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News in the Humanosphere: Syrian cease-fire in the works post-Paris attack

A man walks between destroyed buildings after heavy shelling by regime forces in Aleppo, Syria on August 28, 2014. (Photo by Karam Almasri/NurPhoto/Sipa USA)

It was a very different G-20 meeting in Turkey than was originally planned, particularly for U.S. President Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin. The two agreed on the need for United Nations talks, a cease-fire and a transitional government in Syria, said one U.S. official said. The strategy echoed a plan for Syria already forged by diplomats at talks in Vienna the previous day, but “it still appeared to mark a perceptible thaw in the icy relations between the former Cold War foes and their leaders,” said reports. (ABC-Australia

France bombs Islamic State stronghold: French warplanes pounded the Islamic State’s stronghold in Syria’s Raqqa on Sunday, destroying a command post and a training camp, the defense ministry said. “The first target destroyed was used by Daesh (another Arabic acronym for the group) as a command post, jihadist recruitment center and arms and munitions depot. The second held a terrorist training camp,” a ministry statement said. (AFP

This BBC page is a good source for Live Updates about the unfolding situation in France:

Major protests in South Korea: Korean police fired water cannons and tear gas at thousands of protesters shouting for President Park Geun-hye’s resignation while marching toward her office in Seoul in the largest anti-government demonstration in several years. (NYT


U.S. President Obama called on leaders and citizens in Burundi to end violence that has killed at least 240 people, in a video statement on Saturday. (Reuters

Niger opposition leader Hama Amadou was arrested when he flew in to the capital on Saturday as security forces blocked off the airport, a year after he fled the country when sought by investigators probing a child trafficking ring. (Reuters

An anti-corruption group established by Kenya’s government and the private sector is expected to soon present a report to President Uhuru Kenyatta, following concerns of endemic graft in public institutions, according to presidential spokesman Manoah Esipisu. (VOA

The Islamic State

The United States has carried out a fresh delivery of ammunition to fighters from the Syrian Arab Coalition battling Islamic State in northern Syria, pushing ahead with a strategy that initially unnerved ally Turkey, a U.S. official told Reuters on Sunday. (Reuters

A mass grave believed to hold the bodies of dozens of women executed by the Islamic State group was found Saturday in Iraq’s Sinjar, where Kurdish forces are clearing bombs the jihadists left. (AFP

Members of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, which was brutally attacked by the Islamic State group, looted and burned Muslim homes in Sinjar after its recapture from the jihadists, witnesses said Sunday. (AFP

German President Joachim Gauck said Sunday the world is confronted with a “new type of war” perpetrated by terrorists bent on killing those who refuse to follow their “barbaric ideology”. (AFP


Yemeni officials say a rare cyclone that hit the country’s remote island of Socotra early this month has killed 18 people. (AP

A group of Sudanese migrants were on Sunday caught up in the crossfire of a gun battle between Egyptian security forces and Bedouin smugglers as they were about to illegally enter Israel from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, security and hospital officials said. Fifteen of the migrants were killed and eight were wounded in the crossfire, they said. (NYT

The Israeli government on Sunday approved a proposal to allow the immigration of thousands of Ethiopians claiming Jewish descent, two years after saying that none remained there. (AFP

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on Sunday he welcomed the renewed sense of urgency to find a solution to the civil war in Syria after the Paris attacks, adding the world had a “rare moment” of diplomatic opportunity to end the violence. (Reuters

A defense lawyer in the Gulf Arab country of Bahrain says a court has ordered 12 Shiites to life in prison and stripped them of their citizenship on charges of forming a terrorist group and targeting police with explosive devices. (AP

Saudi police say they have seized more than 28 tons of hashish and some 22 million amphetamine pills over the past 12 months. (AP


The death toll from an east China landslide has risen to 21, with 16 people still missing, local authorities said Sunday. (Xinhua

Nepal’s prime minister has asked neighboring India to lift an “undeclared blockade,” saying the Himalayan nation is facing a severe fuel shortage and trouble obtaining medicine and food supplies blocked at the border. (AP

The Pakistan Council of Scientific and Industrial Research has warned about rapidly depleting water resources in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as well as in the nearby Federally Administered Tribal Areas. (IPS

Wielding an overwhelming mandate from Myanmar’s voters, Aung San Suu Kyi has power in her sights after a quarter century of democratic struggle against the army, but analysts say building bridges with former military foes is vital to her success. (AFP

Iranian women who fail to wear the veil when driving will have their cars impounded for a week and are likely to be fined, police warned Sunday. (AFP

The Americas

The collapse of two dams at a Brazilian mine has cut off drinking water for quarter of a million people and saturated waterways downstream with dense orange sediment that could wreck the ecosystem for years to come. (Reuters

Brazil: Topless, with slogans scrawled on their bare skin, feminist protesters in Rio made a colorful sight Saturday, yet their worries about horrific violence against women were deadly serious. (AFP

A foster son of President Desi Bouterse has been arrested for his alleged ties to a gang involved in a botched armed robbery that resulted in two people being killed and five wounded, Suriname police said. (AP

…and the rest

Leaders of the world’s 20 biggest economies will agree on Monday that migration is a global problem that must be addressed in a coordinated way, in a diplomatic coup for Europe and Turkey, a draft communique showed on Sunday. (Reuters

Cyprus’ foreign minister says heightened security measures have in the last year thwarted at least 10 people from using the ethnically divided island as a way station to Syria. (AP

Police in the Turkish Mediterranean city of Antalya detained dozens of people Sunday during a series of protests denouncing a G-20 summit that is under way in a nearby seaside resort, although the demonstrations were mostly peaceful. (AP

A massive demonstration planned by environmental activists for the eve of this month’s U.N. climate summit in Paris is in doubt as organizers weigh the security risks, and the propriety, of gathering in huge numbers in a city where attacks killed 129 people. (Reuters


Did you know this presidential hopeful is a foreign aid supporter? (Humanosphere

Will New Two-Child Policy Lift China’s Economy? (VOA

The Debate Is On: To Deworm Or Not To Deworm? (Goats and Soda

Can international law meet the challenges of today’s conflicts? (Guardian

How Corruption Politics Facilitated Hungary’s Response to the Refugee Crisis (Global Anticorruption Blog

How do we respond to democracy’s ‘rollback’ crisis? (Devex

Why being scooped by Piketty is no bad thing for Oxfam (but what will the government of India think?) (From Poverty to Power

What everyone gets wrong about the link between climate change and violence (Vox

Paris attacks: closing migration routes into France won’t stop terrorism – resisting xenophobia might (The Conversation


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