Health

Torturing Detainees Is Immoral and Ineffective, Says UN Human Rights Chief

A Manual for Investigative Interviewing to abolish torture among detainees suspected of crime is in the pipeline, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein said today.

A Trump Doctrine of Hypocrisy

In his first address on the global stage of the General Assembly, United States’ President Donald Trump touted an “America First” approach at the very institution that is meant to inspire collaboration between nations.

Aung San Suu Kyi: A Leader in Denial?

After finally breaking silence with a much anticipated address on the ongoing crisis in Rakhine State, Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi has disappointed the world as she refuses to acknowledge the plight of her country’s Rohingya community.

Out of Africa: Understanding Economic Refugees

Not a single month has passed without dreadful disasters triggering desperate migrants to seek refuge in Europe. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), at least 2,247 people have died or are missing after trying to enter Europe via Spain, Italy or Greece in the first half of this year. Last year, 5,096 deaths were recorded.

Rohingya: A Trail of Misfortune

Forsaken and driven out by their home country Myanmar, tens of thousands of Rohingyas are struggling to survive in Bangladesh’s border districts amid scarcities of food, clean water and medical care, mostly for children and elderly people.

Civilians ‘Direct Targets’ as Conflict Spreads in Central African Republic

Rape, torture, pillage, murder and forced displacement by the Union for Peace in Central Africa (UPC) rebel forces are the new horrifying realities faced by communities in Basse-Kotto, Central African Republic, according to the prominent London-based human rights group Amnesty International.

Floods, Hurricanes, Droughts… When Climate Sets the Agenda

When officials and experts from all over the world started the first-ever environmental summit hosted by China, they were already aware that climate and weather-related disasters were already seriously beginning to set the international agenda – unprecedented floods in South Asia, strongest ever hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and catastrophic droughts striking the Horn of Africa, among the most impacting recent events.

Refugee Camps “bursting at the seams” in Bangladesh

A dramatic increase in the number of refugees fleeing Myanmar is placing a huge strain on already very limited resources in Bangladesh, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said.

Deadly Asbestos Still Widely Used Around the World

The worldwide impact cancer has is well known. It is the second leading cause of death globally, and according to the World Health Organization, was responsible for 8.8 million deaths in 2015. Globally, nearly 1 in 6 deaths are due to cancer and of those deaths approximately 70 percent occur in low and middle-income countries.

How Aid in Cash, Not Goods, Averted a Famine in Somalia

In February, when the government of Somalia sounded an alarm to the UN about risks of a famine in the country, the UN’s Office of Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), besides quickly shuffling a response team, was acting from a steep sense of history. The Office, instead of sending out massive aid packages, distributed cash vouchers to families who could spend it to buy goods according to their needs.

Cholera in North-Eastern Nigeria: An Endemic Outbreak

A recent cholera outbreak in North-Eastern Nigeria has resulted in at least 186 suspected cases and 14 deaths as of Sep. 1, according to Borno State’s Ministry of Health.

What Charities and Relief organizations do to alleviate poverty in the Arab region

Extreme poverty remains one of the world’s biggest challenges. According to the United Nations, 767 million people live in extreme poverty around the world. Although world society has managed to lift nearly 1 billion people out of extreme poverty – in 1999 it was estimated that 1.7 billion were affected by extreme poverty – the unprecedented rise of conflict and of violence in the Arab region has worsened the socioeconomic situation of vulnerable population segments in many countries. On 22 February 2017, the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator of the United Nations –Stephen O’Brien – stated to the United Nations Security Council that 67% of the population in Syria is living under conditions considered as extreme poverty. In another Arab country affected by war and conflict – Yemen – the World Bank estimates that poverty affects 62% of the population, whereas the World Bank’s estimates this number to be at approximately 22% for Iraq or even as high as 40% in territories controlled by DAESH. Inevitably, conflict and violence have worsened the situation in the Arab region.

Small Entrepreneurs Emerge as Backbone of Bangladesh’s Rural Economy

She was born in the early 1950’s to an ultra-poor family in Kundihar, a remote village of Banaripara of Barisal division in Bangladesh. She was a beautiful baby and her father named her ‘Shahndah Rani’ which means ‘Queen of Evenings’. But in reality her life was far from that of a queen.

Towards a Resource Efficient and Pollution Free Asia-Pacific

Senior government officials from across Asia and the Pacific will meet in Bangkok this week for the first-ever Asia-Pacific Ministerial Summit on the Environment. The high-level meeting is co-convened by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP) and UN Environment and is a unique opportunity for the region’s environment leaders to discuss how they can work together towards a resource efficient and pollution-free Asia-Pacific.

Once Decimated by AIDS, Zimbabwe’s Khoisan Tribe Embraces Treatment

Sixty-seven-year-old Hloniphani Sidingo gives a broad smile while popping out through the gate of a clinic in her village, as she heads home clutching containers of anti-retroviral pills.

2017 World Water Week: ‘Water and Waste: Reduce and Reuse’

With a growing global population, a rise in energy and industrial production, the demand for water is reaching new levels.

Minamata Convention, Curbing Mercury Use, is Now Legally Binding

The Minamata Convention -- a legally-binding landmark treaty, described as the first new environmental agreement in over a decade – entered into force August 16.

Why Breastfeeding Is One of the “Smartest Investments” for All Countries

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has released new findings on the economic gains—besides the obvious health benefits—of breastfeeding.

World Still Lagging on Indigenous Rights 10 Years After Historic Declaration, UN Experts Warn

The world’s indigenous peoples still face huge challenges a decade after the adoption of an historic declaration on their rights, a group of United Nations experts and specialist bodies has warned. Speaking ahead of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples on 9 August, the group says States must put words into action to end discrimination, exclusion and lack of protection illustrated by the worsening murder rate of human rights defenders.

Zaatari Camp Marks Fifth Year With 80,000 Refugees

Jordan’s Zaatari camp, which opened in 2012 as a makeshift camp to house Syrian refugees fleeing the war, marked its fifth year on June 28.

Has Disability Risen among the Elderly?

The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2016 (or RPD Act) is laudable in its intent and procedural detail, but mostly silent on disabilities among the elderly. Indeed, for this reason alone, it is arguable that its overarching goal—“The appropriate Government shall ensure that the persons with disabilities enjoy the right to equality, life with dignity and respect for his or her integrity equally with others” —is mere rhetoric, if not a pipe dream.

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