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September 1, 2017

Friday, September 1, 2017

Pakistan responds to major flooding

Rain, rain, go away. This year’s monsoon season has been particularly brutal for people across South Asia. Already 1,200 people have died from floods in Bangladesh, India, and Nepal. This week Karachi and Lahore, the largest cities in Pakistan, are facing heavy flooding, and rescue teams are working to keep the death toll from rising.

Climate scientists and activists are drawing links between global warming and the torrential rains in South Asia and in other parts of the world.

Farmers in Ghana protest chief’s takeover of farmlands

They want their land back. Cocoa farmers in the Ejisu-Juaben district of Ghana’s southern region of Ashanti staged a protest on Thursday to demand their land rights. They risk losing their cocoa farms and homes as their chief has sold their land to private developers. The chief has refuted their petition, but the farmers say they will stand up for their livelihoods and their rights.

Musician in Atlanta spreads peace with pianos

“Music can change people, and people can change the world.” Putting this mantra into action, Syrian-American musician Malek Jandali uses music to bring people together. Each year people from across Atlanta, Ga., join his organization, Pianos for Peace, in painting pianos and placing them in parks and public spaces across the city. The pianos are later donated to schools, hospitals, and senior homes. Drawing people from diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds, the project has helped transform their perceptions of one another.

Jandali’s career hasn’t progressed without risks. In 2011 his elderly parents were brutally beaten by Syrian government forces because of his music and activism. Jandali hopes to continue channeling music into a positive force for peace.