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News on the Humanosphere: Paris climate deal scores win with EU ratification, nears tipping point

Eiffel Tower in Paris. Wikipedia/Moyen Brenn (

On Sunday, India formally ratified the Paris Agreement. And on Tuesday, the European Union did the same. Now, in the coming days several individual European countries are expected to ratify the agreement which will put the agreement past the required threshold for entry-into-force of 55 countries representing 55 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions. This is a big deal. It means that the Paris Agreement will come to life years earlier than was originally expected, which in turn means the targets and ambitions embedded in the Paris agreement will start having an effect sooner rather than later. (UN Dispatch

A big day in the race for the next U.N. Secretary-General…The Security Council holds another straw poll in the race to replace Ban Ki-moon, whose term expires at the end of the year. This will be the fifth of these straw polls. But crucially, the poll being held today will distinguish the preferences of the five veto wielding members of the council from the ten other ballots. This means we may know which candidates face veto threats. You can expect many candidates to drop out of the race after today. (Security Council Report

Stat of the day: Ten countries accounting for 2.5 percent of world GDP are hosting more than half the world’s refugees, Amnesty International said Tuesday as it slammed what it called the selfishness of wealthy nations. (AFP


The U.N. said Tuesday a second peacekeeper had died following an attack on a base in northeastern Mali, as it reported serious failings in its most dangerous ongoing mission. (AFP

Zimbabwe’s High Court on Tuesday upheld a monthlong police ban on protests in the capital on the grounds that this was necessary to preserve peace, a lawyer representing opposition activists said. (VOA

Sudan condemned on Tuesday a U.S. law that would allow families of victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks to sue governments for damages, saying it undermined state sovereignty and could provoke reciprocal legislation. (Reuters

Burundi’s government has dismissed a U.N. decision to set up a commission of inquiry to identify perpetrators of killings and torture, saying it was based on a one-sided account of events in the African nation. (Reuters

The U.N. peacekeeping chief on Tuesday urged Sudan to help shed light on allegations of chemical weapons attacks in Darfur, but Russia said the claims must not be taken seriously. (AFP

Zimbabwe is losing at least $1 billion annually to corruption, with police and local government officials among the worst offenders, Transparency International said in a report on Tuesday. (Reuters

Ethiopian police have arrested a blogger who criticized the government, especially its handling of the ongoing protests in the Oromia and Amhara regions. (AP

In Burkina Faso, South Africa and Kenya, water utilities are finding innovative ways to reach the worse-off and remain financially sustainable. (Guardian

South African police have used tear gas, rubber bullets and stun grenades against students protesting for free education in Johannesburg. (Al Jazeera


The United States won’t abandon its pursuit of peace in Syria after suspending direct U.S.-Russian talks on a ceasefire, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday, even as he announced no new strategy to replace diplomatic efforts with Russia. (AP

Dozens of emaciated children are fighting for their lives in Yemen’s hospital wards, as fears grow that civil war and a sea blockade that has lasted for months are creating famine conditions in the Arabian peninsula’s poorest country. (Guardian

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has condemned Israeli plans to build a new settlement and establish an industrial zone in the West Bank. (AP

The custodian of Catholic sites in the Holy Land and the head of the Franciscan Order called Tuesday for a “safe zone” to be created in Syria’s Aleppo as fighting there raged. (AFP

The Palestinian government delayed municipal elections for up to four months Tuesday with Fatah and Hamas so far unable to overcome divisions to organize their first competitive polls in a decade. (AP

The Syrian government has yet to respond to the United Nations proposed plan for life-saving aid convoys in Syria during the month of October, a U.N. spokesman said on Tuesday, noting that the last “cross line” convoy was on Sept. 25. (Reuters

The United Nations human rights chief told Russia on Tuesday that air strikes on civilian targets in the Syrian city of Aleppo may amount to crimes against humanity which could be brought before the International Criminal Court. (Reuters

Morocco’s Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane said his ruling Islamist party will advance economic reforms including further rationalization of subsidies sought by international lenders if it wins this week’s parliamentary election. (Reuters

Medical officials say at least 10 civilians have been killed in a rocket attack in the war-torn Yemeni city of Taiz, including children. (AP


World powers convened in Brussels on Tuesday to raise billions more dollars for Afghanistan to keep the country running until 2020, but hopes for a new start to peace talks were overshadowed by a surge in Taliban insurgent violence. (Reuters

Afghanistan will face a grim winter of starvation and death on its eastern frontier, particularly among women and children, unless donors urgently find the money to fund emergency relief for more than half a million refugees who are returning from Pakistan, a United Nations official has warned. (Guardian

Firebrand Philippine leader Rodrigo Duterte told U.S. President Barack Obama to “go to hell” Tuesday, as he threatened to end his nation’s decades-old alliance with the United States in favor of China and Russia. (AFP

As Thailand’s rainy season peaks, the government is taking steps to avoid a repeat of devastating floods in 2011 that killed hundreds of people and cost billions of dollars, Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha said on Tuesday. (Reuters

A court in Kyrgyzstan has begun a retrial for an ethnic Uzbek journalist jailed for life for stirring up ethnic hatred in a case which has drawn international criticism. (AP

The Americas

If Venezuela has become dangerous for the healthy, it is now deadly for those who fall ill. One in three people admitted to public hospitals last year died, the government reports. (AP

Colombia’s government and Marxist guerrillas went back to the drawing board in Havana on Tuesday after a peace deal they painstakingly negotiated over four years was rejected in a shock referendum result. (Reuters

The Supreme Court seemed skeptical Tuesday of a former Puerto Rico senator’s bid to avoid a second trial on bribery charges. (AP

…and the rest

Turkey on Tuesday suspended 12,800 police officers over alleged links to an Islamic preacher accused of masterminding the failed July coup, and cut broadcasts of a pro-Kurdish television channel under its controversial state of emergency. (AP

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange vowed Tuesday to publish new “significant” documents related to the U.S. presidential election ahead of the Nov. 8 vote, as the online leaking platform celebrated its 10th birthday in defiant mood. (AFP

Geneva’s main hospital appeared to burst into flames on Monday night in a simulation to commemorate the deadly U.S. airstrike on a Kunduz hospital in Afghanistan a year ago and to condemn Syrian and Russian bombing of health centers in Aleppo. (Reuters

Hungary’s prime minister announced Tuesday he will propose amendments to the constitution banning the mass settlement of migrants without parliament’s approval. (AP

Several hundred refugees set off from central Belgrade on Tuesday morning and headed for the Hungarian border, holding handwritten banners and chanting demands for open borders, Reuters witnesses said. (Reuters

British public relations tycoon Tim (Lord) Bell is setting up a new venture with global ambitions. But its name, Sans Frontières Associates, is putting a well-known medical charity on edge. (IRIN


The Guardian view on the UN secretary general: a real leader is needed (Guardian

With Hurricane Bearing Down on Haiti, Another Reminder that Climate Change is a Global Injustice. (UN Dispatch

Colombia must keep pushing for peace (CNN

Timeline of major storms to hit Haiti in recent history (AP

‘Whatever the army saw, they destroyed’: looting and loss in Sri Lanka’s civil war (Guardian


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