February 24, 2017

Friday, February 24, 2017

Horn of Africa drought affects 23 million

The persistent lack of rain in the Horn of Africa is exacerbating drought and increasing 22.9 million people’s need of food assistance. Women and girls are disproportionately affected, as they must travel longer distances to find water. They often go early in the morning or late in the evening, exposing them to a greater risk of sexual violence and exploitation.

Local ActionAid staff in Kenya and Somaliland have distributed food and water to more than 100,000 people in drought affected areas. In Ethiopia, ActionAid is providing long-term support and scaling up its emergency response.

Standing Rock Sioux and allies are forced to evacuate

Fires dotted the Sacred Stone Camp on Wednesday as members of the Standing Rock Sioux and allies set their tents ablaze before vacating the hub of the #NoDAPL movement. A few dozen people remained onsite after the Wednesday afternoon deadline set by North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum. Forty-seven of those who stayed were arrested.

Last week, environmental law nonprofit Earthjustice filed a motion on behalf of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe to question the legality of the executive order that approved the completion of the Dakota Access pipeline. The Tribe is organizing a national march on Washington on March 10.

Free detainees: Syrian women outside UN peace talks

Peace talks resumed at the United Nations on Thursday between the Syrian government and its main opposition group, the Higher Negotiations Committee. Outside the UN headquarters, five Syrian women met with Staffan de Mistura, UN Special Envoy for Syria, to call for the release of political prisoners – their sons, husbands, and brothers who have been unlawfully detained by the Syrian government over the course of the six-year civil war. You can read some of their stories here.