- - Tuesday, April 3, 2012

PORT-AU-PRINCE — The United Nations says Haiti has seen a jump in the number of cholera cases as the rainy season begins.

The U.N.’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs says in a bulletin released Tuesday that the new cholera cases were found in western Haiti.

In early March, when nightly rains began, health officials recorded 77 new cases a day for the entire country.

The fresh cases come after a steady decline. During last year’s rainy season, aid workers saw peaks of more than 1,000 cases on some days.

Health officials say the waterborne disease has killed more than 7,000 people and sickened another 530,000 since it was likely introduced by a U.N. peacekeeping unit after the January 2010 earthquake.


Netanyahu wants deal to prevent ‘binational state’

JERUSALEM — Israel’s prime minister said Tuesday that he still hopes to reach a peace deal with the Palestinians, because the alternative would be absorbing them into Israel and destroying the Jewish character of the state.

“I want to solve the conflict with the Palestinians because I don’t want a binational state,” Mr. Netanyahu said at a rare news conference. “For as long as it depends on me, we will ensure the Jewish and democratic character of Israel.”

The statement was notable because it in effect concedes a key argument made by Mr. Netanyahu’s ideological opponents on Israel’s Zionist left: A pullout from territories the Palestinian claim for a state is not just a concession that could be made in exchange for peace - but also an imperative for an Israel that wants to remain a Jewish state that is democratic.

Jews make up roughly 80 percent of Israel’s almost 8 million people. However, if Israel were combined with the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem - the lands it occupied in the 1967 Middle East war - then the Arab population nears parity, and in the view of some demographers likely to become a majority soon.

Indeed, as the prospect of peace seems to grow more remote, increasingly there are voices on the Palestinian side predicting - as a threatened default rather than a desired outcome - a “one-state solution” in which Jews and Arabs have equal status.


Rhino poaching at crisis level, African wildlife specialists say

NAIROBI — Wildlife officials say rhino poaching in Africa has reached crisis levels with nearly 1,000 animals killed in the last five years.

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