African millionaires is set to grow by nearly 50 percent over the next 10 years (GlobalPost

These are the four SDGs we need to agree on to help the planet (Guardian

Global Dispatches podcast episode 75: James Fearon

Can redefining humanity be Muhammad Yunus’ legacy? (Devex

How A Scientist’s Slick Discovery Helped Save Preemies’ Lives (NPR

The lions and the hunters (Africa is a Country

Shared value: Taking ‘doing good’ from the periphery to the center (Devex

Q&A: What A Year Without Polio in Nigeria Means (USAID Impact

More Than a Meal (Policy Innovations

Right things, right places, right targets — right now. Five global health experts call on PEPfAR to establish new treatment and prevention targets. (Devex

The ebola vaccine we dared to dream of is here. (Guardian

High Drama, UN-Style (UN Dispatch

Security Council Resolution on Airlines Disaster Debases U.N. Charter (IPS


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]