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Heartbreaking Migrant Images, China Troop Cuts, 3 Trillion Trees

Heartbreaking Migrant Images, China Troop Cuts, 3 Trillion Trees

HEARTBREAKING IMAGES SHOW HORROR OF MIGRANT CRISIS

Shocking photographs of the body of a Syrian toddler, whose body had washed up on a Turkish beach after his family's failed attempt to reach Europe, are sparking global outcry. The first of the images shows a Syrian boy identified as Aylan Kurdi, 3, face down on the beach of the southwestern resort town of Bodrum. A subsequent shot shows a Turkish police officer carrying the boy's lifeless body. The photos made the front pages of some newspapers around the world today, though some editors chose not to publish the images in line with longstanding journalistic practice to avoid shocking readers. See how some of the world's top newspapers chose to feature them.

  • Meanwhile, hundreds of migrants stormed Budapest's main railway station, which reopened its doors today after a two-day standoff, Die Welt reports.
  • But an announcement said that international trains to Western Europe had been suspended "indefinitely."
  • About 3,000 people — mostly people fleeing war in the Middle East — are camping around Budapest's Keleti station, a Libération reporter on site says.
  • Hungary's anti-migrant Prime Minister Viktor Orban has said the refugees couldn't leave Hungary without being registered, the BBC reports. Most of the migrants in Hungary have been refusing to register there, hoping to reach Germany before seeking asylum.

YEMEN MOSQUE BOMBING KILLS 32

Two ISIS suicide bombings against a Shia mosque in Yemen's capital Sanaa have left 32 people dead and 92 wounded, Al Arabiya reports. A man wearing an explosive belt reportedly blew himself up as worshippers were leaving the mosque, before another man detonated his vehicle packed with explosives as people came to rescue the victims.


ON THIS DAY


Writer and abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass escaped slavery 177 years ago today. That and more in your shot of history.


MALAYSIA BOAT CAPSIZES, KILLS 14

At least 14 people died when an overloaded wooden boat reportedly carrying dozens of immigrants sank off the Malaysian coast today, Reuters quoted maritime officials as saying. The boat was believed to be heading to Indonesia after leaving Malaysia's Selangor state. Southeast Asia has been facing a huge migrant crisis since May, when Thai authorities launched a crackdown on people-smuggling gangs.


GUATEMALAN PRESIDENT RESIGNS

Photo: Luis Echeverria/Xinhua/ZUMA

Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina resigned from office late yesterday, hours after police issued an arrest warrant against him and days before a presidential election, The Guardian reports. Guatemala's parliament voted to withdraw his immunity amid a growing corruption scandal in which he is accused of being part of a customs fraud ring that gave discounts on important tariffs to companies, in exchange for kickbacks. He has denied these allegations, suggesting he's the target of a plot. His current whereabouts are unknown, but his lawyer said that, if charged, Pérez Molina would turn himself in to authorities.


WORLDCRUNCH-TO-GO

Conventional business wisdom now calls for employee "flexibility." But too often that leads to work and rest becoming so intermingled that a hard-earned freedom gets lost, Alexander Hagelüken writes for Süddeutsche Zeitung. "Germany's Employer's Association wants to abolish the eight-hour working day, which has long been used as a benchmark as to how long an employee can be expected to work," he writes. "Business leaders insist that they do not want staff to work any longer than eight hours a day, but rather create more flexibility in view of changing lifestyles and growing global competition. But the question remains as to what that will mean for employees in Germany, where the boundaries between work and rest are becoming increasingly blurred. Some 16% of Germans complain about the fact that their gainful employment is increasingly leading to an overlapping of work and time spent with family."

Read the full article, From Germany, A Call To Save The Eight-Hour Work Day.


CHINA ANNOUNCES MASSIVE TROOP CUTS

China is set to cut the number of its troops by 300,000, Xinhua quoted President Xi Jinping as saying today as the country held a military parade to commemorate the 70th anniversary of China's World War II victory over Japan. "Prejudice and discrimination, hatred and war can only cause disaster and pain," Xi said. "China will always uphold the path of peaceful development." The number of Chinese troops has been cut three times since the 1980s. The defense ministry said the cuts would be effective by the end of 2017. According to Reuters, the move is likely part of military plans that aim to spend more money on high-tech weapons for the navy and air force. A report by the Taiwanese defense ministry says that China is currently building two aircraft carriers, which could be the same size as its sole 60,000-ton carrier, Reuters reports.


MY GRAND-PÈRE'S WORLD



3 TRILLION

That's a 3 followed by 12 0s, and it's approximately the number of trees on Earth, according to the science journal Nature. That's eight times more than what was previously estimated (about 400 billion). A team of scientists from Yale University found that most of these trees (1.39 trillion) were located in the tropics and subtropics. They also say about 15 billion trees are cut down every year, with only 5 million being planted back.

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Society

In Northern Kenya, Where Climate Change Is Measured In Starving Children

The worst drought in 40 years, which has deepened from the effects of climate change, is hitting the young the hardest around the Horn of Africa. A close-up look at the victims, and attempts to save lives and limit lasting effects on an already fragile region in Kenya.

Photo of five mothers holding their malnourished children

At feeding time, nurses and aides encourage mothers to socialize their children and stimulate them to eat.

Georgina Gustin

KAKUMA — The words "Stabilization Ward" are painted in uneven black letters above the entrance, but everyone in this massive refugee camp in Kakuma, Kenya, calls it ya maziwa: The place of milk.

Rescue workers and doctors, mothers and fathers, have carried hundreds of starving children through the doors of this one-room hospital wing, which is sometimes so crowded that babies and toddlers have to share beds. A pediatric unit is only a few steps away, but malnourished children don’t go there. They need special care, and even that doesn’t always save them.

In an office of the International Rescue Committee nearby, Vincent Opinya sits behind a desk with figures on dry-erase boards and a map of the camp on the walls around him. “We’ve lost 45 children this year due to malnutrition,” he says, juggling emergencies, phone calls, and texts. “We’re seeing a significant increase in malnutrition cases as a result of the drought — the worst we’ve faced in 40 years.”

From January to June, the ward experienced an 800 percent rise in admissions of children under 5 who needed treatment for malnourishment — a surge that aid groups blame mostly on a climate change-fueled drought that has turned the region into a parched barren.

Opinya, the nutrition manager for the IRC here, has had to rattle off these statistics many times, but the reality of the numbers is starting to crack his professional armor. “It’s a very sad situation,” he says, wearily. And he believes it will only get worse. A third year of drought is likely on the way.

More children may die. But millions will survive malnutrition and hunger only to live through a compromised future, researchers say. The longer-term health effects of this drought — weakened immune systems, developmental problems — will persist for a generation or more, with consequences that will cascade into communities and societies for decades.

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