IPS UN: Inside the Glasshouse

Human Rights Defenders Need to be Defended as Much as they Defend our Rights

They are ordinary people – mothers, fathers, sisters, sons, daughters, brothers, friends. But for me they are extraordinary people – the ones who have the courage to stand up for everyone else’s rights. They are the human rights defenders.

The NPT & Conditions for Nuclear Disarmament

Fifty years ago, shortly after the conclusion of the 1968 nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), the United States and the Soviet Union launched the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT).

UK Announces Aid Package for Gazan Hospitals Near Breaking Point

The UK Government has announced an aid package to support hospitals in Gaza that are “near breaking point”. The £2 million package will go to the International Committee of the Red Cross’s 2019 Israel and Occupied Territories (ILOT) Appeal. The aid will contribute to surgical equipment, drugs, wound dressing kits, prosthetics, and post-surgery physiotherapy for up to 3,000 disabled people.

Bridging the Gaps for the Disabled

People with disabilities are being left behind, and steps must be taken to ensure their inclusion in the world of education and work.

Civil Society Organisations Under Attack by Rightwing Governments & Extremist Groups

The widespread political repression in countries such as the Philippines, Egypt and Saudi Arabia-- and rising right-wing nationalism in the US, Brazil, Italy, India, Poland and Hungary-- have increasingly triggered attacks on human rights and civil society organisations (CSOs).

Safe Menstrual Practices Important for Progress

As menstruation continues to be shamed in many communities, one organisation is rising up to the challenge to ensure “safe menstruation for all women of Bangladesh.”

Japan’s Gender Gap

Japan is not making progress in gender equality, at least relative to the rest of the world. Despite the Japanese government’s attempts in recent years to pass legislation promoting the economic activity of women, Japan ranked a miserable 110 out of 149 in the World Economic Forum’s 2018 Gender Gap Index, which benchmarks countries on their progress toward gender parity across four major areas.

The Myth About the Race for Artificial Intelligence

UMEA, Sweden, 26 March 2019 (IPS) -- At this year’s Davos economic forum, US executives warned that China may be winning the so-called Artificial Intelligence (AI) race with Europe. In another recent article, Bloomberg pointed out that countries are rushing to not be left behind.

What They Need: Money, Resources, & a Seat at the Table

As a long-time advocate, I’ve been invited to speak at dozens of global conferences about the needs of girls and women in humanitarian emergencies.

South-South Cooperation: a Path to Implementing UN’s 2030 Agenda

I see five issues that will be central to implementing the Paris Agreement on climate change and achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. South-South Cooperation can offer solutions to all of them. First, rising inequality both between and within countries is eroding trust and deepening a sense of injustice. Globalization has enabled many people to escape poverty – but its benefits are not shared equitably and its costs fall disproportionately on the poor and vulnerable.

South-South Cooperation Now Triangulates with the North

It sounds like a contradictory play on words, but the countries of the industrialised North are currently the big supporters of South-South cooperation, as was demonstrated at the United Nations Second High-Level Conference on this subject, held in the Argentine capital.

Myanmar and China’s Bride Trafficking Problem

Women and girls from Myanmar are increasingly being trafficked as “brides” to China, a human rights group found.

Did a Backlash Against Trump Trigger Historic Highs for US Women in Politics?

The dramatic increase in women legislators voted into office last November and the historic high of women candidates for the 2020 presidential elections have visibly changed the male-dominated political landscape in the US.

Dismantling Patriarchy Must Begin at Home: A Reflection on Gender Equality

This week, I joined thousands of activists, campaigners, thought-leaders, and change-makers in New York to advocate for women's rights and promote gender equality during the 63rd session of the UN's Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).

UN’s Plan to Offshore Back-Office Jobs is Probably a Waste of Money

A $64 million plan to move 750 back office jobs from the UN’s main duty stations to four new centralized service centres in Budapest, Montreal, Nairobi and Shenzhen, could end up being a waste of money.

Fighting the World’s Largest Criminal Industry: Modern Slavery

Modern slavery and human trafficking is one of the fastest growing criminal industries and one of the biggest human rights crises today, United Nations and government officials said.

People Affected by Leprosy in Latin America Unite for Their Rights and Their Voice

With the decision to found a regional coalition to promote rights and greater participation in national and international forums and decisions, the First Latin American and Caribbean Assembly of Organisations of People Affected by Hansen's disease, popularly known - and stigmatised - as leprosy, came to an end.

In Latin America, the Term Leprosy Still Carries a Burden from Biblical Times

Known scientifically as Hansen's disease, leprosy carries a symbolic burden from the past that people affected by the disease and experts from around Latin America are fighting, including the terminology used.

From 2018: When Environmental Crises Hit Homes, Women Suffer the Most

When Mandelena became a mother, she was only 16. During the prolonged dry season in Gwor County, South Sudan, her community saw crops failing and cattle dying. Children stopped going to school because of hunger and women and girls had to walk up to five hours every day to collect water.

People Affected by Leprosy Still Face Stigma in Latin America

The First Latin American and Caribbean Meeting of Organisations of People Affected by Hansen's Disease, more widely known as leprosy, seeks to exorcise stigma and discrimination. The meeting has brought together around a hundred activists in Brazil.

Innovative Sustainable Business: A Three Trillion-Dollar Opportunity that UN Environment Wants People to Develop

In the East African region, communities around the continent’s largest water body, Lake Victoria, regard the water hyacinth as a great menace that clogs the lake and hampers their fishing activities. But in Lagos, Nigeria, some groups of women have learned how to convert the invasive weed into a resource, providing them with the raw material needed to make handicrafts.

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