Stories written by Tharanga Yakupitiyage
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Q&A: Honouring Women of Africa and the Diaspora

This year, the African Union and the Diaspora African forum are honouring the first woman minister for education in Kenya for her long and outstanding work in girls’ education and governance.

Land Degradation: A Triple Threat in Africa

Sustainability, stability, and security—the three overlapping issues are an increasing concern among many especially in Africa where land degradation is displacing citizens and livelihoods.

Q&A: Raising the Profile on the Largest Environmental Issue of Our Time

Land degradation caused by human activities is occurring at an alarming rate across the world, and the cost will be steep if no action is taken.

Family Planning Is A Human Right

It has been five decades since the international community affirmed the right to family planning but women still remain unable to enjoy this right, which is increasingly under attack around the world.

United Nations Compact Must End Child Detention

World leaders must commit to ending child migrant detention during United Nations negotiations next week, a human rights group said.

Peace “Only Way Forward” For Yemen

Tackling the relentless conflict in Yemen has never been more urgent as it has pushed the Middle Eastern nation “deep into the abyss.” However, much can be learned from recent and ongoing initiatives.

America First or America Alone?

The United States’ move to withdraw from the Human Rights Council will have “reverberations” throughout the world in years to come, say human rights groups.This week, the U.S. announced its intention to withdraw from the 47-member Human Rights Council, accusing it of bias against Israel.

Project Population: Addressing Asia’s Ageing Societies

While populations have seen and undergone changes since the beginning of time, one trend in particular is unfolding across the world: less children, older people. In an effort to tackle the complex issue in Asia, government officials are convening to help create a sustainable society where no one is left behind.

Human Rights Must Be on the Table During U.S.-North Korea Talks

Human rights issues must be included in next week’s United States-North Korea summit in order to create a “sustainable agreement”, said a UN expert.

When Two Becomes One: Blending Public and Private Climate Finance

With the landmark Paris Agreement now almost two years old, funding for climate-related activities continues to be a challenge. However, efforts have been underway to bring two seemingly very different sectors together to address climate change.

To Have Children or Not: The Importance of Finding a Balance

While the world’s population has changed dramatically over the last 50 years, little is still understood about fertility transition and the reasons behind it.Over the last half a century, the global fertility rate has halved, reaching a level of 2.5 births per woman.

“I Wake Up Screaming”: Gaza’s Children Bear the Brunt of Violence

Reham Qudaih wakes up nightly to the same nightmare: her father shot, lying on the ground in a pool of blood.“In my dreams he is on the ground shot. When I have that dream – which I’ve had more than once I wake up screaming,” she told the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC).

Revving Up Green Growth

While sustainable development may still seem elusive to some, a new initiative wants to pave a path for nations working towards a greener future.Partnering for Green Growth and the Global Goals 2030, or P4G, is a new partnership initiative that aims to boost countries’ efforts in achieving the globally adopted Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Dreaming of A New Sustainable Economy

Officials from around the world came together to create and support a vision for a new, sustainable economy: a bioeconomy.Almost 1000 bioeconomy experts, from former heads of state to civil society leaders, convened in Berlin for the second Global BIoeconomy Summit to discuss best practices and challenges.

International Community Ramps Up Action on Venezuela Crisis

One year into the most recent series of protests and a humanitarian crisis with no end in sight, international groups have called for action to help protect Venezuelans.A complex political and economic crisis in Venezuela has left millions without access to basic services and resources, prompting UN agencies and human rights groups like Human Rights Watch to speak up and urge action.

“International Solidarity” at Yemen Donor Conference

The international community has pledged over two billion dollars towards urgently needed humanitarian assistance to Yemen during a UN event.

Solving Japan’s Fertility Crisis

While much of the global discussion for decades has been focused on overpopulation and its consequences, less can be said of the risks of low fertility and an ageing population—risks that are currently threatening the future of Japan.

Conflicts Force Up Global Hunger Levels

Largely driven by conflict, the number of hungry people has dramatically increased around the world, reversing decades of progress, according to a new report.

A Whole New Decade for Water

As old and new challenges continue to threaten its access, the UN has dedicated the next decade in order to protect a crucial but fragile natural resource: water.

Rohingya Crisis May Be Genocide, UN Officials Say

In the wake of persistent violence against the Rohingya community, UN officials have expressed growing fears that genocide is being incited and committed in Myanmar.

Helping Women, Period

The United Nations Headquarters and Brooklyn Bridge were lit up on Thursday night not to help tourists navigate the major landmarks but to bring attention to a key issue that many women and girls face today: period poverty.

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