RI's Web Roundup

By Garrett Bradford

Egypt dominates the headlines this week, harsh winter brings hard times to Afghanistan and Pakistan, and the United States Congress considers cutting back - this is this week on the Web:

As unrest escalates in Egypt, we’re staying in the know with live blog feeds from Reuters and Al Jazeera. Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times is also blogging, tweeting and writing moving accounts of the situation. Check out his “On The Ground” blog.   

While Sudan awaits the announcement this weekend for the final results to South Sudan’s referendum for independence, small groups of youth in Khartoum are calling on peers to follow in the path of Tunisia and Egypt by standing up to the northern government and demanding better living and economic conditions.

Haitians now know who they will be able to vote for in the March presidential runoff: a former first lady and a popular musician. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has expressed concern for the whole process while reaffirming U.S. commitment to humanitarian aid for those still struggling after last year’s earthquake.

Over 350,000 internally displaced persons in Afghanistan are facing disease and harsh conditions as bitter winter weather heightens. Those displaced by floods earlier this year in Pakistan also need significant help.

The new majority in the U.S. House voted and intends to return to 2008 government spending levels resulting in deep cuts to foreign aid. The State Department could see $16 billion, or nearly one-third of its current budget, cut. We’re also concerned that refugee assistance could be cut in half, from $1.685 billion in 2010 to $823 million in 2008.  Stay tuned to more information from us on this, including how you can help us maintain these critical programs!