Stories written by Baher Kamal
Baher Kamal is Senior Advisor to IPS Director General on Africa & the Middle East. He is an Egyptian-born, Spanish-national, secular journalist, with over 43 years of experience. Since the late 70s, he specialised in all development related issues, as well as international politics. He also worked as Senior Information Expert for the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership at the European Commission in Brussels, and as the first-ever Information Officer and Spokesperson at UNEP’s Mediterranean Action Plan in Athens. Kamal speaks Spanish, Arabic, English and Italian. | Twitter |

UN FARMS to Create One Million Days of Work for Mideast Migrants

The problem is rather complex and often not recognised: in one of the major regions of both origin and destination for migrants and refugees -- the Near East and North of Africa, 10 per cent of rural communities is made up of forcibly displaced persons, while more than 25 per cent of the young rural people plan to emigrate.

New Evidence Confirms Risk That Mideast May Become Uninhabitable

New evidence is deepening scientific fears, advanced few years ago, that the Middle East and North Africa risk becoming uninhabitable in a few decades, as accessible fresh water has fallen by two-thirds over the past 40 years.

The Indigenous ‘People of Wildlife’ Know How to Protect Nature

In the northern part of Mount Kenya, there is an indigenous community -- the Il Lakipiak Maasai ("People of Wildlife") -- which owns and operates the only community-owned rhino sanctuary in the country.

These Women Cannot Celebrate Their Day

This is a story that one would wish to never have to write—the story of hundreds of millions of life-givers whose production and productivity have systematically been ‘quantified’ in much detailed statistics, but whose abnegation, human suffering and denial of rights are subject to just words.

Antarctic Ice Lowest Ever – Asia at High Risk – Africa Drying Up

For those who still deny the tangible impact of climate change, please note that the extended spell of high global temperatures is continuing; the Arctic is witnessing exceptional warmth with record low ice volumes--the lowest on record; global heat is putting Asia on higher risk than ever, and Africa is drying up.

UN Declares War on Ocean Plastic

The available data is enough for the United Nations to literally declare war on oceans plastic: more than 8 million tonnes of leaks into their waters each year – equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic every minute, wreaking havoc on marine wildlife, fisheries and tourism, and costing at least 8 billion dollars in damage to marine ecosystems.

Of Arabs and Muslims and the Big Ban

Now that President Donald Trump’s decision to ban citizens of seven Muslim majority countries from entering the United States continues to drift into legal labyrinths about its legality–or not, it may be useful to clarify some myths that often lead to an even greater confusion regarding the over-written, under-reported issue of who are Arabs and who Muslims.

Every Year 700 Million People Fall Ill from Contaminated Food

It may sound like an endless tale of modern seven plagues: mad cows, avian flu, led-poisoned fish, swine fever, desert locusts being the most dangerous of migratory pests, let alone new, aggressive rust threatening entire wheat crops in three continents, just to mention a few. Now it is about contaminated food that every year causes illness to 1 in 10 people around the world – or around 700 million - killing 420,000 people as a result.

A Dire Vacuum in a World in Crisis

“The world is in a crisis, not least because governing élites have estranged themselves from the needs and aspirations of ordinary people. This sense of being left behind has lead the latter to rebel against their country’s stratified governance,” warns a Geneva-based human rights and dialogue centre.

Indigenous Peoples Lands Guard 80 Per Cent of World’s Biodiversity

They are more than 370 million self-identified peoples in some 70 countries around the world. In Latin America alone there are over 400 groups, each with a distinct language and culture, though the biggest concentration is in Asia and the Pacific– with an estimated 70 per cent. And their traditional lands guard over 80 per cent of the planet’s biodiversity.

IFAD 2017 – It’s Women’s Turn in Rural Development

Josefina Stubbs, from the Dominican Republic, may become the first woman to preside over the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), which is dedicated to eradicating rural poverty.

World’s 40,000 MP’s Must Enjoy Their Rights – But Are They?

“Members of Parliament must be free to enjoy their human rights. If not, how can they defend and promote the rights of those who elected them? Yet, around the world vocal parliamentarians find themselves under threat. The 40,000-strong community of parliamentarians includes many men and women who have risked careers and even their lives to express their beliefs.”

Want to Prevent Stroke, Diabetes, Cancer? Get Moving… Now!

Tired, lazy, bored, laying down long hours watching TV or seated checking your email? Wrong. And dangerous: not enough exercise contributes to cancer, diabetes, depression and other non-communicable diseases.

Trump to Pull Out of the UN, Expel It from the US?

So far, Donald Trump’s first decisions as president of the United States have left no doubt that he intends to implement his electoral threats, while most likely not fulfilling the promises he made as a candidate.

Inequality (III): Less Employment… and More ‘Junk’ Jobs

While just eight men are enjoying their huge wealth, equivalent to that of half the world, new forecasts project darker shadows by predicting rising unemployment rates, more precarious jobs and worsening social inequality. To start with, there will be more than 1.4 billion people employed in vulnerable working conditions.

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