Africa

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The World Is Running Out of Chocolate

Two chocolate makers warn of huge annual deficit

(Newser) - Like grabbing a Snickers on the run or savoring a little dark chocolate in the evening? Then brace yourself, because chocolate production is failing to keep up with worldwide consumption and could fall behind by 2 million metric tons annually by 2030, two big chocolate makers tell the Washington Post... More »

Bill Gates' Hunger Fight Is Deeply Flawed: Report

Hardly any money goes directly to African groups

(Newser) - Though the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has spent $3 billion to fight hunger in poor countries, most of that money has gone to groups based in wealthy countries, a new report finds. Just 10% of the money has gone to African organizations, while more than 80% has headed to... More »

Spain: Nurse Wins Battle With Ebola

Blood test shows no signs of virus in Teresa Romero

(Newser) - An initial test shows that a nursing assistant who became infected with Ebola in Spain is now clear of all traces of the virus nearly two weeks after she was hospitalized, authorities said today. Teresa Romero, 44, is the first person known to have contracted the disease outside West Africa... More »

The Ebola Outbreak: It's Time for 'Plan C'

We need 500M doses of a vaccine we don't have: Michael Osterholm

(Newser) - Plan A for stopping Ebola calls for shutting it down where it's already occurring, and that's not working. There's no Plan B in place to prevent it from expanding even further, especially if it hits a busy area with limited health care. So it's time for... More »

To Fight Ebola, Sierra Leone Set for 'Lockdown'

Locals barred from going out for 3 days

(Newser) - After hundreds of deaths in the country due to Ebola , Sierra Leone is heading for a lockdown. That means that for at least three days, starting Sept. 19, locals won't be able to leave the vicinity of their homes, Reuters reports. The goal is to spot people in the... More »

World 'Losing' Ebola Battle: Doctors Without Borders

Top doc tells UN world has done nothing to stem spread

(Newser) - The picture of Ebola in West Africa is apocalyptic: Infected bodies decompose in the street, 150 health workers have died, overflowing clinics turn away the sick, to say nothing of food shortages and riots. And the disease is spreading at an unprecedented rate , Doctors Without Borders President Joanne Liu told... More »

To Detect TB, Researchers Turn to Rats

Creatures sniff out the disease in Mozambique

(Newser) - The system used to detect tuberculosis in Mozambique is more than a century old—so researchers are asking some furry friends for help. Scientists have been teaching African giant pouched rats to alert them to infected mucus samples, National Geographic reports. The researchers slide the samples into the rats' cage,... More »

More Elephants Being Killed Than Born

35K killed annually since 2010; deaths driven by illegal ivory trade

(Newser) - A new study tallying the African elephant population has made a stark finding: If poaching continues at its current rate, the animal may be extinct in a century, the BBC reports. "We are shredding the fabric of elephant society and exterminating populations across the continent," says the study'... More »

Africa Fights Ebola With Black Death Tactic

Enforced boundary around infected area being put in place

(Newser) - The Ebola outbreak is spreading so fast that governments are putting into place "cordon sanitaire"—a tactic once used to contain the Black Death, the New York Times reports. The idea is to draw a boundary around the infected area and not allow anybody out. In this case,... More »

Ebola Killed 45 in 3 Days; Toll Nears 1K

Virus has now claimed 932, with 1.7K cases: WHO

(Newser) - The death toll from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa has risen to 932, the World Health Organization says. Most of the new deaths are coming from Liberia and Sierra Leone. The outbreak emerged in March in Guinea and shows no sign of slowing down. Among the latest news:
  • Nigeria
... More »

Why Can't Everyone Try Experimental Ebola Drug?

Distribution could 'do more harm than good': expert

(Newser) - Two Americans suffering from Ebola have been treated with an experimental drug, and they've reportedly seen big improvements. Is it time to try sending ZMapp to West Africa to aid the hundreds suffering from the disease? No, experts tell the Los Angeles Times . Drugs require extensive testing in order... More »

Obama Offers Rare Personal Toast on Africa

Speaks of family history at US-Africa Summit dinner

(Newser) - President Obama isn't known for getting particularly personal at the podium, Politico notes, but in a speech at the US-Africa Summit , he offered up his own story. "I stand before you as the president of the United States and a proud American. I also stand before you as... More »

Michelle Obama: 'Blood of Africa' in My Veins

First lady urges young African leaders to focus on women's rights

(Newser) - Her husband didn't dwell much on his African heritage when he addressed a group of young leaders from the continent this week in DC, but first lady Michelle Obama took the opposite approach today, reports Reuters . “The blood of Africa runs through my veins, and I care deeply,... More »

'Tip of Iceberg'? Ebola Toll Passes 500

Aid group blames 'gross misjudgement in gauging severity'

(Newser) - Deep in the forests of southern Guinea, the first victims fell ill with high fevers. People assumed it was the perennial killer malaria and had no reason to fear touching the bodies. Some desperate relatives brought loved ones to the distant capital in search of better medical care, unknowingly spreading... More »

Virginia Dad Treks to Africa, Claims Country for Daughter

Emily Heaton wanted to be a real princess

(Newser) - Most dads would probably say they'd do anything for their daughters, but only one that we know of has actually traveled to an unclaimed patch of land in the African desert, planted a flag, and declared himself king—all so his little girl could officially be a princess. Jeremiah... More »

Team Thinks It Cracked an HIV Mystery

Genital disease may explain why majority of Africa's AIDS victims are women

(Newser) - Why are 60% of Africa's AIDS victims women when in the rest of the world, the majority are men? For researchers, it's a longstanding mystery—but Norwegian experts working in South Africa have a theory. A disease called genital schistosomiasis, or "schisto," can lead to vaginal... More »

South Sudan Makes Peace Deal With Rebels

President Salva Kiir agrees to peace after 5 months of fighting

(Newser) - Finally, peace in South Sudan? President Salva Kiir agreed to a peace deal today with rebel leader Riek Machar after five months of fighting, thousands killed, and a million forced to flee their homes, the BBC reports. Signed in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa, the deal includes drafting a... More »

Know What Famine Victims Don't Need? Rock Stars

Slate columnist: In fact, they might be doing more harm than good

(Newser) - Rock stars have been joining together on behalf of Africa's famine victims since the days of Live Aid in the 1980s, but these well-meaning ventures might actually be making the problem worse, writes William Easterly at Slate . For one thing, celebrity relief concerts tend to reinforce the stereotype that... More »

Deadly Fly's Strange Vulnerability: Its Breast Milk

Scientists decode insect's genome, may try to stifle mom's production

(Newser) - Scientists have unraveled the genome of the tsetse fly after a 10-year effort, and the development could save Africa from the devastating effects of the fatal infection it carries known as sleeping sickness, reports LiveScience . While the disease—one that drives its victims crazy in rabies-like fashion and is fatal... More »

Ebola Outbreak Spreads in West Africa

Doctors Without Borders scrambles to help victims in Guinea

(Newser) - An outbreak of Ebola has killed more than 50 people in the West African country of Guinea, NPR reports. Guinea's first-ever outbreak of the disease among humans has officially killed 59, and another 21 are suffering from symptoms such as fever, vomiting, and diarrhea. "But you have to... More »

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