Top of the Morning: Sudan Blocks 900,000 From Accessing Aid; Peacekeeping Drones?; The Post 2015 Development Agenda

Top stories from the Development and Aid Word News Service.

UN: Over 900,000 People Blocked from Receiving Humanitarian aid in Sudan Border Regions

Yet more appalling news from Sudan. “The director of U.N. humanitarian operations blamed the Sudanese government and rebels Tuesday for blocking all humanitarian aid from two southern states where over 900,000 people need help and an unknown number are surviving on roots and leaves or dying. John Ging said a year-long effort to get access to South Kordofan and Blue Nile states has failed because of a lack of “political will” by the government and the rebels who are allied with guerrilla forces that eventually came to power in South Sudan. ‘The humanitarian status of these people is truly appalling,” Ging told reporters after briefing the Security Council. “If we don’t find a solution to this, then the inevitable consequence is more people will die, more needless humanitarian suffering will occur and more displacement into South Sudan and Ethiopia.’” (AP http://bit.ly/WKUBbj)

Peacekeeping Drones?

UN Peacekeeping is trying to enter the 21st century, but is met with resistance by some member states. “The U.N. Department of Peacekeeping has notified Congo, Rwanda and Uganda that it intends to deploy a unit of at least three unarmed surveillance drones in the eastern region of Congo. The action is the first step in a broader bid to integrate unmanned aerial surveillance systems, which have become a standard feature of Western military operations, into the United Nations’ far-flung peacekeeping empire. But the effort is encountering resistance from governments, particularly those from the developing world, that fear the drones will open up a new intelligence-gathering front dominated by Western powers and potentially supplant the legions of African and Asian peacekeepers who now act as the United Nations’ eyes and ears on the ground.” (WaPo http://wapo.st/WKWvJ8)

Save the Children UK Unveils Post-2015 Proposal

2013 will be a year of big decisions on what kind of international development agenda will replace the MDGs. Many organizations are offering up some ideas. Here’s Save the Children’s contribution. “The Save the Children report argues that the post-MDG framework cannot ignore inequality, saying it “must place tackling inequality front and centre”. It says the top 5% of the world’s population is understood to have 37% of global income, while the bottom 5% has less than 0.2% – and the income of the top 1.75% of the world’s population matches the entire income of the poorest 77%. Reducing inequality is one of the most effective strategies to accelerate national rates of progress and is an effective those who are most excluded and marginalised, said Save the Children. (Guardian http://bit.ly/WKXuZJ)

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