Hard Numbers: The death of a million species

1 million: One million of Earth's 8 million plant and animal species are at risk of extinction as a result of global warming, according to a new report form the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystems Services (IPBES). The panel estimated the world has less than 12 years to avoid catastrophic climate change.

10,000: In 2019, almost 10,000 people were killed in jihadist-related violence in Africa, comparable to the number killed by similar conflict in Iraq in Syria during the same period. The global coalition of forces in the Sahel region – which includes troops from the US, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and many other countries – is larger than the current US fighting forces in Afghanistan.

1,000: Western Africa is experiencing its deadliest Ebola outbreak in years – with more than 1,000 people dying from the virus in eastern Congo since August. Local violence has compounded the problem, as attacks on health workers have prevented them from addressing the crisis.

100: Over the weekend, China marked 100 years since massive student protests against Western powers provided a spark for modern Chinese nationalism. President Xi Jinping extolled the patriotism of the students who participated in the May 4 protests, but he, and the Communist Party more broadly, have minimized discussion of the protests' anti-authoritarian nature during a year chock-full of sensitive anniversaries.

The Business and Market Fair that recently took place in Sanzule, Ghana featured local crops, livestock and manufactured goods, thanks in part to the Livelihood Restoration Plan (LRP), one of Eni's initiatives to diversify the local economy. The LRP program provided training and support to start new businesses to approximately 1,400 people from 205 households, invigorating entrepreneurship in the community.

Learn more at Eniday: Energy Is A Good Story

Are we seeing the creation of a parallel universe for US and Chinese tech industries?

I think the answer is yes. In the past, US has dominated the world in technologies from P.C. operating systems, semiconductors, to servers, and even Internet. But ever since the rise of mobile technologies, China has really leveraged the large market with a huge amount of data and now is beginning to innovate and build great mobile apps on which there's a large amount of data being collected.

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It's been two months since President Trump abruptly ordered the withdrawal of US troops from northern Syria, paving the way for a bloody Turkish offensive in that region. (See our earlier coverage here.) What's happened since? A guide for the puzzled:

No "end date" for US troops in Syria – US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said this week that the United States has completed its military pullback in northeastern Syria. Back in October, President Trump pledged to withdraw the roughly 1,000 American troops deployed there. Since then, some American troops have left Syria altogether, while others were redeployed to defend nearby oil fields from ISIS, as well as from Syrian government troops and Russia. Now, there are roughly 600 American troops dispersed around Syria, and the remainder have been deployed in Iraq to stave off a potential ISIS resurgence. It's not clear if any troops have returned to the US. When asked about the chaotic comings and goings of US troops in Syria in recent months, the commander of US Central Command said frankly: there's no "end date" for American troops stationed there.

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Turkey's government has captured many thousands of ISIS fighters as a result of its operations in northern Syria. Many of these prisoners have already been deported to some of the more than 100 countries they come from, and Ankara says it intends to send more. There are also more than 10,000 women and children – family members of ISIS fighters – still living in camps inside Syria.

These facts create a dilemma for the governments of countries where the ISIS detainees are still citizens: Should these terrorist fighters and their families be allowed to return, in many cases to face trial back home? Or should countries refuse to allow them back?

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