Headlines

Pandemic Induced Drop in Remittance Flows to South Asia

Remittances are an essential part of economic activity in low and middle-income countries (LMIC), including those in South Asia. Because of the pandemic remittances to LMIC are expected to drop from $548 billion on 2019 to $508 billion in 2020 and $470 billion in 2021. The implied growth rates for 2020 and 2021 are -7.2% and -7.5%. For South Asia the drop will be from $140 billion in 2019 to $135 billion in 2020 and $ 120 billion in 2021 with implied growth rates of -3.6% and -10.9%. https://www.knomad.org/publication/migration-and-development-brief-33

The Problem Is Not Trump

The election tie, whatever the end result, that has been revealed is not a temporary phenomenon. The protagonist of Trump's resistance is not the tenant of the White House of the last four years. The real agent, although the constitutional winner is Biden, is that sector that for decades was considered an abnormality.

India: How Did Young People Access Care During the Lockdown?

COVID-19 has developed into an unprecedented public health crisis, the impact of which has been seen across global health systems and services. As the crisis continues to evolve in India, there is a need to examine the impact of the pandemic and ensuing nation-wide shutdown on young people’s lives, particularly, their experience of mental ill health.

Punches & Insults: Why Zimbabwe’s Women Candidates Want to Change the Political Playing Field

“I have long given up on active politics,” Gertrude Sidambe, a 36-year-old member of one of Zimbabwe’s opposition parties, tells IPS. When female members of the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front complained last month about political violence as male members chose brawn over brains to solicit for positions, the party’s National Secretary for Women’s Affairs Mabel Chinomona advised that they enter the punch-and-insult battlefield and “fight” like everyone else. 

Growing Resilient Food Systems Post Covid Is Key for Africa

When it comes to food security, the challenge is not always about producing more - it’s also about quality: producing food that is wholesome and preserved safely.

UN Takes Preventive Measures Following 5,660 Lab-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases System-Wide

As we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic response, I would like to assure you once again that the health and safety of personnel and delegates continues to be our number one priority.

UN’s $5.1 Billion Shortfall Threatens Operations Worldwide

When the United Nations was struggling to cope with a cash crisis back in April 1996, one of the many drastic measures it undertook was to cut down on its staff.

South Africa Has Failed to Harness the Digital Revolution: How It Can Fix the Problem

The COVID-19 pandemic has precipitated a migration from physical work spaces in many sectors of the economy to online, digital services, supported by staff working from home. Parts of the economy such as mining, manufacturing and hospitality still require workers to be physically present. But other sectors have discovered that virtual platforms are effective substitutes for offices.

Women in War-Ravaged Afghanistan Fight Back for Their Rights

Bullets, bombs, tyranny and torture. Children crying for food, civilians struggling to survive, women unable to walk out of their homes freely. When we are not under siege from bombs and landmines, ordinary Afghans suffer from hunger, natural hazards and poverty.

Forced Child Marriage & Conversion: Public Discussion & Legal Reforms Called for in Pakistan

October 13 began like any other day at the Lal house as Raja Lal and his wife Rita Raja left for work at 7:30 am. "I made the usual breakfast of anda paratha (egg and flat bread) and told my eldest to lock the door from inside," Raja, who works as an ayah in a school, told IPS. Their 13-year old daughter, the youngest of their four children, did not go to school that day as her school shoes no longer fit and her parents hadn’t bought her a new pair yet. Little did they know that that day was the beginning of a nightmare for the Lal household. Their daughter would then allegedly be "abducted, forcefully converted and married in just one day”, Lal, a Christian, told IPS.

UN at 75: Slow Death or a New Direction – Part 2

Kofi Annan’s Secretary-General-ship was a second honeymoon for the UN, coming six years after the fall of the Berlin Wall it was a moment of hope and alignment between the major powers of which he took ample advantage.

Solving the Challenge of Food Security Key to Peacebuilding in the Sahel

In 2013, when Jamila Ben Baba started her company, the first privately owned slaughterhouse in Mali, she did so in the midst of a civil war as Tuareg rebels grouped together in an attempt to administer a new northern state called Azawad. Ben Baba, who is originally from Timbuktu, in northern Mali — where much of the civil war conflict took place — based the business in the country’s western region of Kayes and grew it into what is considered the largest private slaughter house in the West African nation.

UN at 75: Slow Death or a New Direction – Part 1

Let me begin with an appeal to our venerable friend, the UN: get down on the ground with the grandchildren. Just having celebrated its 75th birthday, we can hear your knees creak! The UN, for as long as I have known it up close- since its thirties- has often seemed prematurely old.

Africa Must not Assume a ‘Business as Usual’ Approach to COVID-19 Recovery

The corona virus pandemic is impacting Africa’s population in quite differentiated ways and is significantly entrenching inequality. At the greatest risk are lives and livelihoods of the poor.

Building Blocks for Nuclear Ban Treaty: NPT & Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice

The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) will become binding law for participating states on January 22, 2021. Entry into force was triggered on October 24, the date marking the 75th anniversary of the United Nations, when Honduras become the 50th state to ratify the TPNW, reaching the threshold set by the treaty.

Driving Climate Change from the Top in the Dominican Republic

When President Luis Abinader arrived at his inauguration in an electrically driven car as a symbolic gesture of his Government’s intentions to make sustainable development one of its main objectives – he signalled the start of addressing climate change commitments in the country.

The Rape of India’s Dalit Women: It’s All about Gender & Class Subordination

Shabnam*, a young woman from Northern India’s Haryana state, is two years away from becoming a law graduate. She sees parallels between her own rape and that of the 19-year-old Maha Dalit woman whose brutal rape and torture by a group of men from a “dominant” or “higher” caste in the neighbouring state of Uttar Pradesh triggered nationwide protests.

Drop Boxes Tell Tale of US Democracy in 2020

It sits stolidly, bolted onto a concrete base outside the Maricopa County Recorder’s office in Phoenix, Arizona. Weighing in at around 600 pounds,  it sports “anti-tampering features” and “heavy-duty, all-weather construction”. Security agents check it periodically and it appears to be watched by a camera. As I scrutinize it, a man in an SUV pulls up and deposits a ballot in its slot. He tells me he votes this way every election, then drives off.

Economic Trends and What’s Important in Life

US third quarter GDP numbers released two weeks ago delighted stock markets and President Trump. Output had picked up by 7.4%, annualised as 33.1%, the largest quarterly economic growth on record, almost double the old record of 3.9% (annualised as 16.7%) in the first quarter of 1950, seven decades ago.

COVID-19: A Global Survey Shows Worrying Signs of Vaccine Hesitancy

It has been nine months since the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the outbreak of COVID-19, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, a “public health emergency of international concern”. Since then, more than 44 million cases have been recorded and over one million lives lost. Economic costs measure in trillions of dollars. Global recovery will take years.

Q&A: COVID-19 has Pushed Women Peacebuilders from Key Leadership Roles

Women need to be given roles as negotiators, not just offered representation through advisory groups, Agnieszka Fal-Dutra Santos from the Global Network of Women Peacebuilders (GNWP) told IPS.

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