Colombian Peace Talks Invite Citizen Input*

The Colombian government and the FARC guerrillas will resume the peace talks in the Cuban capital on Dec. 5, in a climate of moderate optimism surrounding a process in which citizen participation could play a key role.

Outgoing Mexican President’s Environmental Legacy Questioned

"A Canadian firm wants to extract minerals in our area; it will harm the environment and use up water needed by the community," complained Hipólito García, who lives in Tetlama, 110 kilometres south of the Mexican capital. Similar complaints are echoed around the country.

Morelos Is a Beacon of Juvenile Justice in Mexico

In a country like Mexico, identified with soaring crime rates, impunity, police corruption and a largely dysfunctional justice system, reports of judicial efficiency are rare, especially in the case of juvenile justice.

Tiny Barbuda Fears Increasingly Hostile Climate

Local scientists are warning the tiny 62-square-mile island of Barbuda is becoming one of the most vulnerable spots on earth to the consequences of climate change.

Striving to Increase African Food Productivity

For decades food security and self-sufficiency in Africa have been seen as a distant dream. The Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme, however, hopes to make it a reality, and while it may have begun with a slow start, its coordinators are confident it will produce more positive results in the coming years.

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Fossil Fuel Lobby in the Driver’s Seat at Doha

A new scientific report shows that global warming can be kept well under two degrees C, but only if most of the known deposits of coal, oil and gas remain in the ground.

OP-ED: Loss and Damage from Climate Change Must Not Become the “New Normal”

As United Nations climate talks get underway this week in Doha, Qatar, they show a subtle, unsettling shift in the global climate change debate.

OPED: Toward a Conference on a Nuclear Weapon or WMD-Free Zone in the Middle East

ROME Nov 30 -- Over the course of the past 18 months and more, Pugwash has held a series of consultations on regional security and nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East. As states move closer to concretizing plans for a proposed conference on a Middle Eastern WMD Free Zone, some questions and points raised in these meetings might prove useful. This summary is not a comprehensive report, it is meant to stimulate further discussions on outstanding questions, and to highlight possible next steps that could contribute to a more positive and creative environment.

UN Women calls for leadership for inclusive peacebuilding

Addressing an open debate in the Security Council Friday, on the 12th anniversary of resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security,  UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet called on world leaders to provide determined leadership, dedicated resources and direct opportunities to enable women to contribute to the maintenance of peace and security.

“More prosperity means more democracy” for Africa

“ There is both an enormous economic growth and growth potential in numerous countries in Africa, “ Ambassador Jim Mclay, permanent representative of New Zealand to the UN said during a discussion about the Africa’s coming economic revolution. The meeting was held at the Mission of New-Zealand to the UN.

Palestinians Welcome UN Upgrade Uncertainly

Thousands of Palestinians gathered throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip Thursday, including representatives of all the major political factions, to celebrate and to show their support for the Palestinian Authority’s bid for upgraded status at the United Nations.

Mining Saps a Thirsty Desert

The Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold mine in the southern Gobi desert in Mongolia has become a symbol of a looming crisis: a limited water supply that could be exhausted within a decade, seriously threatening the lives and livelihoods of the local population.

Smoking Kills Mostly the Poor in India

Mujeeb Rahuman (39), a mason in the Venjaramoodu village in Thiruvananthapuram, the southernmost district in India’s coastal Kerala state, has been a chain smoker for the past twenty years.

Palestine Scores Overwhelming Victory in World Body

Amidst thunderous applause - and the spontaneous unfurling of a Palestinian flag in the General Assembly hall - the U.N.'s highest policy-making body Thursday voted overwhelmingly to elevate Palestine from an "observer" to a "non-member state".

Major New U.S. AIDS Plan Disallows Funding for Family Planning

At perhaps a critical turning point in the global fight against HIV/AIDS, the U.S. government, the single largest funder in that fight, on Thursday unveiled a major new strategy for pushing towards achieving an “AIDS-free generation”, the stated U.S. goal.

A Memorial of White Scarves Protests Calderón’s Legacy

Each scarf represents a life cut short. Each stitch, a tear. Each thread, a cry of frustration about death and impunity.

Evolving HIV Strains Worry Indian Scientists

While India has drastically reduced the spread of HIV over the past decade, new strains of the virus that cause acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) are troubling medical scientists in this country.

Caribbean Fed Up with U.S. Rum Subsidies

Caribbean governments have begun a quiet lobbying effort to convince Washington to rethink the subsidies it grants to the rum industry in U.S. territories, or face a formal complaint in the World Trade Organisation.

Veracruz – a Black Hole in Mexico

Something smells rotten in the state of Veracruz. In Xalapa, the capital of this eastern Mexican state, known as the “Athens of Veracruz” because of its strong cultural tradition, fear is in the air.

The Price of Ignoring the Sexuality of Kenya’s HIV-Positive Youth

It all started with a fight, one that would change his life forever.


UNAIDS Reports Successes But HIV Stigma Still Lingers

“The Aids World Day report of the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) shows that  new HIV infection rates have  decreased by 50 percent across 25 low- and middle-income countries,” Ambassador Dr. Mwaba Kasese-Bota,  Permanent Representative of Zambia to the UN, told a panel on “Getting to zero: Strategies for addressing HIV-related stigma and discrimination”.

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