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Among the latest developments in the Syrian humanitarian crisis, China and Russia have reaffirmed their opposition to a forced regime change; Turkey and Japan joined 11 other countries in expelling Syrian diplomats, and the U.N.’s Human Rights Council is due to meet to discuss the massacre in the city of Houla.

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Despite news of the Syrian government's acceptance of a peace plan brought in by special envoy Kofi Annan a day before, by Wednesday it was clear that those headlines didn't mean much in the way of actual progress in Syria.

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Former United Nations secretary-general and current U.N. and Arab League envoy Kofi Annan said Tuesday that his bid to get Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (above) and his administration to accept a peace plan Annan proposed has been successful. Enacting it, however, is another matter.

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On Tuesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey V. Lavrov signaled a shift in his country's position vis-à-vis the ongoing crisis in Syria, indicating that Russia may be willing to cooperate more with the U.N. Security Council's proposed plan, but with some stipulations.

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The competition included Bill Gates, Angela Merkel and Kofi Annan, among others, but this week a little-known organization called the China International Peace Research Center named Russia's bombastic Prime Minister (more).

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Researchers have issued a report declaring that climate change is already killing 300,000 people a year and that the number will only increase as heat, flood, storm and fire combine to create "the greatest humanitarian challenge the world faces."

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