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Thursday, 19 April

03:00

20 killed, 33 000 displaced as floods continue affecting Kenya "IndyWatch Feed Allcommunity"

More than 20 people were killed and 33 000 displaced from their homes over the past 10 days as floods continue affecting Kenya. According to FloodList, this is the third wave of flooding in the country since March this year. At least 15 people died and hundreds...... Read more

Massive flood hits Martinique after 250 mm (9.8 in) of rain in 6 hours "IndyWatch Feed Allcommunity"

Thousands of people were trapped in buildings and vehicles after extreme rainfall event accompanied by lightning and hail hit the Caribbean island of Martinique on April 16 and 17, 2018. According to Meteo France, Saint-Joseph recorded 175 mm (6.88 inches) of rain...... Read more

Major dust storm sweeps over Yazd province, Iran "IndyWatch Feed Allcommunity"

A massive dust storm swept over Yazd province in central Iran on April 16, 2018. Hadi Hadinasab, the director-general of the crisis management department of Yazd governorate, said the storm has fortunately left no casualties or damages. The dense cloud dramatically...... Read more

Its time to confront the collusion between the palm oil industry and politicians that is driving Indonesias deforestation crisis (commentary) "IndyWatch Feed Allcommunity"

Two decades on from the fall of the Suharto dictatorship, Indonesias transition to democracy is regarded as a global success story. But lurking beneath the surface is an ugly truth. A now irrefutable body of evidence shows that regional elections, for the town mayors, district chiefs and provincial governors who hold huge sway over the lives of citizens in a decentralized state, are overwhelmingly corrupted by dark money. Political scientists, civil society observers and enforcement agencies have documented the race to the bottom as candidates compete to outspend one another, employing an array of nefarious and illegal methods collectively referred to as money politics. Indonesia Corruption Watch, a non-profit that monitors elections across the country, has described regional elections as brutal and shambolic. Many informed observers believe the phenomenon is growing worse. This system pushes to the top of the pile the candidates with the greatest tolerance for the dark arts of money politics and the ability to find wealthy backers. A study released earlier this year by the KPK, Indonesias anti-graft agency, found the majority of candidates are forced to make Faustian bargains with private interests to generate the funds required to mount a serious challenge. The donors want something in return: government contracts, jobs, policy influence and, above all, business licenses. Across much of rural Indonesia, the most valuable commodity these corrupt politicians have to offer is land. The largest demand for that land, meanwhile, is for the development of giant plantations. Predominantly to produce palm oil, a

Legal abortion in Argentina? A long shot is suddenly within reach (Daniel Politi) "IndyWatch Feed Allcommunity"

18/04/2018 - BUENOS AIRES Luca Bulat, a 19-year-old medical student, was dancing on the steps of the congressional palace in Buenos Aires as she looked out on a crowd of abortion rights demonstrators ...

14 killed after severe floods hit Dar es Salaam, Tanzania "IndyWatch Feed Allworld"

Heavy rains that hit Tanzania over the past couple of days caused buildings to collapse and widespread flooding in Dar es Salaam, a major city and commercial port on Tanzanias Indian Ocean coast. A statement released by Tanzania Meteorological Agency (TMA)...... Read more

Ghosts in the Machine: The land deals behind the downfall of Indonesias top judge "IndyWatch Feed Allworld"

(Baca dalam Bahasa Indonesia.) Prologue: Jakarta, 2013 It was long after the close of business when Indonesias highest-ranking judge stepped out of his official residence in Jakarta to greet some guests, one night in October 2013. It had been a busy few months for Akil Mochtar. In his capacity as chief justice of the Constitutional Court, he had been called upon to preside over a flurry of cases brought by candidates who had recently taken part in regional elections. Those who felt they had been cheated out of victory through bribes, vote tampering or any of a number of ruses used to gain an edge in close-fought contests could challenge the result in Akils court. Akil was working late because he had a lucrative side job. By day he fulfilled his official role, running one of the nations most trusted institutions while presenting the face of an impartial judge. By night he peddled his verdicts, negotiating with litigants who sought to buy his decisions for cash. Akil had become a part of the corrupt system he was supposed to police. Waiting for Akil, sitting on a bench next to the manicured bushes on his terrace, was a businessman with four envelopes underneath his shirt stuffed with a total of $250,000 in U.S. and Singapore currency. He was accompanied by an austere woman wearing a hijab and spectacles, a member of parliament who had brokered the deal about to go down. But as soon as Akil stepped out of his front door, more

Boom and bust cycle of deep-sea trawling unsustainable, study finds "IndyWatch Feed Allworld"

Fishing in the remote waters of the deep sea isnt easy. But with technological advancements, fishing boats have pushed farther and deeper into the oceans, frequently using bottom trawl gear giant fishing nets weighted down with metal attachments that drag along the seafloor to scoop up huge amounts of fish from depths of up to 2,000 meters (6,560 feet). Deep-sea trawling, however, can be extremely destructive for fish populations, while providing minimal economic benefits, researchers have found. Catches from deep-sea trawling are also grossly underreported, the researchers conclude in a new study published in Frontiers in Marine Science. Considering that the search for fishable resources, though partly buffered by some recent regulatory positions is progressively moving deeper and deeper, the picture that emerges from this study is definitely worrying, Antonio Pusceddu, professor of ecology at the University of Cagliari, Italy, who was not involved in the study, told Mongabay. Pacific sleeper shark. Image by NOAA. Bottom-trawling in the deep sea likely unsustainable Between 1950 and 2015, bottom trawls caught about 25 million tons of 72 fish species at depths greater than 400 meters (1,310 feet), the researchers found. Many of these fisheries followed a boom and bust pattern, with fish harvests first thriving, then quickly crashing. This shows that deep-sea bottom-trawled fisheries are not sustainable, lead author Lissette Victorero, a doctoral student at the National Oceanography Centre, U.K., told Mongabay. Most of them last only a decade or two. Additionally, this cycle is so rapid that the management and

The search for truth in the rubble of Douma and one doctors doubts over the chemical attack (Robert Fisk) "IndyWatch Feed Allworld"

18/04/2018 - Robert Fisk visits the Syria clinic at the centre of a global crisis        Syria civil war: Footage shows children treated following chemical weapons attack ...

Why have plans to pull US troops out of Syria been shelved? (Abdelbari Atwan ) "IndyWatch Feed Allworld"

18/04/2018 - Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the United Nations and one of the Trump administrations hawks, announced on Sunday that it had decided to shelve plans to pull US troops out of Syria. This means that ...

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