MAGA Republicans Continue to Push Abortion Restrictions to Dangerous Extremes

30 Jun

Republican leaders are making it clear that they have no issue undermining the rights of the American people and are going all in, spending thousands to push their extremist anti-choice MAGA agenda. Now, Republicans are going even further and pushing for restrictions on interstate travel for pregnant women. 

Make no mistake: For MAGA Republicans, overturning Roe is just the beginning. Now they are pushing to block patients from crossing state lines.

Washington Post: “Antiabortion lawmakers want to block patients from crossing state lines”

Washington Post: “The National Association of Christian Lawmakers, an antiabortion organization led by Republican state legislators, has begun working with the authors of the Texas abortion ban to explore model legislation that would restrict people from crossing state lines for abortions, said Texas state representative Tom Oliverson (R), the charter chair of the group’s national legislative council.”

Republicans like Mike Pence are all in, and spending thousands to highlight their dangerous and extremist anti-choice agenda: 

Axios: “Former Vice President Mike Pence is expanding his involvement in the anti-abortion movement’s work ahead of the 2022 midterms, contributing $500,000 to an existing multimillion-dollar ad campaign run by the largest national anti-abortion group, Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America.” 

Mike Pence: “Now that Roe v. Wade has been consigned to the ash heap of history, a new arena in the cause of life has emerged, and it is incumbent on all who cherish the sanctity of life to resolve that we will take the defense of the unborn and the support for women in pregnancy resource centers to every state in America.”

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MAGA Hot Mic: VA GOP Congressional Candidate Yesli Vega

30 Jun

Axios: “Spanberger rival Yesli Vega doubts pregnancy after rape”

Today’s inaugural MAGA Hot Mic moment comes from Virginia GOP congressional candidate Yesli Vega. 

In a newly released audio recording, MAGA candidate Vega implied that people who experience rape are less likely to get pregnant.

Vega’s claim is a lie that the congressional hopeful used to defend her support of an abortion ban with no exceptions for rape or incest. 

Read the full interaction below: 

YESLI VEGA: “The left will say, ‘Well what about in cases of rape or incest?’ I’m a law enforcement officer. I became a police officer in 2011. I’ve worked one case where as a result of a rape, the young woman became pregnant.”


QUESTION: “I’ve actually heard that it’s harder for a woman to get pregnant if she’s been raped. Have you heard that?”

VEGA: “Well, maybe because there’s so much going on in the body. I don’t know. I haven’t, you know, seen any studies. But if I’m processing what you’re saying, it wouldn’t surprise me. Because it’s not something that’s happening organically. You’re forcing it. The individual, the male, is doing it as quickly — it’s not like, you know — and so I can see why there is truth to that. It’s unfortunate.”

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WHO intensifies response to looming health crisis in the greater Horn of Africa as food insecurity worsens

30 Jun

WHO is scaling up its operations in eastern Africa as the region faces acute food insecurity caused by conflict, extreme weather events – including the worst drought in 40 years – induced by climate change, rising international food and fuel prices and the impact of the pandemic.

Over 80 million people in the eastern African region are food insecure and resorting to desperate measures to feed themselves and their families. Acute malnutrition is high, especially among children.

As malnutrition increases, the health needs in the region are mounting, especially among children, and clean water is becoming scarce. As people leave their homes in search of food, they can no longer access health services, and become more at risk from disease outbreaks.  

“The cost of inaction is high,” said Dr Ibrahima Socé Fall, WHO Assistant Director-General for Emergency Response.  “While the clear priority is to prevent people from starving, we must simultaneously strengthen our health response to prevent disease and save lives. Even one life lost from a vaccine-preventable disease, diarrhoea, or medical complications from malnutrition in today’s world is one life too many.”  

Dr Fall was speaking in Nairobi where WHO convened a two-day meeting [26-27 June 2022] to plan its response across the seven countries affected by the health emergency – Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda – and coordinate with other UN agencies and partners.

WHO’s emergency response is focused on ensuring affected populations can access essential health services, treating sick children with severe malnutrition, and preventing, detecting and responding to infectious disease outbreaks.

WHO is setting up a hub in Nairobi, from where it will coordinate the response and organize the delivery of life-saving medical supplies to where they are needed most.  These supplies include medicines, vaccines, as well the medicines and equipment needed to treat children who are severely malnourished. Other than providing these critical supplies, WHO is working with ministries of health in the affected countries to set up robust disease surveillance systems to be able to quickly detect and respond to disease outbreaks.

Note to editors

  • Four consecutive rainy seasons have failed in the region, a climatic event not seen in at least 40 years. The latest forecasts suggest that there is now a concrete risk that the next rainy season could also fail (source: WMO).
  • Over 80 million people in the Eastern African region are food insecure (source: WFP), where they have to resort to desperate measures in order to feed themselves and their families.
  • The situation is particularly urgent in the drought-affected areas of Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia where a lack of food means that an estimated 7 million children are malnourished, including over 1.7 million who are severely malnourished (source: Unicef). Severe acute malnutrition is a life-threatening condition requiring urgent treatment.
  • Different countries are affected differently. For example, in Uganda, the problem is concentrated in the north-eastern region, while in South Sudan, over 60% of the population is facing a hunger crisis.
  • All seven countries (Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda) are dealing with outbreaks of measles and cholera.
  • All seven countries are malaria-endemic countries. Children are disproportionately affected by malaria, with 80% of malaria deaths in the African region being among those under the age of 5 years.
  • Four countries – Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda – are facing outbreaks of meningococcal meningitis, a serious and potentially fatal bacterial infection.
  • This region has seen years of conflict and displacement. 4.2 million people in the region are refugees, and another 11.1 million are internally displaced (source: UNHCR).


New political declaration to halve road traffic deaths and injuries by 2030 is a milestone achievement

30 Jun

The World Health Organization (WHO) welcomes the political declaration to be adopted by Member States during the High-level Meeting of the UN General Assembly on Global Road Safety. It commits to cut road traffic deaths and injuries by 50% by 2030, a milestone for road safety and sustainable mobility.

The meeting takes place on 30 June – 1 July 2022 under the theme “The 2030 horizon for road safety: securing a decade of action and delivery”.

Road safety affects everyone. We step from our homes every day onto roads that take us to our jobs, schools and to meet our vital daily needs. Yet our transport systems remain far too dangerous. No death should be acceptable on our roads. The future of mobility should promote health and well-being, protect the environment and benefit all,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO. “It will require transformative leadership from the highest levels of government to act on the Political Declaration to make that vision a reality.”

Worldwide, road crashes currently kill around 1.3 million people each year – more than 2 every minute, and more than 90% occur in low- and middle-income countries. Crashes are the biggest killer of children and young people globally. More than 50 million people have died on the world’s roads since the invention of the automobile, more than the number of deaths in the First World War or in some of the worst global epidemics.

WHO is the lead agency for road safety in the United Nations and supported the President of the UN General Assembly in preparing this High-Level Meeting in collaboration with other UN agencies.

Through the declaration governments from around the world commit to provide leadership and coordination at the highest level of government to ensure all parts of the society are included to act on road safety and commit to boost policies and actions to reduce deaths and injuries. The declaration calls for the development and funding of national and local plans with clear targets and funding.

“Road traffic deaths upend countless lives and cost countries around 3% of GDP each year,” notes Dr Etienne Krug, Director of the Department for Social Determinants of Health, WHO. “This is an unacceptable price to pay for mobility. Putting safety at the heart of our mobility systems is an urgent health, economic and moral imperative. Let’s work together to scale up what works, save lives and build streets for life.”

In September 2020, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution to proclaim the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2021–2030. WHO and the UN regional commissions, in cooperation with other partners in the UN Road Safety Collaboration, have developed a Global Plan for the Decade of Action, which was released in October 2021.  

The plan calls for continued improvements in the design of roads and vehicles, enhancement of laws and law enforcement, and provision of timely, life-saving emergency care for the injured. In addition, it promotes healthy and environmentally sound modes of transport.

It also highlights that responsibility for road safety stretches far beyond health and transport. Urban planners and engineers must prioritize safety as a core value in all transport infrastructure while businesses can influence and contribute to strengthening road safety by applying safety-first principles to their entire value chains.

Countries and cities guided by the plan are seeing dramatic reductions in deaths. For example, the Colombian capital of Bogota halved deaths over 10 years through a set of integrated actions, including wide-ranging technical improvements and regulatory reforms that were driven by strong leadership.

The meeting will take place in New York on 30 June 2022, at 10:00 EST. The event will be broadcasted on UN Web TV.

Democratic Republic of the Congo National Day

30 Jun

Antony J. Blinken, Secretary of State

On behalf of the United States, I extend my best wishes and congratulations to the people and the government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo on the 62nd anniversary of your independence.

On this occasion, we reaffirm our commitment to strengthening our U.S.-DRC Privileged Partnership for Peace, Prosperity, and Preservation of the Environment which reflects our common values and shared interests in improving the lives of our citizens.

We look forward to strengthening our partnership on shared priorities such as democratic institutions, economic prosperity, health, and conservation in the Congo Basin.

I look forward to advancing our partnership with the DRC to work for a better future for all Congolese people.

Calls for Upholding Law of the Sea Convention Dominate Lisbon Dialogue as Delegates Outline Ways to Improve Ocean Conservation

30 Jun

LISBON, 30 June — Calls for the full implementation of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea dominated the seventh Lisbon dialogue today, with delegates describing the landmark treaty as a “beacon” of multilateralism and “starting point” for improving the conservation and sustainable use of the ocean through international law.

At High-Level Session, General Assembly Unanimously Adopts Resolution on Improving Global Road Safety, Stresses Commitment to Reduce Fatalities in Half by 2030

30 Jun

Adopting a sweeping political declaration on global road safety, the General Assembly today committed to a range of actions aimed at reducing road traffic deaths — 90 per cent of which occur in the world’s low- and middle-income countries — by at least 50 per cent by the year 2030.

Security Council Renews Democratic Republic of Congo Sanctions Regimes, Adopting Resolution 2641 (2022)

30 Jun

Amid a deteriorating security situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Security Council today renewed the sanctions regime imposed on that country and extended until 1 August 2023 the mandate of the Group of Experts overseeing its implementation.