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The Skanner Black History Month
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Jeremy Christian Guilty of Killing 2 Who Tried to Stop His Slurs on Max

Today jurors found Christian guilty of the May 26, 2017 stabbing deaths of Taliesin Namkai-Meche and Ricky Best

States Step Up Funding for Planned Parenthood Clinics

A spokesman for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon said the agency has been "working closely with state officials to create critical backstops and protect access to care for all Oregonians who need it, regardless of federal action on Title X"

Oregon Denies Permit for Pipeline Before Federal Decision

Oregon's Department of Land Conservation and Development says a proposed liquefied natural gas export terminal in Coos Bay would have significant adverse effects on the state's coastal scenic and aesthetic resources, endangered species and critical habitat

Rep. Blumenauer Joined by Sens. Markey, Sanders, and Warren to Introduce Bill to Hold Big Oil Companies Accountable

"Amidst the growing climate emergency, closing this loophole is a small step we must take to hold Big Oil accountable and to protect our communities," said Blumenauer. 

NEWS BRIEFS

African American Initiative Breast Cancer Survivor Celebration to be Held Saturday

Susan G. Komen Oregon and SW Washington celebrate breast cancer survivors in the African American community with a free gala this...

Dr. Karin Edwards Named New President of Clark College

Board of Trustees names Dr. Karin Edwards as the college’s 15th leader in its 87-year history ...

OneUnited Bank Launches New Limited-Edition Harriet Tubman Card

OneUnited Bank, the largest Black-owned bank in America, introduces the new limited-edition Harriet Tubman Card in celebration of...

Oregon House Votes to End Driver’s License Suspensions for Failure to Pay Fines

Bipartisan Vote Underscores Consensus for Reforms, Makes Way for Senate Action ...

Black History Month 2020: “African Americans and the Vote”

In our celebration of Black History Month 2020, the DPO Black Caucus looks forward to the screening of the award-winning documentary,...

University lab cited for animal welfare violations in Oregon

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon Health & Science University laboratory was cited for violating animal welfare laws after five prairie voles died of thirst, federal inspectors said.The U.S. Department of Agriculture also cited the university after a person risked contaminating surgical...

Man charged in truck stop stabbing sent to state hospital

ONTARIO, Ore. (AP) — A Colorado man charged in what Oregon prosecutors say was a hate crime stabbing has been found unfit for trial and will be sent to the Oregon State Hospital before his legal case can move forward.The Argus-Observer in Ontario reports Malheur County Circuit Court Judge...

OPINION

Black America is Facing a Housing Crisis

As the cost of housing soars the homeless population jumps 12 percent, the number of people renting grows and homeownership falls ...

Trump Expands Muslim Ban to Target Africans

Under the new ban on countries, four out of five people who will be excluded are Africans ...

Martin Luther King Day is an Opportunity for Service

Find out where you can volunteer and make a difference to the community ...

Looking to 2020 — Put Your Vote to WORK!

Ronald Reagan, who turned his back on organized labor and started America’s middle-class into a tailspin, has recently been voted by this administration’s NLRB into the Labor Hall of Fame ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Moscow targets Chinese with raids amid virus fears

MOSCOW (AP) — Bus drivers in Moscow kept their WhatsApp group chat buzzing with questions this week about what to do if they spotted passengers who might be from China riding with them in the Russian capital.“Some Asian-looking (people) have just got on. Probably Chinese. Should I...

Lizzo, 'Just Mercy' win top honors at NAACP Image Awards

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — Lizzo was named entertainer of the year and “Just Mercy” won best motion picture, best actor and best supporting actor Saturday at the NAACP Image Awards, as the show that recognizes entertainers of color ladled honors on the film that was snubbed by...

Sanders wins Nevada caucuses, takes national Democratic lead

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Bernie Sanders scored a commanding victory in Nevada’s presidential caucuses, cementing his status as the Democrats' national front-runner but escalating tensions over whether he’s too liberal to defeat President Donald Trump. As Sanders celebrated Saturday...

ENTERTAINMENT

'West Side Story' opening draws protesters on Broadway

NEW YORK (AP) — There was a chorus outside the Broadway Theatre on Thursday at the opening night of a new revival of “West Side Story” but what was being sung was a protest chant.A group of about 100 people demanded the removal of cast member Amar Ramasar, who was fired and...

Broadway's 'To Kill a Mockingbird' readies for Garden visit

NEW YORK (AP) — Actor Kyle Scatliffe has gone to Madison Square Garden plenty of times — for a Rangers game, a Muse concert and a WWE event. Next week, he's going back again, but this time he won't be in the seats.Scatliffe on Wednesday will be starring in the hit Broadway play...

OWN's 'Cherish the Day' is a rare celebration of black love

LOS ANGELES (AP) — To separate filmmaker and TV producer Ava DuVernay’s trenchant, history-driven projects, including “Selma” and “When They See Us,” from her new romantic drama series is to sell short the determined thoughtfulness that shapes all her...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Israel's Lieberman stills holds keys to future government

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel finds itself in a familiar place after a tumultuous election campaign — with...

Yemen's Houthi rebels impeding UN aid flow, demand a cut

Yemen’s Houthi rebels have blocked half of the United Nations’ aid delivery programs in the war-torn...

Sanders on top: Key takeaways from the Nevada caucuses

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Sen. Bernie Sanders cruised to victory in the Nevada caucuses, heartening his supporters...

Indian authorities scramble to give Trump a mega-rally

AHMEDABAD, India (AP) — The sun-baked city of Ahmedabad was jostling with activity Sunday as workers...

India, US struggling to bridge trade dispute as Trump visits

WASHINGTON (AP) — American dairy farmers, distillers and drugmakers have been eager to break into India,...

South Sudan's rivals form unity government meant to end war

JUBA, South Sudan (AP) — South Sudan opened a new chapter in its fragile emergence from civil war Saturday...

McMenamins
Katharine Houreld Associated Press

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -- Parts of southern Somalia are suffering from famine, a U.N. official said Wednesday, and tens of thousands of Somalis have probably already died in the worst hunger emergency in a generation.

The Horn of Africa is suffering a devastating drought compounded by war, neglect and spiraling prices. Some areas in the region have not had such a low rainfall in 60 years, aid group Oxfam said.

The U.N. needs $300 million in the next two months, said Mark Bowden, the U.N.'s top official in charge of humanitarian aid in Somalia. The last time conditions were this bad was in 1992, when hundreds of thousands of Somalis starved to death. That famine prompted intervention by an international peacekeeping force, but it eventually pulled out after two American Black Hawk helicopters were shot down in 1993.

The southern Somali regions of Bakool and Lower Shabelle regions are suffering from famine, Bowden said. Across East Africa, more than 11.3 million people need aid, the World Food Program said.

"Somalia is facing its worst food security crisis in the last 20 years," Bowden said. "This desperate situation requires urgent action to save lives."

Famine is officially defined as when two adults or four children per 10,000 people die of hunger each day and a third of children are acutely malnourished. In some areas of Somalia, six people are dying a day and more than half of children are acutely malnourished, Bowden said. Prices of staple foods have increased 270 percent over the last year.

"If we don't act now, famine will spread to all eight regions of southern Somalia within two months, due to poor harvests and infectious diseases," Bowden said. "We still do not have all the resources for food, clean water, shelter and health services to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of Somalia."

He said it was unlikely there would be any respite from the drought until the end of the year and that he believed tens of thousands had already died in regions the U.N. was unable to access.

The drought has killed up to 90 percent of livestock in some regions, Oxfam said. But poor governance is also to blame.

Most of Somalia has been wracked by civil war since its last government collapsed in 1990. Islamist rebels currently hold most of southern Somalia. They banned most aid agencies from working there two years ago but rescinded the ban earlier this month.

Somalia is the most dangerous country in the world to work in, according to the U.N.'s World Food Program, which lost 14 relief workers in the past few years. Looting and attacks on aid convoys occur frequently.

WFP head Josette Sheeran said the group is willing to return to southern Somalia if the insurgents guarantee safe passage.

"We are absolutely fully committed to going where the hungry are," she said.

Some factions of the Islamist al-Shabab militia had already agreed to let aid workers back in, said the U.N.'s top humanitarian coordinator Valerie Amos.

"What has been stopping us and our partners from operating in the south and the center have been the insecurity and the restrictions imposed by al-Shabab," she said.

Her colleague Amir Mahmoud Abdulla, the deputy executive director of the World Food Program, said "once you start feeding in certain areas you will get a rift within al-Shabab ... It is already starting to happen."

Neighboring Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya have also been badly affected, and Eritrea is also believed to be hard hit, though its repressive government does not release figures. Oxfam says the drought has been exacerbated by poor governance and neglect, war in Somalia and land policies that restrict grazing land for nomadic communities.

Oxfam criticized those policies in a report released Wednesday, but also said several rich European countries should do more to provide emergency aid. The aid agency says there is a $800 million shortfall in funds. They say $1 billion is needed to fund relief efforts through January.

Oxfam Regional Director Fran Equiza released a statement Wednesday saying it was "morally indefensible" that countries have only pledged $200 million in addition to long-running programs.

On Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the U.S. will give another $28 million, on top of the $431 million in assistance it has given to the Horn of Africa this year.

Britain has pledged $145 million in the past two weeks - about 15 percent of what is needed - and the European Union pledged around $8 million, with more expected in coming days. Spain has promised nearly $10 million and Germany around $8.5 million but Oxfam said France has so far not pledged any more money and Denmark and Italy have said no significant new sums are available.

"There is no time to waste if we are to avoid massive loss of life," Equiza said in a statement. "We must not stand by and watch this tragedy unfold before our eyes. The world has been slow to recognize the severity of this crisis, but there is no longer any excuse for inaction."

Some donors, like the U.S., have expressed fears that aid might be diverted by Islamist groups. But Bowden said the U.N. had done its utmost to minimize the risks that aid might be diverted.

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Associated Press writers Luc van Kemenade in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and Frank Jordans in Geneva contributed to this report.

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