Latest Developments, June 30

In today’s news…

The US announced yesterday it had conducted a drone attack in Somalia, bringing to at least six the number of countries in which the CIA has conducted unmanned lethal attacks, after Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Iraq and Yemen. A report out last week from the Oxford Research Group looks into the legal black hole of drone strikes. Its lead author recently argued: “It is high time to implement a global casualty recording mechanism which includes civilians so that finally every casualty of every conflict is identified. The law requires it, and drones provide no exemption from that requirement.” American officials declined to answer any questions about the Somali incident.

Transparency International asks what a good code of conduct for the defence industry might look like. Unsurprisingly, it does not look like wiring $9 million to the head of the Jordanian intelligence agency in order to ease the delivery of oil to American forces in Iraq, as new court filings suggest a Florida billionaire may have done in 2007.

Rezaul Karim Chowdhury calls World Bank climate adaptation loans “a form of trickery that will push us deeper into poverty”. The loans, he argues, will compound the hardship caused by climate change by increasing the debt load of countries such as Bangladesh.

A UN expert on foreign debt and human rights suggests Greece’s proposed austerity measures could threaten its citizens’ basic human rights, including the rights to water, food and adequate housing.

African governments look to forge a multilateral agreement aimed at protecting their tax revenues from harmful practices, such as transfer pricing by multinational corporations.

The Economist identifies Argentina, Brazil, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Turkey and Vietnam as the emerging markets whose economies are most likely to overheat. Pakistan and South Africa are among the least likely.

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