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DGI Brief - Nov 2, 2016

Good Wednesday to all. Today's top 3 global issues news are about #journalists #Germany and #Iraq

- WORLD: Since 2008, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) spotlights countries where journalists are murdered & their killers go free – meaning the murders remain unsolved. In 2016, Islamist militant groups were the top perpetrators of these heinous crimes (in Somalia, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Nigeria & Pakistan), followed closely by criminal groups & local government & military/police officials (Philippines, Mexico, Brazil, Russia & India). Why it matters: impunity is one of the greatest threats to press freedom, not only taking & destroying lives, but spreading a message of intimidation to the entire media community. In >40%, the victims report receiving threats but these are not investigated nor is protection provided. The good news- due to international pressures, many of the repeat offender states are responding, including participation in UN’s impunity accountability mechanism. So if freedom of speech & freedom of press are important to you, check the standing of the country you want to visit or do business with – like India, who repeatedly ignores the UN process. More info on

- The lowest on record since 1991, GERMANY’s unemployment rate dropped to 5.8% in October while the Federal Labor Office reported 691,00 job vacancies in the country & a shortage of skilled workers. Why it matters: Germany needs skilled workers & there are hundreds of thousands of often skilled & definitely willing to be trained refugees eager to work, be self-sufficient. Opportunity!

- IRAQ: US-backed Iraqi forces – military, Kurdish Peshmerga & a loose alliance Sunni fighters from local tribes & Shia militia-dominated Popular Mobilization Forces/Units (PMFs or PMUs) are successfully advancing on Mosul & surrounding areas held by ISIS since 2014. They have reportedly entered the eastern districts of Mosul, while ISIS loses ground, cowardly using residents as human shields. But while this complex coalition makes strides on its mission, TURKEY began prepositioning tanks & heavy military equipment to the Iraqi border against the explicit wishes of Baghdad. Why it matters: There are well founded concerns about sectarian violence once Mosul & the surrounding Ninevah province are liberated – the population has historically been predominantly Sunni & Turkmen & will certainly object to any Shia presence. It’s what fueled the current situation & facilitated quick rise of ISIS in the first place. Despite multiple official requests that Turkey stay out, President Erdogan insists on being part of the liberation & ensuring Sunni & ethnic Turkmen have the power. Somehow, defeating ISIS seems to be one of the region’s lesser problems.

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