Quote of the day.
"These are just a bunch of kids from California, they could be off surfing or whatever but they're not. They're giving a voice to people who before no-one knew about and no-one cared about and I salute them." - Luis Moreno Ocampo, chief prosecutor at the Internatlonal Criminal Court, defending the makers of the KONY 12 video on Joseph Kony and the “Lord’s Resistance Army” in Uganda.
1. Banks foreclose on churches in record numbers.
"Banks are foreclosing on America's churches in record numbers as lenders increasingly lose patience with religious facilities defaulting on loans, representing a new wave of distressed property seizures triggered by the 2008 financial crash."
2. Economy adds 227K jobs, jobless rate unchanged.
"U.S. employers added 227,000 jobs in February to complete three of the best months of hiring since the recession ended. The unemployment rate was unchanged, largely because more people streamed into the work force."
3. Senate rejects expediting Keystone pipeline.
"In the wake of lobbying by President Obama and Senate Democratic leaders, the Senate Thursday defeated legislation to speed up construction of a U-S.-Canadian oil pipeline. The White House victory came after the president started personally calling Democratic senators Wednesday night."
4. Court blocks parts of law on migrants in Alabama.
"The United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit issued an order on Thursday prohibiting enforcement of sections of the 2011 law that restricted commercial and government transactions for illegal immigrants."
(New York Times)
5. NAACP to challenge state voting laws before U.N. panel in Geneva.
"Taking a page from its past, the NAACP will go before a United Nations panel in Switzerland next week to argue that new voting laws approved by some U.S. states violate civil and human rights by suppressing the votes of minorities and others."
6. Making a run for the bank.
"One of the things that’s just not done is to campaign openly for the presidency of the World Bank. … But now Jeffrey D. Sachs, an economist, best-selling author and director of Columbia University’s Earth Institute, is openly drumming up support for his own candidacy."
7. U.S. strikes Afghan prison accord.
"Afghanistan and the US have reached a deal to transfer US-run prisons in the country to Afghan control. The largest and most controversial of these is Bagram jail, which holds 3,000 detainees, including terror suspects."
8. Syrian activists reject Annan's dialogue call.
"Syrian National Council chief "angry" that UN envoy has warned against military intervention against Assad government."
9. Iran is pressed on access for nuclear inspectors.
"The six world powers that have agreed to resume negotiations with Iran over its disputed nuclear program issued a blunt request on Thursday that the Iranians allow international inspectors unfettered access, most notably to Parchin, a large restricted military complex that the inspectors suspect may house a testing chamber for explosives used in atomic weapons triggers."
(New York Times)
10. Ecuador indigenous protesters march against mining.
"Indigenous protesters in Ecuador have begun a two-week march across the country against plans for large-scale mining projects."