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Also In Global Health News: Afghan Waste Management, Social Issues; Male Circumcision In Kenya; Somalia, WFP; HIV/AIDS Fight In Malawi

$60M USAID Waste Management Project In Afghanistan

USAID will spend $60 million through 2012 on “waste management, drainage channels and roadside ditches, the rehabilitation of city parks and sports fields, and other greenery programmes in Kabul,” Afghanistan, IRIN reports. The article also looks at the health effects of unmanaged waste in the city and the sustainability of the management program (1/7).

International Efforts To Stabilize Afghanistan Must Emphasize Social Issues, U.N. Official Says

“Kai Eide, the departing United Nations envoy to Afghanistan, warned the Security Council on Wednesday that an emphasis on security matters over social issues would doom international efforts to stabilize the country,” the New York Times reports (MacFarquhar, 1/6). “If we do not take these civilian components of the transition strategy as seriously as the military component, then we will fail,” Eide said. According to the Washington Post, Eide “stressed greater investment in education, agriculture and infrastructure … ” (Lynch, 1/7). The New York Times reports, “Rosemary A. DiCarlo, the American envoy addressing the Security Council, noted that the United States planned to triple the number of civilians sent to help with reconstruction and economic and agricultural development; the number will grow to 1,000 experts from 320 now” (1/6).

IRIN Examines Kenya’s National Voluntary Male Circumcision Campaign

IRIN looks at a national voluntary male circumcision campaign in Kenya and the related “benefit” of sexually transmitted infection screening. “The circumcision programme provides voluntary counselling and testing for HIV and routine STI tests to all men who seek the services. According to the government, more than 75,000 men have been circumcised since its launch,” the news service writes (1/6).

Somali Insurgent Group Denies Demanding Money From WFP

Ali Mohammud Raghe, a spokesperson for “Somalia’s hardline insurgent group Al-Shabaab,” said the group had not demanded security payments from the U.N. World Food Programme (WFP) in exchange for food aid distribution in southern Somalia, Garoweonline reports. “We have not received any payment from WFP, if we did so; we would have not demanded them to stop undermining the local farmers by importing food from outside,” he said. “Raghe said they have only demanded the food agency to buy foodstuffs from local farmers instead of importing from America,” the news service writes (1/6).

Arrest Of Gay Couple In Malawi Could Hinder HIV Prevention In Malawi, Rights Group Says 

According to Reuters, Amnesty International claims that the arrest of a gay couple in Malawai “risks driving underground men who have sex with men in Malawi, making it more difficult for access to information on HIV prevention and health services” (Banda, 1/6). Malawi prosecutors are also “leveling pornography charges against” a rights activist who was arrested in connection with the same case “for possessing pamphlets relating to safe sex and HIV educational materials,” VOA News writes (Lesser, 1/7).

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