Attempted land grab by Ethiopian government has led to violence against ethnic group
The Save the Children charity says it has raised less than a third of what it needs to help Ethiopia cope with a drought which has left 10.2 million people critically short of food
(Reuters) – An Ethiopian military aircraft carrying ammunition crash-landed at Mogadishu’s international airport on Friday, bursting into flames and killing four of the six crew members.
The Soviet-made Antonov 24 plane got into trouble in the air and then missed the runway, hurtling into the ground shortly after 0400 GMT and setting off the ammunition.
Ethiopian troops are supporting Somalia’s fight against al Qaeda-linked militants in the Horn of Africa country, although they are not part of an African Union (AU) peacekeeping force. There was no immediate comment from Ethiopia’s foreign ministry.
“We can hear explosions as it burns. It is burning like hell,” said one security source at the airport. After the fire was put out, only a blackened shell of the plane remained.
The AU peacekeeping force, known as AMISOM, said in a statement four crew members were killed and two were in hospital.
It was unclear what ammunition the plane was carrying and where it was headed. A convoy of empty Somali military trucks had earlier been seen at the airport.
By Shadia Nasralla
CAIRO, June 9 (Reuters) – Egypt’s foreign minister, vowing not to give up “a single drop of water from the Nile”, said on Sunday he would go to Addis Ababa to discuss a giant dam that Ethiopia has begun building in defiance of Cairo’s objections.
Speaking to Egypt’s state news agency MENA two days after the Ethiopian government flatly rejected a request from Cairo to halt the project, Mohamed Kamel Amr said Egyptians view any obstacle to the river’s flow as a threat to national survival.
“No Nile – no Egypt,” he said, highlighting the pressure on the Egyptian government, whose popularity is wilting in the face of economic troubles, to prevent the hydro power plant cutting already stretched water supplies for its 84 million people.
By Katherine Weber , Christian Post Reporter
World Vision, an international Christian humanitarian organization, has been working for nearly three decades to bring clean water to the most remote areas of the world, and with the invention of a manual, smaller plastic pump, the relief organization is hoping to expand its clean water outreach even farther.
The pump, according to Randy Strash, World Vision’s water, sanitation, and hygiene strategist, consists of a small, plastic PVC pipe and PVC fittings which costs only $25 to assemble, compared to $700 to $800 for standard stainless steel pumps previously used in many parts of the world.
Although the pump’s plastic composition seems flimsy, it will actually last five to seven years without any need for maintenance, according to Strash.
Additionally, the pump is lightweight and small, making it easy to transport via pickup truck or motorbike, and therefore, in comparison to the heavy machinery traditionally used for pumping water, this new pump will be able to “access communities beyond reach.”
The pump uses natural hydraulics instead of suction, therefore making it very easy to use, so much so that a child can operate the pump.
Due to the pump’s easy use and lack of maintenance needs, Strash confirms that communities will not require extensive training on the pump, therefore “greatly reducing the cost of accessing safe water for many.”
The pump’s technology was developed by Water4, an initiative founded in 2008 and dedicated to eradicating the global water crisis by equipping communities in Central America, Africa and parts of Asia with the supplies and knowledge needed to drill their own wells.
As Strash told CP, World Vision hopes to increase local entrepreneurship in developing countries with the help of this new plastic pump.
“Our hope is to spin off teams of entrepreneurs to continue to use the equipment and skills to build new pumps in their countries from their own materials,” Strash told CP.
Strash contends that the pump’s proliferation will create a market, create jobs, and stimulate local economy while simultaneously addressing the global demand for clean water.
A study conducted by Stanford University in the 2000s found that freshwater availability and water fetching distance affect child health in sub-Saharan Africa.
According to the study, “a 15-min decrease in one-way walk time to water source is associated with a 41 percent average relative reduction in diarrhea prevalence, improved anthropometric indicators of child nutritional status, and a 11 percent relative reduction in under-five child mortality.”
“These results suggest that reducing the time cost of fetching water should be a priority for water infrastructure investments in Africa,” the study concluded.
As Strash contends, the plastic manual pumps are able to be installed in local communities where traditional big rigs cannot fit, and therefore these smaller pumps greatly reduce the risk of water contamination due to their proximity to the community.
Strash has big plans for the communities using these new plastic pumps, saying that he believes eventually they will result in better environmental conditions, turning a community from “arid to lush.”
“The whole idea is to proliferate the number of wells. You can get more water out of the wells because they’re closer and the pump is more efficient,” Strash explained.
“Maybe people will start growing vegetables that are hand-watered, and they’ll have vegetables growing year round,” he said, adding that easy access to water can result in “three crops, instead of one.”
Currently, World Vision is working with the Water4 initiative to have these new pumps installed in Ethiopia, Ghana, Mali, and Niger, along with several other countries.
The manual pumps have been used in Angola for the past several years.
Nearly 5,000 children die every day due to the lack of access to clean water, which is why the United Nations designated Friday World Water Day, so that this continued epidemic may be ended once and for all.
World Vision has managed to provide clean water to over 11 million people during its efforts over the past 25 years, and is striving to reach an additional six million in the next five years.