UN seeks $51.5b for ‘shockingly high’ humanitarian aid needs

       

A girl watches as Afghan burqa-clad health workers administer polio vaccine drops to a child during a vaccination campaign in Bihsud district of Nangarhar province on October 17, 2022. (PHOTO / AFP) GENEVA / NEW YORK – The United Nations and partners on Thursday appealed for a record $51.5 billion in aid money for 2023, with tens of millions of additional people expected to need assistance, …

Zimbabwean top official warns of COVID-19 resurgence

       

A man is tested for COVID-19 at a private health center in Harare, Zimbabwe, Feb 3, 2022. (TSVANGIRAYI MUKWAZHI / AP) HARARE / MOSCOW / OTTAWA – Zimbabwe's COVID-19 response chief coordinator, Agnes Mahomva, has warned that the country is not yet out of danger of a resurgence of the pandemic, amid concerns that people are getting more complacent following a general decline in the …

Climate justice gets harder as world population passes 8 billion

       

In this photograph taken on October 31, 2022, people walk through a crowded commercial street in Chennai. India is projected to see an explosion in its urban population in the coming decades, but its cities already cannot cope and climate change will make living conditions harsher still. (ARUN SANKAR / AFP) SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt – The world population surged past 8 billion people on Tuesday, …

Climate disasters put plight of displaced in COP27 focus

       

A Somali woman and children carry water at a camp for displaced people on the outskirts of Dollow, Somalia on Sept 20, 2022. (JEROME DELAY / FILE / AP) SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt – Issack Hassan lives in a migrant camp in Baidoa city in Somalia – one of more than a million people displaced since January after five successive failed rainy seasons. With Somalia in …

Nineteen dead in Egypt after bus falls into canal

       

People walk past a damaged minibus that was pulled out of a water canal following a crash in al-Dayris village near the Nile Delta city of Mansoura in the Dakahlia governorate, some 120Km north of the capital, on Nov 12, 2022. (KHALED DESOUKI / AFP) CAIRO – Nineteen people were killed and six others were injured when a bus fell into a canal in northern …

Venezuela blasts EU’s decision to renew sanctions

       

The shadows of synthetic macaws are cast on the pavement backdropped by a mural of a macaw as pedestrians wearing protective face masks walk past, in the Petare neighborhood of Caracas, Venezuela, June 5, 2020.(ARIANA CUBILLOS / AP) CARACAS – The Venezuelan government on Saturday lambasted the decision of the European Union (EU) to renew sanctions against the South American country for another year. "With …

Drought highlights climate woes

       

East Africa among regions hit hardest, as hopes pinned on Egypt talks Maasai women gather to watch Maasai morans, or warriors, take part in an Olng'esherr ceremony at the foot of the Maparasha Hills, near Kajiado, in Kenya, Sept 23, 2020. (PHOTO / AP) With the desperation etched on her face, Elizabeth Kanini, a villager from eastern Kenya, has long endured the ravages of a …

Suicide bomber ‘kills over a dozen in Somali capital’

       

In this file photo dated Oct 30, 2022, a local resident looks at debris from a destroyed buildings in Mogadishu on Oct 30, 2022 after an car bombing targeted the education ministry on Oct 29, 2022. (HASSAN ALI ELMI / AFP) MOGADISHU – A suicide bomber blew himself up at the entrance of a military training camp in the southern part of Mogadishu on Saturday …

Over 14.8m US children infected with COVID-19

       

People make their way through Times Square, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Manhattan, New York City, US, May 07, 2021. (EDUARDO MUNOZ / REUTERS) LOS ANGELES / NEW YORK / MOSCOW – Over 14.8 million children in the United States have tested positive for COVID-19 since the onset of the pandemic, according to the latest report by the American Academy of Pediatrics and …

Chad climate disaster leaves record 2.1m people hungry

       

A woman holds a dead fish at the Kalambari refugee camp 30km near N'Djamena on July 14, 2022. (AURELIE BAZZARA-KIBANGULA / AFP) N'DJAMENA – Severe drought followed by the worst floods in 30 years have led to rocketing food prices and left a record 2.1 million people in Chad acutely hungry, according to United Nations agencies. As a result of the climate disaster, 10 percent …

US: COVID-19 booster program runs well, should pick up

       

Patients wait to receive a COVID-19 vaccine booster shot at a mobile vaccination station on 59th Street below Central Park on Dec 2, 2021, in New York. (JOHN MINCHILLO / AP) WASHINGTON / MOSCOW – The White House expects the rate of vaccination in its fall booster campaign to pick up over the coming weeks, and its COVID response coordinator Ashish Jha on Friday characterized …

US govt: COVID-19 booster work runs well, should pick up

       

Patients wait to receive a COVID-19 vaccine booster shot at a mobile vaccination station on 59th Street below Central Park on Dec 2, 2021, in New York. (JOHN MINCHILLO / AP) WASHINGTON / MOSCOW – The White House expects the rate of vaccination in its fall booster campaign to pick up over the coming weeks, and its COVID response coordinator Ashish Jha on Friday characterized …

At least 15 migrants dead in shipwreck off Greek’s Lesbos

       

Migrants sit on the deck of a coast guard vessel upon their arrival at Mytilene port, on the northeastern Aegean Sea island of Lesbos, Greece on June 22, 2022. (PANAGIOTIS BALASKAS / AP) ATHENS – At least 15 people died when their vessel sank off the Greek island of Lesbos in the central Aegean Sea early on Thursday, in the second maritime disaster involving migrants …

CDC: Some 3.2m Americans got updated COVID jabs last week

       

A healthcare worker holds a vial of the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine at a pop-up vaccination site operated by SOMOS Community Care during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in Manhattan in New York City, New York, US, on Jan 29, 2021. (MIKE SEGAR / REUTERS) New York / HELSINKI / MOSCOW – Around 3.2 million people in the United States received updated COVID-19 booster shots over …

US study: COVID-19 raises risk of long-term brain injury

       

Medical workers treat patients in the COVID-19 ward at the US Department of Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare system campus and medical center in West Roxbury, Massachusetts on Jan 11, 2022. (JOSEPH PREZIOSO / AFP) CHICAGO / GENEVA / SANTIAGO – People who had COVID-19 are at higher risk for a host of brain injuries a year later compared with people who were never infected by …

EMA:Take whatever COVID-19 booster you can get

       

This file photo taken on June 11, 2021 shows the entrance of the European Medicines Agency headquarters in Amsterdam. (FRANCOIS WALSCHAERTS / AFP) People in Europe should take whatever COVID-19 booster is available to them in the coming months, Emer Cooke, Executive Director of the European Medicines Agency, said in a Reuters Next Newsmaker interview ahead of an expected autumn rise in infections. Apart from …

UN report: Modern slavery on the rise as crises fuel poverty

       

A former worker of Japanese company Furukawa takes pafrt in a protest against alleged modern slavery outside the Ombudsman Office in Quito, Ecuador on Dec 2, 2021, on the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery. (RODRIGO  BUENDIA / AFP) GENEVA – The number of people forced to work or in a marriage against their will has surged in recent years to around 50 million …

UK’s new PM faces 80s playlist: recession, unrest, inflation

       

Contender to become the country's next Prime minister and leader of the Conservative party British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss cheers prior to the UEFA Women's Euro 2022 final football match between England and Germany at the Wembley stadium, in London, on July 31, 2022. (JUSTIN TALLIS / AFP) RUNCORN, England – Britain's prime minister in waiting Liz Truss models herself on Margaret Thatcher, judging by …

Climate, conflicts raise stakes in hungry world

       

Food concerns deepen as 345m face acute shortages in UN famine warning This Nov 19, 2018 photo shows 10 year-old Ghazi Saleh lying on a bed at Al-Mudhafar hospital in Taez, Yemen.(MARZOOQ AL-JABIRY / AFP) Millions of people struggling for food every day are seeing their hopes dimmed by soaring grain prices and tight supplies amid the impact of climate change and Western sanctions on …