Headlines

Unleashing the Power of the Private Sector

Over the next two to three decades, there are two major overarching trends that Bangladesh will have to deal with, and therefore have to plan for as well. The first trend is a positive one, which is our desire, and indeed commitment, to graduating out of Least Developed Country (LDC) status within less than a decade. The second, more negative trend, is to tackle the adverse impacts of climate change that will occur along the way.

Choosing to Breathe Clean Air

Karachi's air is more polluted than Beijing. Think about it. All the clues have been there for many years — my mother-in-law constantly on oxygen or using an inhaler in Karachi, my children using inhalers or taking anti-allergy tablets. But as a scientist, my light bulb moment only happened when I saw a graph in the International Energy Agency (IEA)’s Global Outlook report for 2016, which showed Karachi next to Beijing, but higher on the pollution scale. The IEA’s report was on air pollution because, as the report’s foreword notes, “energy production and use is the most important source of air pollution coming from human activity.” I cannot get that graph out of my head.

Humankind’s Ability to Feed Itself, Now in Jeopardy

Mankind’s future ability to feed itself is in jeopardy due to intensifying pressures on natural resources, mounting inequality, and the fallout from a changing climate, warns a new United Nations’ report.

The Rise of One-Person Households

A significant global demographic change having far-reaching consequences yet receiving scant attention is the rise of one-person households.

Shrinking and Darkening, the Plight of Kashmir’s Dying Lakes

Mudasir Ahmad says that two decades ago, his father made a prophecy that the lake would vanish after the fish in its waters started dying. Three years ago, he found dead fish floating on the surface, making him worried about its fate.

Trump Marks the End of a Cycle

Let us stop debating what newly-elected US President Trump is doing or might do and look at him in terms of historical importance. Put simply, Trump marks the end of an American cycle!

South Sudan Declares Famine, Other Countries May Follow Warns UNICEF

South Sudan Monday became the first country to declare famine since 2012, as UNICEF warned that 1.4 million children are at risk of dying from starvation with famine also imminent in Nigeria, Somalia, and Yemen.

Tax Evasion Lessons From Panama

Unlike Wikileaks and other exposes, the Panama revelations were carefully managed, if not edited, quite selective, and hence targeted, at least initially. Most observers attribute this to the political agendas of its main sponsors. Nevertheless, the revelations have highlighted some problems associated with illicit financial flows, as well as tax evasion and avoidance, including the role of enabling governments, legislation, legal and accounting firms as well as shell companies.

Humanitarian Crisis, Result of Decades of Globalization with No Concern for Social Justice

The distressing images of desperate people making the treacherous journey across the Mediterranean Sea and the Balkans to escape armed conflict, social tensions, discrimination and poverty harm the preconditions to achieve social harmony.

Red Tape Snarls Nepal’s Ambitious Poverty-Alleviation Plans

Juna Bhujel of Sindupalchowk District, 85 kilometres northeast of Nepal’s capital Kathmandu, lost her daughter-in-law in the Apr. 25, 2015 earthquake. Fortunately, she managed to rescue her two-year-old grandson, who was trapped between her mother’s body and the rubble.

Celebrated Iraqi Musician Naseer Shamma Named UNESCO Artist for Peace

Irina Bokova, the Director-General of UNESCO, will name Iraqi composer and oud virtuoso Naseer Shamma as a UNESCO Artist for Peace in a ceremony at UNESCO Headquarters on 23 February (6.30 pm).

Palestinian Rejection Underscores Limits of UN Chief’s Powers

Pointing out an example of the hierarchy of political power at the United Nations, a former Nigerian ambassador once told a group of reporters of an encounter at an international gathering in Africa when he ran into one of his friends who had returned from a visit to New York.

Confusion over U.S. Travel Ban Grounds Foreign Correspondents

New restrictions on immigrants and refugees coming to the United States are also posing challenges for foreign correspondents covering news in the United States. Some have had to indefinitely postpone plans to report on conflicts in the Middle East while others have found an unfriendly reminder of their past treatment as journalists in less free countries.

Aging, Depression and Disease in South Africa

Old age is often characterised by poor health due to isolation, morbidities and disabilities in carrying out activities of daily living (DADLs) leading to depression.

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.

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