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News in the Humanosphere: Paris climate change negotiations heat up

Two thorny issues have been dividing rich and poor nations, namely climate finance and what is known as loss and damage. It is already apparent that the question of how industrialized countries are going to help developing nations adapt to global warming impacts and leapfrog dirty energy technologies is the biggest sticking point in these talks. Making things more difficult, it seems, is a proposal by some industrialized nations, including the U.S., that would have developing countries contribute to climate finance. (Mashable

Climate conference hacked...Anonymous, the hacktivist movement, hacked the website of the summit organizers, the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, and posted names, phone numbers, usernames, email addresses, and secret questions and answers onto an anonymous publishing site. Anonymous claimed the attack was an act of protest against the arrest of protesters on a climate march in Paris on Sunday. Climate activists organizing a peaceful protest say that the demonstration was hijacked by a small group of anarchists who clashed with police. (Guardian

Yet another MSF hospital bombed…An airstrike carried out by the Saudi-led coalition has hit a clinic in southern Yemen run by MSF, wounding 9 people, including two Doctors Without Borders (MSF) staff. (MSF

Guilty verdict…Oscar Pistorius was convicted of murder on Thursday by a South African appeals court that described the once-glittering story of the double-amputee Olympian and Reeva Steenkamp, the girlfriend he killed in his home in 2013, as “a human tragedy of Shakespearean proportions.” (AP

Google goes big on renewables…Google is nearly doubling the amount of renewable energy feeding its massive data centers that enable more than 1 billion people to search for information, watch video clips and communicate virtually anytime they want. (AP


More than 100,000 people uprooted by violence and living in camps in northeast Nigeria are set to return home soon, but many fear for their safety and ability to rebuild their lives, aid agency staff said on Thursday. (TRF

In a not-so-subtle rebuke of his predecessors, Tanzania’s new President John Magufuli has displayed unusual zeal for austerity and impatience with corruption and waste since taking office a month ago. (AFP

Three Tanzanian universities are offering a new course on female genital mutilation to train health-care professionals how to deal with victims of the harmful practice that is still widespread although illegal. (Reuters

French army officers have denied allegations by rights groups that the country’s peacekeeping force knowingly failed to prevent the killing of hundreds of Tutsis in Rwanda in 1994. (Al Jazeera

Eleven people, including seven soldiers, were killed in clashes with 15 unidentified gunmen in two military camps in Ivory Coast near the border with Liberia, a U.N. source with knowledge of the events said. (Reuters

Malawi has rolled out its first batch of ethanol-fueled cars as the government works to transition the country to a cheaper, greener alternative to imported fuel. (VOA

South Africa and China signed deals worth $6.5 billion during talks between the two countries, President Jacob Zuma said on Wednesday, adding that relations between the two nations were at their “best ever.” (Reuters

Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari will ask China’s president at a summit this week to fund rail and power projects urgently needed to diversify an economy hit hard by a plunge in oil prices, a spokesman said. (Reuters


Over 1,500 migrants have been rescued off the Libyan coast in seven separate operations, the Italian navy said Thursday, after a break in bad weather sparked fresh attempts at the perilous Mediterranean crossing. (AFP

Israel on Thursday announced the arrests of several Jewish extremists with possible connections to an arson attack that killed a Palestinian toddler and his two parents in July – moving closer to solving a case that has enraged Palestinians and been a key factor fueling a two-month wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence. (AP

A draft law on rights for disabled people that has gone before the Moroccan parliament has been criticized by civil society groups for perpetuating outdated notions of disability. (Guardian


The Indian military evacuated more than 2,000 residents stranded in the southern state of Tamil Nadu on Thursday as the death toll from flooding rose to 269 after the heaviest cloudburst in over a century. (Reuters

Thai police said on Thursday that suspects wanted in connection with a bomb that ripped through a Bangkok shrine, killing 20 people, have been arrested abroad and that Thailand was in the process of requesting their extradition. (Reuters

Afghan officials scrambled Thursday to establish whether Taliban supremo Mullah Akhtar Mansour was still alive, after sources said he was “critically” wounded in a firefight following a bitter argument with commanders in the divided militant movement. (AFP

A Cambodian court sentenced an unlicensed medical practitioner to 25 years in prison Thursday after finding him responsible for infecting more than 100 villagers with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, by reusing unsanitized syringes. At least 10 of the infected people have died. (AP

China’s economy will grow slightly faster than expected this year at 6.9 percent and its shift to fostering services and private consumption is helping to support regional growth, the Asian Development Bank said Thursday. (AP

India will force all commercial trucks more than 15 years old off the road from April and is reviewing how it checks vehicle emissions, a senior transport official said, as the government tries to curb soaring urban air pollution. (Reuters

Pakistan refused to allow about 30 migrants deported from Greece to get off a plane at Islamabad on Thursday, a week after talks with the European Union to settle a dispute over forced repatriations. (Reuters

The Seychelles began three days of voting on Thursday in a presidential election in which the incumbent’s bid for a third term has been challenged by a rival who says economic growth on the Indian Ocean archipelago has favored the rich. (Reuters

The Americas

Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter said Thursday that he is opening all jobs in combat units to women, a landmark decision that ends a three-year period of research with a number of firsts for female service members and bitter debate at times about how women should be integrated. (WaPo

Brazil’s first female president faces impeachment…Added to the list of corruption scandals and low approval numbers, Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff now must fight an impeachment effort launched by a political foe who heads Congress’ lower house. (AP

Members of the U.S. African diaspora hope African refugees will also benefit from the U.S. pledge to accept more refugees. However, there is one hurdle that keeps Africans in the U.S. from speaking as one voice. (VOA

Plenty of countries have damaged or failing health systems. Few are like the Venezuelan. (BBC

U.S. citizen Lori Berenson, convicted in Peru of helping Marxist insurgents, finally left Peru for good early Thursday after 20 years of detention and parole in the South American nation. (VOA

…and the rest

Negotiators charged with saving humanity from a climate catastrophe on Thursday unveiled a new draft deal riddled with conflicting proposals after three days of talks in Paris, sparking deep concern among activists. (AFP

A U.N. deal on climate change in Paris should fire the starting gun for a global push on sustainable development in 2016, with no time to lose in shifting to greener, more resilient economies, the head of the U.N. development agency said. (Reuters

World governments have been urged to tackle air pollution in poorer countries by greening cities, reducing traffic and adopting better diets, and told that this will also rein in climate change, which global health specialists estimate will cause at least 250,000 additional deaths a year by 2030. (Guardian

France’s far-right National Front appears to be on course for an historic breakthrough in regional elections this weekend, with the country still traumatized by last month’s Paris terror attacks. (AFP


AIDS Related Deaths of Asian Teens are Up By Over 100%. Are Dating Apps to Blame? (UN Dispatch

What Place for South African Coal in a Low-Carbon World? (DW

Can peace deal bring relief to south Libya’s ‘Chinese camp’? (IRIN

Decolonization should be about appreciating difference, not despising it (The Conversation

What Next for the African Standby Force? (ISS

Poor people living with disabilities are counting on better data for better lives (Guardian

Will #COP21 negotiators tackle land rights issues? (Devex

How Burkina Faso ensured its freest and fairest elections ever (African Arguments

Factbox: Major shootings in the United States (Reuters

HIV drugs for babies slashes breastfeeding risk (SciDevNet

Britain has a new aid strategy. But has it got its priorities right? (Guardian

How the Chan Zuckerberg initiative could influence global giving (Devex



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