Warzone News September 2, 2015

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Warzone News: Week of August 2, 2015

Resource of the Week: Understanding the difference between a migrant, an asylum seeker, and a refugee.

In Afghanistan, 2 NATO soldiers were killed in the south. The Taliban regained control in a province in the Helmand district. Pakistani forces killed 14 suspected militants in tribal areas of the country.

In the Central African Republic, a militia group has released 163 children. A council has barred former members of a transitional government from running in upcoming elections, in a decision that is likely to receive criticism. The council also adopted a new constitution, which will be up for a referendum in October.

In Colombia, tensions with Venezuela are rising after a shootout between smugglers and troops in Venezuela.

In Israel and Palestine, reports that living conditions remain difficult in Gaza with warmer weather and power shortages. Israel carried out a strike on a Hamas hub in Gaza in response to a rocked launched into Israel. Palestine, considered a non-member state of the UN, is looking to fly it’s flag alongside full members, and Israel is opposing the action.

In Iraq, Kurds have taken control of a village in the north previously held by ISIS and more accusations of chemical weapons use by ISIS. An article in the New Yorker reflects on how the war in Iraq has impacted the rise of ISIS.

In Libya, peace talks are expected to be in their “final stages.” The migrant boat crisis is particularly severe in Libya, with 50 found dead in a boat and another 200 killed when a boat sank.

In Mali, despite being a relatively small proportion of the population, fighting among Tuaregs is threatening efforts toward peace and stability.

In Myanmar, opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi expresses hesitation about peace deal on behalf of rebel groups.

In Nepal, protests against the interim government and a new constitution have left at least 20 protesters dead.

In Nigeria, Cameroon sends 15,000 Nigerians who had fled Boko Haram back home. Chad executes 10 members of Boko Haram. Boko Haram has killed 69 people in three different attacks.

In Pakistan, eight are killed on the border with India on the 50th anniversary of war between the countries. A suicide attack in the northwest of the country killed dozens of people.

In Somalia, the government expresses its intentions to ban female genital mutilation, which affects an estimated 98% of Somali women and girls. An attack on an African Union base in southern Somalia by Al Shabaab killed an estimated 50 peacekeepers. Authorities warn of a return to piracy in the Puntland region. Flooding in the country is threatening to cause another famine.

In South Sudan, leaders finally sign a peace deal, although challenges remain in the path towards lasting peace. Both sides have already accused one another of violating the deal.

In Sudan, the president is planning to travel to China, where rights groups hope he will be arrested and taken to the International Criminal Court. He is currently the only head of state who is wanted for acts of genocide.

In Syria, evidence that ISIS used mustard gas (a chemical weapon). President Assad justifies the presence of Hezbollah fighters in Syria and remains confident of continued support from Iran and Russia. Access to water in Syria has been cut in half since the war began. A temporary ceasefire was negotiated in three towns, but it collapsed soon after. ISIS has destroyed another archaeological site, the Temple of Bel. Why does ISIS target cultural sites? And an overview of world heritage sites that could be in danger across the Middle East.

In Yemen, the government refuses to negotiate with Houthi rebels until they lay down their weapons. An attack on a factory killed 34 citizens. And an examination of the degree to which Yemen even has a government, both now and in the past.