FSRN Weekly Edition – August 26, 2016
- Half-century civil conflict in Colombia ends in historic peace agreement
- Turkish ground forces enter Syrian conflict
- West Virginia halts mountaintop removal project after strong opposition from locals
- U.S. auctions Gulf of Mexico oil leases as residents clean up in Baton Rouge
- Court blocks Obama administration’s guidance on trans bathroom rights
- Asylum seekers detained in Australia’s Manus Island center await their fate
- Zimbabwe protest turns violent after police try dispersing the crowd
- UN notes brutal attack on aid workers at World Humanitarian Day fête
- Farms in California turn to new methods to conserve water amidst worst drought on record
Colombia declared an end to the longest running civil conflict in the Western Hemisphere this week. In a historic agreement, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – known as the FARC – signed a peace agreement with the Colombian government to end more than 50 years of civil war that’s killed nearly 225,000 people. FSRN’s Andalusia Knoll has more.
Turkish tanks and troops moved into Syria to capture the city of Jarablus Wednesday in its first ground offensive against the self-styled Islamic State. But the Turkish invasion will also deny Kurdish militia from consolidating its gains in northeastern Syria. FSRN’s Jacob Resneck explains.
In West Virginia’s coal country, the state put the brakes on a mountaintop removal mine after a wellspring of citizen opposition. FSRN’s Melinda Tuhus reports.
Despite opposition from Gulf coast residents, the federal government auctioned off oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico this week. Environmentalist say fossil fuel exploitation is inappropriate as the region recovers from massive flooding brought on by severe weather linked to climate change. FSRN’s Nell Abram has more.
Students made their way to the first day of classes in schools across the U.S. But which restrooms are available to which students remains unclear, after a federal Judge blocked Obama administration guidance issued earlier this year. FSRN’s Nell Abram has more.
Four months after Papua New Guinea’s Supreme Court ordered the shut-down of the Manus Island detention center, more than 800 detainees await an uncertain fate. The Manus Island Regional Processing Center is an Australian immigration facility on an isolated Pacific island. It houses asylum seekers intercepted offshore in line with Australia’s hard-line policy of preventing refugees from reaching its coastline. Georgia Clark reports from Sydney.
Unrest in Zimbabwe is growing. Friday, widespread protests called by 18 opposition parties continued even as police used batons, water cannon and tear gas to forcibly disperse anti-government rallies called earlier this week. The uptick in public dissent reflects growing discontent against 92-year-old president Robert Mugabe, who has held power since 1980. FSRN’s Garikai Chaunza filed this dispatch from Harare.
The United Nations continues to investigate allegations its peacekeepers failed to respond when foreign aid workers were attacked last month in Southern Sudan. The UN did not publicly acknowledge the alleged beatings, gang rapes and mock executions in Juba until after The Associated Press published a damning report based on eyewitness accounts. FSRN’s Patricia Nunan reports.
California remains in the midst of its worst drought on record. Even the most conservative estimates say agriculture uses more than 40 percent of the state’s water. But as FSRN’s Lena Nozizwe found, there’s at least one experimental farm in Long Beach trying to set a positive example.